Pacific Ocean waves crashing on coast of Moresby Island, Haida Gwaii, British Columbia, Canada. © Kevin McNamee / WWF-CanadaCanada is really an ocean nation. With the longest shoreline on the earth, bordering the Atlantic, Arctic and Pacific oceans, it’s no marvel that Canada proposed celebrating World Oceans Day again in 1992. It was created to unite individuals around the globe in defending our blue planet. Last yr alone, over 2,000 occasions had been hosted in over 140 nations — a very world effort to assist obtain a extra sustainable society, a more healthy ocean and a greater future.
While we’re celebrating our ocean right now, ocean conservation is a 365-day-a-year job. WWF-Canada has employees engaged on all three coasts to assist individuals and nature thrive. From restoring coastal habitat to defending the deep ocean to working with trade and authorities to make sure fisheries and delivery are extra sustainable, we’re actively working with different companions to reverse the decline of wildlife in our oceans.
So right now, we’re taking a second to have fun a few of our ocean wins from final yr!
In 2019, Canada hit a serious milestone by surpassing its goal of defending no less than 10 per cent of our ocean and coastal areas by 2020. With the safety of Tuvaijuittuq within the High Arctic, Canada has protected nearly 14 p.c of its ocean, and has dedicated to defending 25 per cent by 2025 and dealing in the direction of 30 per cent by 2030.
Capelin — tiny forage fish which might be key to marine meals webs — returned to Ship Cove, NL for the second yr! In 2017, supported by Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Coastal Restoration Fund Grant, WWF-Canada restored a seaside the place capelin traditionally laid their eggs earlier than the sediment was eliminated for building tasks. Capelin want a selected sort of seaside habitat to spawn, and as soon as the sediment was restored, they returned yr after yr.
WWF is constant its work to maintain whales secure from ship strikes and underwater noise. In partnership with the Marine Mammal Observation Network, we’re creating on-board coaching for the delivery trade to determine whales in Northwest Atlantic waters, threats to those animals related to massive vessels, and ways in which mariners can reduce these threats.
The Enhancing Cetacean Habitat and Observation (ECHO) Program, led by the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, noticed 82 per cent of piloted business vessels voluntarily cut back their velocity in the summertime of 2019 via Haro Strait and Boundary Pass, an essential feeding space for southern resident killer whales. This helped cut back threats to the critically endangered species. WWF-Canada is a member of the ECHO Program Advisory Working Group (AWG) and has participated in this system since its inception in 2014.
Canada made a dedication to ban heavy gas oil within the Arctic. Heavy gas oil poses a serious threat to wildlife in an oil spill and might intensify the impacts of the local weather disaster as a result of black carbon, which is produced when heavy gas oil is burned, will increase the speed at which sea ice melts.
© Catharine Tunnacliffe / WWF-Canada
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup celebrated 26 years of cleanups, volunteerism and citizen science on shorelines throughout Canada by choosing up 163, 505 kg of litter. Although cleanups are presently suspended, you may nearly participate in certainly one of their webinars or use their on-line studying assets!
PEI banned single-use plastic luggage in the summertime of 2019, and the provinces of NS and NL have plans to ban single-use plastic luggage this yr.
A ban was put in place to ban massive tanker ships carrying over 12,500 metric tons of oil from waters off the north coast of British Columbia to be able to shield the area from potential oil spills.
In BC, WWF-Canada is collaborating with native organizations to type a Forage Fish Monitoring Network. Using the facility of citizen science, volunteers have recognized 28 seashores the place sand lance lay their eggs, and 11 seashores the place surf smelts spawn inside the Salish Sea. Knowing this data helps determine seashores that want restoration and safety, making certain the resilience of forage fish spawning habitat within the face of local weather change.
We celebrated ocean exploration in a documentary when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration vessel the Okeanos Explorer visited deep ocean habitats off Nova Scotia.
As we have fun World Oceans Day nearly this yr, take a look at what a few of our places of work in St. John’s, Halifax and Victoria are as much as and take heed to this private message from our President and CEO, Megan Leslie.