It's National Marine Week and time to recommit ourselves to the need to take the utmost care of our oceans, as if - and indeed it does - our very life depends on it. This blue heart of our planet reflects the health of humanity.
In SA we have 11 000 marine species and 3100 km of coastline to look after. Mother Ocean's ability to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere and give us life-giving oxygen to breathe depends on healthy marine ecosystems, like mangroves, marches and seagrass beds. We are tied to her as if by an umblical cord, even more so now with climate threats.
We have no less than 136 distinct ocean habitats identified along the South African coastline, earning us the reputation as one of the most productive and biodiverse marine systems in the world.Together, these habitats support over 11,000 marine species, many of which are found nowhere else on the planet. Yet only 1% of our offshore waters are protected.
Hence we are excited to have partnered with the Hope Spots initiative by the renowned ocean warrior, Dr. Sylvia Earle. There are already 50 Hope Spots declared across the planet - ocean spots which are critical to ocean health. Next is our turn, when 6 Hope Spots will be declared along our coast, starting with the launch in Cape Town in December.
No longer is the ocean the responsibility of scientists or governments alone. Hope Spots rely on the collaboration and participation of scholars, entrepreneurs, community organisations, clubs and people of ALL walks of life to join in educating, conserving and creating sustainable waterbased enterprises and recreational activities.
We will follow the Hope Spot events to Algoa Bay, the Aliwal Shoal, the Cape Whale Coast, False Bay, Knysna and Plettenberg Bay. If you would like to attend and cover any of these events, please reach out to us. The full programme will be published shortly.
Loads more ocean news to re-mind, re-member and help re-solve the threats which impact on our future. And of course other news to keep you on your green toes.
We are doing a new intake of interns now. Please be in touch if you'd like to work with us, get to know the green industry, gain valuable experience and make an important contribution towards a sustainable future.
"The focus of the world is on the ocean dynamics around South Africa and between us and the Antarctic for several reasons," said Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa at the Cape Town launch of the annual National Marine Week Campaign.
All those promoting awareness and education of the marine environment are gathering in Gauteng from 11-16 January 2015 to share research, classroom and field activities and be energized with new ideas.
The West Virginia State Supreme Court finalized a big blow to the biotech giant Monsanto in August, finishing a settlement causing Monsanto to pay $93 million to the tiny town of Nitro, West Virginia for poisoning citizens with Agent Orange chemicals.
October 16 was World Food Day. As the 20th World Food Day since the establishment of our democracy dawns on South Africa, a grim shadow of hunger and malnutrition hangs over the gains of the democratic era.
A pregnant leopard named Brandy was snared in Magaliesberg recently. According to a statement released by Johannesburg City Parks, she was released back into the wild after two operations to treat her open wounds.
A powerful cyclone was pounding a large swath of India’s eastern seaboard with heavy rain and strong winds on Sunday, killing at least six people and causing major damage to buildings and crops, in one of two storms lashing Asia.
Nobel Peace Laureate and Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu lashed out at the government for “kowtowing” to China by barring the Dalai Lama from attending a global summit of fellow prizewinners in Cape Town.
On 21 September 2014 nearly 400,000 people of all walks of life, economic status and nationalities, came together in one of the largest marches in a decade in New York, and one of the largest mobilisations for the environment ever!
Can there be anything better than getting to see a whole bunch of great bands in beautiful locations with thousands of potential new friends surrounding you at all times?This year's Rocking The Daisies was a highlight as always.
National governments — especially the American government — are largely paralyzed on climate change. But one message from the U.N. Climate Summit and surrounding events was that cities can do a lot to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on their own.
With 22% more cars on the roads and a 80% higher petrol price than 5 years ago, the demands and stresses of private transport are growing fast, which has severe implications on individuals, business and the environment.