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How A Global Pandemic Impacted Our Oceans

Picture of woman holding a large starfish and smiling

Impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic have been far reaching, touching industries and issues as diverse and complex as tourism, education, and mental health. And now, we know that COVID-19 is also impacting our oceans.

CSI member Ocean Wise have been examining COVID-19’s impact on the ocean.

In COVID-19: Waves of change – How a global pandemic impacted our oceans, they examine how public health restrictions have resulted in lost ocean research opportunities, reductions or cancellation of volunteer-based ocean conservation activities, as well as shifts in seafood related industries.

The immensity of global actions to slow the spread of COVID-19 demonstrates that we can make large changes to better care for our oceans. What we do to restart after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted will define a new ‘normal’ for our oceans. We have an opportunity to prioritize ocean health, to invest in research to improve our knowledge, re-evaluate our waste production, and choose sustainable seafood in support of healthy ocean.

What can you do?

  • Help contribute to monitoring wildlife by downloading the WhaleReport app for iOS or Android.
  • Participate in community environmental and citizen science groups.
  • Consider a safe shoreline cleanup, either solo, household or small team.
  • Reduce waste and consider taking the Ocean Wise plastic pledge.
  • Look for the fish symbol and choose to buy sustainable Ocean Wise recommended seafood.
  • Support local and seasonal seafood.
  • Support Ocean Wise Seafood partners near you.

What the government can do:

  • Fund and support marine environmental research and consider it vital to our welfare and economy.
  • Support the creation of ocean management plans and networks of Marine Protected Areas to protect habitats and species, with the goal of healthy oceans.
  • Support programs for reduced waste.
  • Incentivize sustainable fishing methods.
  • Phase out fishing methods that are damaging to the environment or have high by-catch

Do you have a climate or water technology solution that will positively impact communities and ecosystems across Canada? Our six month Earth Tech accelerator is accepting donations until November 8.

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