8 June World Ocean Day 2024 Action Theme

We currently face one of the greatest threats ever to our blue planet and all its inhabitants: the climate crisis. It is all too clear that we need a healthy ocean for a healthy climate, and vice versa, and we need significantly stronger local, national, and international action from both government and corporate leaders. Now.   

For 2024, we are launching a new multi-year action theme: Catalyzing Action for Our Ocean & Climate. By growing the movement through transformative collaboration, we aim to create not only a healthy blue planet, but also a more just, equitable and sustainable society 

Together, we can persuade national legislators and corporate leaders to follow through on their promises and all the big talk about doing the right thing, specifically:  

  • make the best use of all existing climate solutions;  
  • accelerate a just transition to clean and renewable energy;  
  • stop fossil fuel extraction, including oil, gas and coal; 
  • rapidly and equitably phase out its existing production including for single use plastics;
  • collaborate with and amplify the voices of local leaders who are working to implement action within their communities; 
  • protect and restore natural coastal and ocean ecosystems (and on land) by creating strongly protected areas covering at least 30% of our lands and waters by 2030;  and
  • keep on creating more solutions at the local, national and international levels that are based on the best science  

By collaborating in transformative ways, we can create a healthier and more abundant future for all. It’s ambitious, but the World Ocean Day 2024 network collaborating with a wide range of partners in the growing global movement has collectively achieved some major victories over the years.

A bit of history

When The Ocean Project began coordination of World Ocean Day in 2002 (proposed by the Canadians 10 years earlier at the Rio Earth Summit), we saw it as a great concept that needed global attention. Ever since then, we have prioritized collaboratively coordinating World Ocean Day as a unique opportunity to unite and rally the world for celebration and collective action of our ocean planet in June and throughout the year. We also aim to grow the movement to protect and restore our ocean and develop a stronger global constituency to advocate for a healthy ocean and stable climate. 

Soon after beginning this global coordination over 20 years ago, our network of partners encouraged the inclusion of an annual theme to encourage increased individual and collective impact during World Ocean Day celebrations.  

Here’s a summary of the World Ocean Day action theme over the years:  

  • 2002-2004: The Ocean Project began conducting year-round outreach to all sectors to promote the concept of World Ocean Day, and opportunities for connecting with others. We collaborated primarily with the World Ocean Network, but also other associations and organizations worldwide. We developed activity and event ideas, outreach tips, action opportunities, tools and more each year.  
  • 2005-2008: Conducted campaign with the World Ocean Network to “Help Make a Difference for our Ocean Planet!” with a petition to the UN, both in-person and online, to officially recognize 8 June as World Ocean Day, signed by tens of thousands around the world. The UN General Assembly passed a resolution in late 2008, officially recognizing World Ocean Day, starting in 2009. During these years, we also created a range of awareness and action tools to engage the public, including a comprehensive variety of personal actions to take.   
  • 2008: Launched an annual Action Theme for the first time. “Helping our climate / helping our ocean” with a special focus on coral reefs for International Year of the Reef. We collaborated with the International Coral Reef Initiative and other organizations.   
  • 2009-2010: Based on partner feedback, we began two-year themes, starting with “One Ocean, One Climate, One Future”, to help make the connection between climate change and ocean health. We provided customizable tools and action ideas for community event organizers to engage their target audiences.   
  • 2011-2012: “Youth: the Next Wave for Change” helped to generate more involvement with youth worldwide, combined with  action steps. This focus was based on our comprehensive market research which clearly showed that youth are the most promising members of the public to reach out to if you want to create lasting change.
  • 2013-2014: “Together we have the power to protect the ocean” showed how small actions can add up to make a big difference. In 2014, we provided resources and tools for taking action, in addition to focusing on testing and measuring interest in helping with solutions to climate change, sustainable fisheries, and plastics. Key partners included the US EPA’s Green Power Partnership and Greenlight Energy, to help partners both obtain and promote renewable energy; Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program to provide ways for seafood consumers to make a difference; and several plastic pollution-focused organizations to encourage reduction of single use plastics.  
  • 2015-2019: Based on the data from 2014 events – and with the issue of plastic pollution quickly worsening despite not yet being a top-of-mind issue that people and politicians cared about – we created a multi-year action focus on “preventing plastic pollution” and worked with organizations to inspire the international community to find solutions. Break Free From Plastics was a key global partner.   
  • 2020-2023: The five-year campaign helped get plastics onto the collective public, corporate and government radar, so we decided to spotlight another hugely important and relatively unknown issue, that served as a great opportunity for action: “Protecting at least 30% of our lands, waters, and ocean by 2030” (or simply 30×30). We focused on uniting conservation action to grow the global movement calling on world leaders to support 30×30, with Campaign for Nature helping as a key global partner.  

Growing the momentum

By continuing to collaborate together, even more closely than before, we can solve the large environmental issues facing our blue planet. 

The World Ocean Day action theme provides thousands of organizations and millions of individuals with tangible opportunities to protect and restore our ocean. Our efforts to support and mobilize people to take action don’t stop after World Ocean Day on 8 June; Throughout the year, we continue to provide ways for the World Ocean Day network to rally on issues related to safeguarding our ocean. We prioritize keeping the partner organizations and individuals involved in World Ocean Day network both informed and actively engaged with major interconnected issues, such as plastics, 30×30, overfishing, biodiversity loss, the climate crisis, polluted runoff from land, overdevelopment of the coasts, and more threats that we all collectively face.  

With the World Ocean Day Youth Advisory Council and with our partners we will be collaboratively developing more resources and opportunities soon. To stay informed, follow World Ocean Day on social media (InstagramFacebookTwitter/X), regularly visit the blog, and/or sign up for the monthly World Ocean Day newsletter, with all the latest information & resources for action.  

One Ocean, One Climate, One Future – Together!  

Join RanMarine in celebrating World Ocean Day 2024 by supporting our mission to clean up aquatic environments! We are proud to design and develop Autonomous Surface Vessels for cleaning floating waste, biomass, or algae. Click here to ➡️ view our solutions and join the movement for cleaner seas!
🌊 #CleanSeas #WorldOceanDay #RanMarineTech

Original story appeared on: https://worldoceanday.org/

CES 2023: MegaShark takes a bite out of marine trash

MegaShark gobbles up toxic plastic and marine litter.

Sharks are known for having stomachs of steel. The newest product from Dutch scale-up  RanMarine Technology is no exception.

One could describe the MegaShark as a robot vacuum for bodies of water. It’s a remotely piloted vessel that sits atop the water and scoots along with a wide-open mouth, sucking up debris and carting it back to shore.

The MegaShark hopes to tackle the ever-growing problem of polluted waterways, a particular concern here in Florida.

According to RanMarine Technology, there’s currently 200 million metric tons (approximately 220 U.S. tons) of toxic plastic in marine environments and another 11 million metric tons (or 12 U.S. tons) are added to the pile every year. The UN Environmental Program predicts the amount of new waste entering waterways will triple by 2040.

The MegaShark has an interesting digestive system too. According to RanMarine Technology, a startup of CleanTech Robotics, the seaworthy drone has an onboard trash compactor which allows it to scoop up as much waste as possible every time it hits the water.

The company said the device can be piloted remotely but is also hardy enough for users to sit or stand on it as it makes its rounds. The onboard battery will keep the MegaShark moving for about eight hours.

A bonus feature: The MegaShark packs all the necessary instruments for water quality analysis.

RanMarine plans to introduce two other “species” to its shark lineup.

The TenderShark is tailored to the boating community. The mini tender is able to carry light cargo loads efficiently and effectively from ship to shore, and vice versa. Users have the option to collect floating waste as the TenderShark makes its cargo runs.

Meanwhile, the SharkPod is what RanMarine describes as a “mothership” — it’s an autonomous floating docking station which can charge up to five WasteShark drones at a time. RanMarine said the solution will allow ports, harbors and cities to keep their drones chugging around the clock. The SharkPod will be available to purchase in early 2023.

Currently, RanMarine’s drones are sucking up garbage for the Port of Houston, Disney theme parks, Universal and the United Nations in addition to several other local and state authorities worldwide.

Read the article by Drew Wilson on Florida Politics

Drew Wilson

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.

Halkiopi”: A marine drone in the… “battle” for the cleaning of Thermaikos

The marine drone has the ability to collect up to 160 liters of trash per voyage

“Halkiope” is a marine unmanned floating waste collection vessel. It was bought on behalf of the municipality of Thessaloniki from the Netherlands. It is the first time that it is tested in Greece and more specifically it will sail in the waters of the Thermaikos Gulf.

The marine drone it has the ability to collect up to 160 liters of garbage per trip, which ends up in a special built-in removable bin. It will be handled from the shore at the points where the largest amount of waste is concentrated on the seafront of Thessaloniki, such as the port, the White Tower, the Sailing Club and the Kellarios ‘Ormos.

The first tests in the waters of Thermaikos for “Halkiopi” have already started and will continue until next summer in order to assess the efficiency or any weaknesses so that it can be improved, while it will work in addition to the already existing vessel that cleans the sea area at regular intervals by other agencies.

At noon, another waste collection test took place in the presence of the mayor of Thessaloniki, Konstantinos Zervasof the vice-mayor of the Environment, Erotokritos Theotokatos, but also of private companies that contributed to the operation of the marine drone at the height of the Sailing Club.

“Thermaikos gulf got a shark, a garbage shark. We are very happy that in the effort to keep Thermaikos clean we have another tool in our hands. It is very important that the municipality of Thessaloniki has a high-tech product, a drone that we can use to collect floating pollutants. “The more weapons we have in this effort, the more optimistic I will be that our city will become more attractive and more beautiful,” said Mr. Zervas.

Mr. Theotokatos, for his part, underlined that “the sea is the sensitive part of the environment, it is the mirror of our city and we must protect it”.

“Halkiopi” is expected to operate additionally initially once a week, mainly when there is a severe problem on the beach, while at the same time actions will be taken to raise awareness among citizens to protect the sea from plastic waste.

Also included in the pilot actions is the study of placing traps (nets) in two selected stormwater drains, in order to investigate the possibility of their use, with the aim of reducing the floating materials that end up in the sea in cases of heavy rainfall.

Into the depths


While we start to understand some of the migration patterns of certain shark species and have begun to pinpoint some of their meeting spots, the mysterious lives of sharks and rays in the deeper ocean columns has not been extensively studied – until now. From some of the most mysterious deep-diving species, to those that spend more time in shallower water, a new study, led by ZSL’s Institute of Zoology and Hopkins Marine Station at Stanford University, is the first ever global analysis of shark diving behaviour. A collaborative research team shows how the elasmobranch community which includes sharks, skates and rays use the vertical dimension of the ocean.

Using data from 989 biotelemetry tags – tags which allow remote measurements of behavioural activity – the global team of 171 researchers from 135 institutions analysed 38 species of elasmobranchs from the North Pacific to the Indian Ocean, and the Arctic to the Caribbean. The researchers hope that this new information on shark diving behaviour will help improve the knowledge about sharks’ ecological roles and foster conservation management plans that were previously hindered by lack of data for certain species.

Thirteen species were found to dive to depths greater than one kilometre beneath the surface. Whale sharks were found to dive to a staggering 1,896m while great white sharks were recorded diving deeper than 1,200m, providing new and important insights into the behaviour of these ocean giants.

“Knowing just how deep some species dive (or don’t dive), will help us to inform much needed conservation plans for these species and their relatives   – for example, more widespread use of bycatch avoidance strategies. It will also help us understand how these animals are likely to respond to the predicted climate induced changes to our oceans,” explains Dr David Curnick, research fellow at the ZSL Institute of Zoology and co-lead author of the paper.


The data on shark diving behaviour also revealed how some species vary their depth in different parts of the world. It showed how this changes between night and daytime periods as the predators move up and down in the water to hunt their prey and, in some cases, avoid being hunted themselves. Although the reasons why species usually known to frequent shallower waters were recorded diving into deep, dark waters is not confirmed, the study suggests it is likely a combination of seeking food sources, body temperature regulation, reproduction, and predator avoidance.

The team found that although many species can and will undertake deep dives, 26 of 38 species including the oceanic whitetip shark, tiger shark, scalloped hammerhead, and silky shark spent more than 95% of their time in the top 250m of the water column, depths where they are most likely to interact with fishing gears.


Dr Curnick says: “The way that large marine animals use the horizontal space in our ocean has been well studied. However, until now, comparative studies in the vertical planes have been limited, despite the ocean being an average 3.5km deep and elasmobranchs occupying all levels within this dynamic environment.

“Investigating how elasmobranchs use the vertical dimensions of their habitat is key in understanding the way they live, but also how anthropogenic stressors are impacting them. This helps us to find ways to better protect them through more informed monitoring strategies for example. By looking at a wide range of elasmobranch species in this study, we demonstrate how they face overlapping risks, such as targeted fisheries and getting caught in nets, also known as ‘bycatch’.”

More than one third of all sharks and rays are threatened with extinction, according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Having a three-dimensional map of how elasmobranchs use the ocean is vital in understanding the roles they play in wider ecosystems and to determine their individual exposure to threats.

“This massive dataset provides new insights into the vertical movement patterns of sharks and rays on a global scale for the first time. This is an important step for both understanding which sharks and rays are most likely to face threats, but also to consider how changing temperature and oxygen levels may influence their vertical distributions,” comments Stanford Postdoctoral Research Fellow and co-lead author of the paper, Dr Samantha Andrzejaczek.


As the world warms due to climate change, it is predicted that the structure of the ocean is also going to change. With many areas suffering oxygen depletion and shifts in ocean chemistry, many species have already been driven into unfamiliar territory and habitats. However, a better understanding of their fundamental ecology can inform predictions on how reduced oxygen availability at certain depths could limit shark, ray and skate vertical movements and help to predict the wider implications of climate change.

“I’ve seen for myself the terrible threats that shark populations face around the world and how they have been decimated in recent decades.  I hope that this incredible research will help scientists, conservationists and fisheries managers better protect these astonishing – and hugely important – species in the future so that they can retain their rightful place in the ocean,” concludes Ernesto Bertarelli of the Bertarelli Foundation.

Read article on Oceanographic Magazine
Photographs by BYRYAN DALY

Additional photographs by Alex Kydd, Guy Stevens (Manta Trust), Mark Royer, and Uli Kunz.