We recently asked PADI followers on Instagram to share their favorite quotes about diving and the underwater world. We received classic favorites such as born to dive, forced to work and just keep swimming, just keep swimming, but we also saw quite a few quotes about ocean protection.
The most popular quote about ocean conservation we received originated with Dr. Sylvia Earle:
Dr. Earle, founder of Mission Blue, has given us many words of wisdom. In her book The World Is Blue: How Our Fate and the Ocean’s Are One she writes:
“Even if you never have the chance to see or touch the ocean, it touches you with every breath you take, every drop of water you drink, every bite you consume. Everyone, everywhere is inextricably connected to and utterly dependent upon the existence of the sea.
If you think the ocean isn’t important, imagine Earth without it. Mars comes to mind. No ocean, no life support system.”
One diver reminded us, not all classrooms have four walls, and with that in mind, we wanted to share a few more quotes you can use to educate and inspire others about the importance of protecting our oceans. In the words of Robert Swan, OBE:
Every Citizen of Planet Earth Can (and Should) Be Part of the Solution
As Ma Jun, a Chinese environmentalist, journalist and National Geographic Explorer said,
“At the end of the day, the government and local government all bow to public pressure….[Regulatory] enforcement is weak, and environmental litigation is near to impossible. So there’s an urgent need for extensive public participation to generate another kind of motivation.”
Nancy Knowlton, coral reef biologist, and Sant Chair for Marine Science at the Smithsonian Institution emphasized the importance of each person taking ownership of the problem. Even when a problem seems immense, individual actions can lead to change.
“I watched the coral reefs that I studied as a student vanish in the blink of an eye, and for decades I wrote and spoke of ocean obituaries. But big scary problems without solutions lead to apathy, not action….Small steps taken by many people in their backyards add up.”
Reducing our individual use of single-use plastics is one of these small steps that can make a big impact. Many communities ban plastic bags thanks in part to awareness-raising by passionate ocean protectors such as the Mediterranean Association to Save the Sea Turtles (MEDASSET).
David Suzuki, CC OBC FRSC professor, science broadcaster and environmental activist wrote:
Doing all we can to combat climate change comes with numerous benefits, from reducing pollution and associated health care costs to strengthening and diversifying the economy by shifting to renewable energy, among other measures.
“If we pollute the air, water and soil that keep us alive and well, and destroy the biodiversity that allows natural systems to function, no amount of money will save us.”Dr. Suzuki shares his view with a Native American of the First Nation Abenaki tribe:
“When the last tree has been cut down, the last fish caught, the last river poisoned, only then will we realize that one cannot eat money.”
There is No Planet B…
Ban Ki-moon UN Secretary-General (2007 – 2016) said:
Environmentalist and nurse Terri Swearingen famously shared a similar sentiment:
“We are living on this planet as if we have another one to go to.”
Can You Leave This World a Little Better Than You Found It?
Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the world scouting movement, wrote in his final address to The Boy Scouts: