The following projects were nominated by our expert jury for the "ocean tribute" Award 2018 in the various categories:
Coral Sea Foundation
The Coral Sea borders the Great Barrier Reef and the islands of Melanesia and contains marine ecosystems of extraordinarily high quality and biodiversity. This region accommodates the last great reservoir of ultra-diverse coral reefs in the world, however it currently has insufficient marine protected areas to achieve robust conservation outcomes. Our aim is to raise awareness of the ecological and social value of the Coral Sea and the Eastern Coral Triangle and take a proactive role in its sustainable management. Marine reserves support local fisheries and safeguard biodiversity, but in this region, they can only be successful if they are initiated, administered and supported by the local communities. The "Sea Women of Melanesia" program trains young indigenous women in diving and marine science which qualifies them for a leading role in raising awareness for the need for ocean reservations in their local communities. The team from the Coral Sea Foundation helps the landowners to research and register their marine protected areas and provides humanitarian assistance by way of clean water infrastructure, medical care and training materials in order to promote the participation of the community in the reservations.
The Malizia Ocean Challenge is part of the Malizia sailing campaign by the deep-sea sailing professionals Boris Hermann and Pierre Casiraghi. During deep-sea regattas the team will collect data on the condition of the oceans and evaluate it in co-operation with the Max Planck Institute for Metrology in Hamburg and IFM Geomar in Kiel. The data will focus on the absorption of CO2 by the oceans. So that no CO2 is emitted during these regattas, “Malizia“ will change to energy supply without fossil fuels on board the sailing yacht. Comparable yachts also use their diesel drive to generate the power supply. Associated with this sailing and scientific project is an initiative intended to explain the themes of ocean and climate protection to 8-13 year-olds and young people. Teachers will also be trained in these special subjects and a partnership has been forged with the children’s magazine Geolino which has120,000 subscribers. NB: The project is supported by the Max Planck Institute and IFM Geomar
Sky Ocean Rescue
With its initiative Sky Ocean Rescue the private television company fights plastic pollution in our oceans. In practice the campaign comprises three measures:
1. By 2020 Sky will remove all disposable plastic from its company. 2. Foundation of an Ocean Rescue Innovation Fund which promotes innovations to avoid disposable plastic. 3. Partnershipwith the WWF to ensure that ocean areas are protected.
The initiative has already borne its first fruits. By restructuring its own company Sky has already been able to save 11,16 tons of disposable plastic in Germany. The first start-ups have also been supported by the promotional fund and the partnership with WWF formed. Moreover, Sky is working towards making all TV products as sustainable as possible.
Unfortunately, the infrastructure for the disposal of waste water from yachts is not well developed or pumping stations are not working. Many people therefore discharge their waste water into the water. The added odour inhibiting chemicals are harmful to the ecosystem. enteron is the first certified fully biological mini sewage treatment plant for sailing and motor yachts, houseboats and expedition vehicles. The waste water is cleaned directly on board without any chemicals being added. The clean waste water can be discharged into the environment without any concerns and thus environmental pollution can be avoided. The fully biological process is based on the principle of nature. The mini sewage treatment plants are designed for people who live permanently on houseboats or yachts. The shipyards, too, have already recognised the idea of sustainability and its advantages and have shown interest, especially in self-sufficient and sustainable ship concepts. enteron can be installed both retrospectively or during the construction phase. Compliance with the internationally required wastewater limits is certified in accordance with IMO/MARPOL and MED. Since September 2017, serial production started and approx. one unit is delivered per week.
Taking balls of seagrass from the Mediterranean Sea, Prof. Richard Meier has developed a modern and environmentally friendly insulating material which is by no means inferior to any traditional industrial product. The insulator is certified by the Blue Angel environmental label, can be re-used but is also easily disposable, e.g. in a vegetable patch as plant substrate. The product has already won several awards:
NextWave Plastics is an industry-led, open-source collaboration among leading technology and consumer-focused companies to develop the first global network of ocean-bound plastics supply chains. Originally convened by Dell Technologies and led by Lonely Whale, this initiative aims to keep plastic in our economy and out of the ocean and has committed to reduce a minimum of 25,000 tons of plastic waste entering the oceans by 2025 across countries most impacted by plastic pollution. Members include Dell Technologies, Bureo, ,General Motors, Herman Miller, HP Inc., Humanscale, IKEA, Interface, and Trek Bicycle.
Alnitak is an ocean conservation project that involves the general public in its work (Citizen Science). With this initiative, anyone of any age who is interested, can act as a scientist for a week and thus get to know the relevance of ocean conservation. In 2018, 12 teachers and 38 young students from local schools were invited on board in July, as part of Alnitak’s educational outreach program about plastic pollution: “Changemakers At Sea”. The students and teachers were like part of the crew and helped collect valuable data. This collection is principally used to manage and survey the marine protected areas in the Mediterranean and to record the numbers of different wildlife populations (whales, tuna, seabirds etc). For this data collection, the Alnitak team use the “Toftevaag“ sailing yacht, a centennial Norwegian ketch.
Throughout the world coral reef ecosystems are increasingly being damaged by human influences, such as pollution from agricultural contaminants. The project has set itself the task of solving this problem by saving damaged reefs. This is done by using the “gardening coral reefs“model which is based on two steps to restoration. Firstly, corals are grown in specially developed underwater coral nurseries. In the second phase the corals grown in this way are replanted into damaged reefs. The concept has had promising results and has been tested throughout the world on various types of coral and reef. The knowledge gained on the preservation of the coral reefs is shared with scientists in various countries. Scientists from 20 countries are involved in the project, representing more than 25 universities and institutes. It has thus been possible to set up an international network to ensure that the concept is spread and accessible internationally.
The Ocean Race is the ultimate, fully-crewed, round the world, yacht race, encompassing 12 stopovers in iconic locations. The organisers have combined this global sporting event with cutting-edge scientific research, through a Science Programme, to raise awareness of plastic pollution in the oceans and the global solutions to it, supported by institutions, governments, corporate partners and philanthropists. During the last edition (known as the 2017/2018 Volvo Ocean Race) the seven teams collected data such as microplastic concentrations, water temperature, CO2 and salinity content and other oceanographic information. This included pioneering data from some of the most remote parts of our oceans. This information has been evaluated and processed by international scientists and is being used to increase our understanding of ocean health and weather patterns. The race has also worked together with UN Environment to promote ocean protection with the#CleanSeas campaign. This campaign has been supported by 11th Hour Racing, the Mirpuri Foundation, Volvo, AkzoNobel, Stena Recycling, Bluewater and the Ocean Family Foundation. In addition to the Science Programme, the organisers used each stopover of the race to promote the subject of ocean protection. Through an inspiring Education Programme, they were able to reach more than 100,000 schoolchildren and millions more during stopovers and through international and online media. In separate pavilions during stopovers more than 400,000 visitors were able to experience interactive information on the subject. In addition to this campaign, the organisers of the race ensured that single-use plastic was not used which meant that the use of nearly 400,000 single-use plastic bottles was avoided.