We celebrate June 8 as the World Oceans Day so to promote the implementation of worldwide Sustainability Development Goals, and to encourage the humans of the earth to use the ocean resources respectfully.

Our oceans are one of the biggest sources of life for us. However, human activities have caused enough havoc and disturbed the balance with nature. The oceans have not been spared. On the World Oceans Day, the authorities take the time to address all issues concerning the well-being of the oceans.

The day also sees numerous activities aimed to foster public interest in the cause of the oceans. Some of these activities include launching new campaigns and initiatives, celebrations at aquariums or zoos, beach clean-ups, carrying out awareness drives in various institutes, conservation action programs, and organizing sustainable seafood events.

How was the World Oceans Day born?

The idea was conceived in 1987 when the Brundtland Commission (a.k.a. the World Commission on Environment and Development) noted in its Brundtland Report that “the ocean sector lacked a strong voice compared to the other sectors.”

However, it was in 1992 that Canada’s International Centre for Ocean Development (ICOD) and the Ocean Institute of Canada (OIC) at the Earth Summit – in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, proposed the concept.

The United Nations General Assembly passed the Declaration to officially recognize the day in 2008. Before achieving this recognition, a few dozens of events used to happen to promote the cause of the oceans by the coordinated efforts of The Ocean Project and the World Ocean Network.

Over the years, the World Oceans Day has received widespread acknowledgement from governments and environment conservation institutions & activist across various countries. The awareness events multiplied in numbers and most interestingly, unique themes weregiven to each World Oceans Day since 2009.

This year (2020) the theme of World Oceans Day is “Innovation for a Sustainable Ocean”.

Let’s have a look at all the past World Oceans Day themes identified by the UN!

2009Our Oceans, Our Responsibilities
2010Our Oceans: Opportunities and Challenges
2011Our Oceans: greening our future
2012UNCLOS @ 30
2013Oceans & People
2014Ocean Sustainability: Together let’s ensure oceans can sustain us into the future
2015Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet
2016Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet
2017Our Oceans, Our Future
2018Clean our Ocean!
2019Gender and Oceans