The first-ever Coral Triangle Day will be celebrated in several locations around the Coral Triangle region on June 9, 2012, to highlight the importance of marine conservation and to raise awareness on this global center of marine biodiversity.
An interpretation of World Oceans Day in this part of the world, the Coral Triangle Day brings together individuals, organizations, and establishments from different parts of the region on one special day to celebrate the beauty and uniqueness of this region and to promote the importance of oceans through varied activities including: beach clean-ups; sustainable seafood dinners; educational exhibitions; marine-themed bazaars; beach parties; and many more.
The Coral Triangle Center (CTC) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) are joining hundreds of individuals and partners in this celebration across the region, by hosting a marine conservation education day in Bali. The open house event is inviting school children aged 8-15 to start young in learning about the importance of healthy seas with our marine scientists and TNC volunteer, actor/diver and traveler Nicholas Saputra.
The Executive Director of the Coral Triangle Center, Rili Djohani, expressed that the Center is happy to open its doors to the young generation. “CTC strongly believes that capacity building should start with the young, an important investment to ensure that future generations safeguard their rich marine life for sustainable benefits.” She added that this will also instill pride in being the custodians of the Coral Triangle, an area that has the highest marine biodiversity on earth.
Meanwhile, The Nature Conservancy’s Indonesia Marine Program Director, Abdul Halim, said “Coral Triangle Day is an excellent way to celebrate our oceans, which cover two-thirds of our planet and provide so much for us from food, livelihoods, to sun, surf and sand holiday destinations. The oceans are downstream of everything, so all of our actions, no matter where we live, effect the oceans and the marine life it holds.” Halim, however, is deeply encouraged to see that many people are doing what they can – large and small – to ensure that our oceans can continue to provide for us now and in the future.
TNC is also taking part in other celebrations in Kupang, Raja Ampat and Sorong, partnering with the Kupang University of Muhammadiyah, local communities in Raja Ampat, and media partners, Conservation International and WWF in Sorong to hold beach clean ups and education activities such as viewing films on oceans as well as drawing and coloring contests.
Everyone is encouraged to do one special thing on this day that will contribute to saving the Coral Triangle and to share it on the Coral Triangle online platform: www.thecoraltriangle.com/day.
The Coral Triangle is a six million square-kilometer ocean expanse that contains the highest number of reef building corals on the planet. Its spectacular coral reefs systems are home to thousands of whales, dolphins, rays, sharks, and six of the world’s seven species of marine turtles.
Spanning across six countries in Asia and the Pacific including Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor Leste, the Coral Triangle is also a nursery ground for highly valuable tuna species and much sought-after reef fish species. It directly sustains the lives of more than 120 million people who heavily depend on marine resources for food and income.
However, coastal development, destructive fishing, overfishing, unsustainable tourism, the illegal harvest and trade of endangered species, and climate change, among many others, are taking a heavy toll on this fragile marine ecosystem.
The Coral Triangle Day, envisioned to be an annual, open-sourced event, hopes to empower individuals to take specific action to help protect and conserve this globally-significant marine ecoregion.
Individuals, organizations, and establishments celebrating the Coral Triangle Day are encouraged to post their videos or photos on www.thecoraltriangle.com/day to show the world what they are doing for the oceans during this day and to help create a truly regional community of Coral Triangle supporters.
The Coral Triangle Center’s (CTC) mission is to enhance local capacity in regional marine conservation in the Coral Triangle by providing training, sharing best on-site practices, establishing learning networks, and building public-private partnerships. In 12 years of service we have conducted more than 100 training sessions with partners for some 2,000 regional practitioners, hosted numerous international exchanges, and promoted policy dialogues for decision makers involved in sustainably managing the region's marine resources.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.