As ASA does its job of being an advocate for the world’s oceans, we asked Marine Conservationist Lauren Coiro about how sailors can make an impact on the environment that they take so much from, the Ocean. Her advice sheds light on the bigger picture of environmental sustainability as well as the simple fact that each and every one of us can make a difference.
When it comes to wildlife, keeping a safe distance and not disturbing them is always a good policy, even when it’s tempting to connect with a sea creature. If you’re going to fish, take extra care to collect all fishing line and netting as this is one of the biggest polluters in the ocean.
Boaters use the ocean as everything from their home and playground, to a source of income and food, and for relaxation and peace. Boaters in their essence are stewards of the ocean.
Almost every coastal community has a nonprofit or government organization fighting to protect the water. I highly recommend getting involved locally.
The other most important thing is for this to become an ongoing conversation- talk to other boaters, your friends, your family about these issues. Every time I get someone to start speaking for the ocean too, I’ve just doubled my voice. That’s the most powerful feeling of all.
5 Things Sailors Can Do To Help The Environment
- Be a trash picker.
See some trash floating by? Scoop it out of the water because every little bit helps.
- Keep a safe distance from wildlife.
It may appear like that whale wants to get to know you but it’s best to steer clear of the sea lions, dolphins, turtles, manatees…you get the point.
- Going fishing?
Keep track of your fishing line and netting, this is a common polluter and poses a danger to wildlife.
- Pump, Don’t Dump.
Use a pump out station to empty your tanks instead of dumping your waste into the ocean or even worse, the marina.
- Use your voice!
Get involved on the local level with a nonprofit or government agency that is fighting to protect the oceans.
Read other posts from Lauren's Learning To Sail SeriesASA 101, Part 1
Getting My Feet Wet ASA 101, Part 2
First Day of Sailing School ASA 101, Part 3
Sailing in the Clouds