Project Cora: Breathing Life Into The Big Blue
We've aligned with the team at OnlyOne with one objective in mind: Restore and sustain ocean health. From coast to coast, every single order plants Mangrove trees where they're needed most and coral in the reefs around the world.
The following list describes a few things oceans provide us and why we plant with every order:
- Climate Regulation: The ocean plays a crucial role in regulating the Earth's climate. It absorbs and stores vast amounts of heat, helping to stabilize global temperatures. Additionally, the ocean acts as a carbon sink, absorbing significant amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which helps mitigate climate change.
- Oxygen Production: The ocean is responsible for producing a substantial portion of the Earth's oxygen. Marine plants, such as phytoplankton, produce oxygen through photosynthesis. These tiny organisms are vital for sustaining marine life and supporting the oxygen we breathe.
- Biodiversity and Ecosystems: The ocean is teeming with an incredible diversity of plant and animal species. It supports complex ecosystems, ranging from coral reefs and kelp forests to deep-sea habitats. These ecosystems provide habitat for countless marine organisms, contributing to biodiversity and supporting the overall health of the planet.
- Food Security: The ocean is a significant source of food for millions of people worldwide. It provides a valuable protein source in the form of fish, shellfish, and other seafood. Fishing and aquaculture industries rely on the ocean's resources to sustain communities and economies.
- Economic Importance: The ocean plays a crucial role in global trade, providing transportation routes for goods through shipping lanes. Additionally, marine industries such as tourism, shipping, offshore oil and gas exploration, and renewable energy (e.g., wind farms) contribute significantly to the global economy.
- Climate Resilience: Coastal areas and their communities depend on the ocean for protection against natural disasters like storms and hurricanes. Coastal ecosystems, including mangroves, salt marshes, and coral reefs, act as natural barriers, absorbing wave energy and reducing the impacts of coastal erosion and flooding.
- Scientific Research and Exploration: The ocean remains one of the least explored areas on Earth, and studying it helps expand our understanding of marine life, geology, climate patterns, and more. This knowledge is crucial for making informed decisions about marine conservation, sustainable resource management, and addressing environmental challenges.
Additionally, what lies beneath the surface of the water is equally important. Given their ecological, economic, and cultural importance, conserving and protecting coral reefs is essential because they provide us with things like:
- Biodiversity Hotspots: Coral reefs are often referred to as the "rainforests of the sea" due to their exceptional biodiversity. They support a vast array of marine species, including fish, invertebrates, and plants. Coral reefs are estimated to harbor up to one-quarter of all marine species, despite covering less than 1% of the ocean floor. They provide habitat, breeding grounds, and shelter for numerous marine organisms.
- Coastal Protection: Coral reefs act as natural barriers that protect coastlines from the impacts of storms, hurricanes, and erosion. The complex structure of coral reefs reduces the energy of incoming waves, dissipating their force and helping to prevent damage to coastal communities. In this way, coral reefs contribute to coastal resilience and provide important ecosystem services.
- Fisheries and Food Security: Coral reefs support thriving fisheries that provide a vital source of food and livelihoods for millions of people worldwide, particularly in developing countries. Fish and other marine organisms that rely on coral reefs for shelter and food contribute to local economies and food security.
- Tourism and Recreation: Coral reefs attract tourists from around the world who come to explore their beauty and biodiversity. Snorkeling, diving, and other forms of ecotourism centered around coral reefs generate significant economic benefits for coastal communities. Healthy coral reefs are crucial for sustaining tourism and recreational activities, contributing to local economies.
- Medicinal Resources: Coral reefs hold immense potential as a source of novel medicines and compounds. Many marine organisms found on coral reefs possess bioactive compounds that can be used in the development of new drugs and treatments for various diseases, including cancer, HIV, and bacterial infections. Protecting coral reefs ensures the preservation of these potential pharmaceutical resources.
- Carbon Sink: Coral reefs have the ability to store carbon dioxide (CO2), thus helping to mitigate climate change. Although they cover a relatively small area, they sequester large amounts of carbon. When coral reefs are damaged or destroyed, the stored carbon can be released back into the atmosphere, exacerbating climate change.
- Cultural and Spiritual Value: Coral reefs hold immense cultural and spiritual significance for many coastal communities. They are often deeply intertwined with local traditions, folklore, and identity. Protecting coral reefs is crucial for preserving cultural heritage and maintaining the connection between communities and the ocean.
Every year, the oceans and coral reefs face numerous threats including climate change (more specific - sun and cloud activity), ocean acidification, pollution, overfishing, and destructive fishing practices. We are on a journey of conservation and rehabilitation and when you shop with us, you take action on promoting better, sustainable practices to safeguard these invaluable ecosystems - with style! Big shout-outs to everyone involved - thank you for everything. Without you, there is no us.