SEA CHANGE Our Ocean Our Health

Sea Change is a EU H2020 funded project that aims to establish a fundamental “Sea Change” in the way European citizens view their relationship with the sea, by empowering them, as Ocean Literate citizens, to take direct and sustainable action towards a healthy ocean and seas, healthy communities and ultimately a healthy planet.

Most European citizens are not aware of the full extent of the medical, economic, social, political and environmental importance of the sea to Europe and indeed to the rest of the world. Many of us are not aware of how our day-to-day actions can have a cumulative effect on the health of the ocean and seas – a necessary resource that must be protected for all life on the planet Earth to exist. In other words, European citizens lack a sense of “Ocean Literacy” – an understanding of the ocean’s influence on us and our influence on the ocean.

By using the concept of Ocean Literacy, Sea Change will create a deeper understanding amongst European citizens of how their health depends on the health of our seas and ocean. Sea Change will move to bring about real actions using behavioural and social change methodologies.  The ocean makes planet Earth a habitable place to live and the marine environment is a source of vital human health benefits.

The ocean is vitally important to Europe. The 28 Member States have between them the largest maritime territory in the world (approximately 3.9 million km2) and all of us depend on the ocean and its resources. Despite the importance of Europe’s sea areas, their sustainable development and protection faces threats from natural and human pressures. By better understanding the relationships between us and the sea, we will be better able to protect these precious resources.

Building upon the latest social research on citizen and stakeholder attitudes, perceptions and values, the Sea Change partnership will design and implement mobilisation activities focused on education, community, governance actors and directly targeted at citizens. These actions will be assessed for their effectiveness which, in turn, will allow the project to improve its techniques and spread a “Sea Change” in behaviour across Europe.

The Sea Change objectives will be achieved by a closely interlinked programme that will include engaging with schools, citizens, decision makers and industry representatives with the idea that we ALL share one ocean and that this ocean is fragile. 

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