World Oceans Day will be observed on mobile phones and computer screens this June 8. By going online, it will avoid the fate of other environmental events that have been canceled due to the coronavirus [VIDEO].

Two of the scheduled activities are a Virtual Ocean Literacy Summit, a writing project for young people, and Our Ocean in COVID-19, a project to document how the pandemic has caused changes in maritime activities. Information about World Oceans Day is available from the United Nations website unworldoceansday.org.

A site with a similar web address, worldoceansday.org, is maintained by the World Oceans Day Youth Advisory Council.

This group is gathering signatures on an online petition calling for 30 percent of the world's land and oceans to be placed under protection by 2030.

This year's World Oceans Day comes at a time when the coronavirus has interrupted many diplomatic efforts to protect the environment. It is also a time when preparations are being made for a 10-year effort to concentrate attention on the need to reverse damage to the oceans.

Events about Oceans Nixed

This year had been expected to be an "ocean super year," noted The Economist Group World Ocean Initiative on its website.

The initiative, sponsored by the publisher of The Economist, has a list on its website of the events which have been called off as a result of the pandemic. These events include the World Ocean Summit in Tokyo, the UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon, the UN Conference on Marine Biodiversity of Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction in New York, and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, COP26, in Glasgow.

According to the World Ocean Initiative website, there may be a silver lining in the delay of diplomatic efforts to protect the oceans. The World Ocean Initiative referred to the possibility that US President Donald Trump might lose the November presidential election to his opponent Joe Biden, who was seen as more supportive of environmental measures.

The initiative website observed that Biden had indicated he would bring the United States back into the Paris Agreement on climate change.

The Ocean Decade, 2021-2030

The UN has designated the years 2021-2030 to be the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, or the Ocean Decade, for short. Plans for the decade are being put together by the UNESCO's Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission.

There is a website oceandecade.org where people can find out how they are able to take part in the planned activities. The objectives of the Ocean Decade are explained in the booklet The Science We Need For The Ocean We Want, which can be downloaded from that site.

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