As we recognize the deep blue that covers more than 70% of our earth’s surface on World Oceans Day, we also praise the heroes who play a major role in the conservation and discovery of the mysteriously vast sea.

June 8th has become a day to honor the ocean in all its wonders, its unreal habitants, and simply the fact that it connects each and every one of us. But we would know nothing about the salty sea if it weren’t for the people who committed themselves to discovering and sharing as much as possible; people like Sylvia Earle. Not only known for being one of the most inspiring women worldwide, she is a renowned marine biologist who changed our knowledge of the ocean forever.

Starting at a young age, Earle felt the need to discover everything about the underwater paradise we call the ocean. With a lifetime spent passionately promoting the protection of the sea, she has acquired nicknames such as Her Deepness, Hero for the Planet, and Joan of Arc of the Ocean. Swimming through over 7,000 hours of dive time, we can only assume the impact that Earle has made through discoveries and love for the sea.

One way we can see Earle’s impact is through Mission Blue, a documentary displaying the success of the woman who changed oceanography. Mission Blue not only tells Earle’s story from the beginning, but more importantly tells us how we have the power to change things today. Earle speaks of the “Hope Spots” (marine protected areas) that can be established through Mission Blue, to help restore marine life to its best.

Each and everyone one of us can learn from the passion and work Sylvia Earle has put into what she loves. Whether it be picking up a plastic bag at the beach or simply doing some research, learning about the water that preserves our planet is crucial. Through our vast amount of resources, we are the ones who can change the world. So in Earle’s wise words, ”This is the moment. Our decisions, our actions, will shape everything that follows.”

By Cianda Bourrel