Naeco was born in 2020 with the aim of presenting ourselves as a solution to the plastic waste problem. The origin of the brand lies in the Oceans and Seas, one of the natural spaces that suffer from this waste problem. If you read Naeco backwards, you'll be reading "OCEAN" in English, so for us, this day is very special as our own brand contains the essence of the ocean.
To commemorate such an important day, we want to delve into the importance of caring for our oceans and share the actions we carry out at Naeco.
Origin of World Oceans Day:
World Oceans Day has been celebrated since 2009, after the United Nations General Assembly approved Resolution 63/111 on December 5th, 2008. However, the term "World Oceans Day" was first heard in 1992 during the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, which took place from June 3rd to 14th. The proposal came from Canada, after the government organized the event "Oceans Day at Global Forum – The blue planet."
Although it was not officially recognized by the UN that year, since then, various associations such as The Ocean Project started developing campaigns and awareness activities about the importance of the oceans. After four years, the UN finally recognized World Oceans Day in 2008, and it began to be commemorated in 2009.
For 2023, the United Nations has organized a hybrid event with the theme "Oceanic Planet: The Tides are Changing," produced in collaboration with the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea of the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs and Oceanic Global. This year's program aims to highlight the wonders of the ocean as a vital source for human existence and other organisms that inhabit our planet. The virtual event, supported by Panerai, will include a mix of speeches, panels, presentations, art and film integrations, and performances. You can find more information about the event on the official website of the celebration: https://unworldoceansday.org.
The importance of oceans for human life:
We've always heard that "the sea is life," but why are oceans so important? Let's see why life wouldn't exist without this precious liquid.
Hosting the greatest biodiversity on the planet:
The seas and oceans cover more than 70% of the Earth's surface and host a great diversity of marine ecosystems that support thousands of animal and plant species. These ecosystems play a fundamental role in the ecological balance of the planet and in preserving marine and terrestrial biodiversity on Earth.
Furthermore, thanks to solar energy, a significant amount of water evaporates from the oceans daily, which then condenses and falls as precipitation, replenishing freshwater reserves on Earth. This process helps regulate the global temperature, maintaining balance in ecosystems and habitats throughout the planet.
Thermoregulatory Function of Temperature
Sand does not have the capacity to store heat, but seawater does. It is capable of absorbing solar radiation and retaining energy to release gradually at night, maintaining a cool climate. Considering that 71% of the Earth's surface is covered by oceans, we can calculate its global impact. Without this action by the oceans, the Earth would be at -18º Celsius at night.
According to an article published by Lijing Cheng, a professor at the International Center for Climate and Environmental Sciences in China, "the amount of heat we have put into the world's oceans over the past 25 years is equivalent to 3.6 billion atomic bomb explosions like the one in Hiroshima."
The ocean has absorbed over 93% of the extra heat generated by human actions since the 1970s. This demonstrates the importance of caring for our oceans and reducing our carbon footprint to prevent excessive global temperature rise.
It is said that oceans absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) and produce over 50% of the planet's oxygen. However, this is not done directly by the ocean but through phytoplankton, microorganisms that absorb carbon dioxide and transform it into oxygen through photosynthesis with the help of sunlight. It is estimated that these microorganisms release over 270 billion tons of oxygen into the atmosphere each year.
Source of Protein and Nutrients
In recent decades, fishery and aquaculture production have significantly increased, reaching nearly 200 million tons in recent years. This figure represents around 17% of the animal protein consumed by humans.
Fishing is not only a source of food but also an economic activity. According to a report by the FAO, nearly 60 million people worldwide are professionally engaged in fishing and aquaculture. It is a key sector for the global economy, and it is expected that by 2030, there will be around 40 million jobs linked to the oceans.
Furthermore, 90% of international trade is transported by sea.
In conclusion, water is responsible for making human life on Earth possible.
Why Should We Care for the Oceans?
It has become clear that seas are more important than we think. However, they currently face serious threats derived from human activity.
Next, we will analyze some of the most important challenges they must face:
- Overfishing: Excessive extraction of marine species is depleting fish populations' stability, which in turn affects the balance of ecosystems.
- Plastic Waste: Every year, 11 million tons of plastic waste end up in our seas. This pollution affects marine fauna and ecosystems, and it can have negative consequences for human health as many animals mistake plastics for food.
- Global Warming: The burning of fuels since industrialization has had a negative impact on the entire planet, causing uncontrolled temperature increases and disrupting the climate across all continents. Greenhouse gases have led to polar ice melting, sea-level rise, and a decrease in ocean salinity.
- Degradation of Marine Habitats: Pollution, climate change, and other factors are contributing to the degradation of marine habitats, posing a threat to thousands of plant and animal species. Thousands of plant and animal species are becoming extinct each year due to waste and pollutants deposited on the seabed. 50% of coral reefs are destroyed.
- Eutrophication: Through this process, the excess of inorganic nutrients from human activities causes an algal bloom in the water, creating dead zones devoid of oxygen where aquatic life becomes impossible.
Therefore, it is more necessary than ever to save the planet and our oceans. That is why events like World Oceans Day in 2023 are crucial in raising awareness among the population.
Naeco and its Consciousness for Ocean Conservation
As citizens, both individually and collectively, we have an obligation to participate in the care and preservation of the oceans in various ways. In Naeco, we have managed to process 3,240 tons of recycled material in the first quarter of 2023, giving plastic waste a second life and manufacturing 442,554 recycled and recyclable products.
Our recycling work has prevented the emission of a total of 8,884 tons of CO2 equivalent. This means that, in a linear economy model, these tons would have been emitted additionally if the materials were virgin and discarded at the end of their useful life. Our products prevent the emission of 188 tons of CO2 due to the lightweight and efficiency in design and our plastic material compared to conventional products. You can find this information and much more on our transparency portal at https://love.naeco.com.
Furthermore, we are committed to the environment, and sustainability is one of the fundamental pillars of our philosophy. All our products are designed to be 100% recyclable at the end of their life cycle, which helps reduce carbon footprint, pollution, and waste in landfills. You will find all this information on our Eco-label.
Happy World Oceans Day!