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Voice for the Ocean – Time to take stock

The objective was to place the voice of the citizens and the ocean at the heart of the new European parliamentary mandate. After the elections, Surfrider Foundation Europe’s one-year Voice for the Ocean campaign is coming to an end, and provides the occasion to review the milestones of this campaign, which has significantly enriched our political advocacy work.

7,000 participating citizens!

Launched in June 2018, the Voice for the Ocean campaign opened with extensive citizen consultation. In eight months, nearly 7,000 participants expressed their environmental concerns for the Ocean. The international dimension of the consultation was attested to by the 59 different nationalities of the contributing citizens. These participation figures now allow Surfrider to claim legitimacy and representativeness regarding the credibility of the results obtained.

Regarding these results, 3 priorities particularly stood out among the 8 topics that were proposed for consultation. Microplastic pollution of the oceans was predominantly imposed as the main concern. Then came the issues related to fossil fuels and offshore exploitation as well as the ecological responsibility of maritime transport.

Promising succes

As a result of the consultation, Surfrider conducted an analysis of the programs listed in the European elections in 5 EU countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Spain and Portugal. Using an interactive map, Surfrider highlighted the lists that have mentioned political solutions in favour of the ocean in their programme. The purpose of this analysis was not only to enlighten the citizen but also to encourage people to vote to ensure that the ocean would be considered more fully in the decisions of the European Parliament.

The Voice for the Ocean campaign has strengthened Surfrider’s institutional action in the European Union. Given the strategic nature of the environment on a European level, Surfrider Foundation will continue to be actively involved. The political advocacy defended by the association remains ensured in European political bodies, particularly parliamentary ones. 

Striving to protect the ocean is work for each moment and must not stop now. This is why Surfrider Europe will also mobilize to weigh in on the international negotiations of the G7 summit, scheduled for 23 to 26 August in Biarritz.