People need air to breathe, water to drink, food to eat, new medicines, a climate we can live in, beauty, inspiration and recreation. We need to know we belong to something bigger than ourselves. We want a better future for those we care about. We also want a better future for those who balances this eco system.
Because the oceans are the largest ecosystems on Earth, they are the Earth’s largest life support systems. To survive and prosper, we all need healthy oceans. Oceans generate half of the oxygen people breathe. Oceans provide a sixth of the animal protein people eat. They’re the most promising source of new medicines to combat cancer, pain and bacterial diseases. Living oceans absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reduce the impact of climate change.
400 years back, there were whales where one could walk on their backs from bay to bay. As years passed by, their number were drastically lowered. Whales should be protected not to save them, but to save ourselves. Whales are ecosystem engineers of the ocean and are the cause for fertilizing and enriching the nutrients in oceans. They act as carbon sinks who reduce the impact of climate change.
Asha De Vos, senior TED Fellow, dedicated to increasing awareness about Northern Indian Ocean blue whales. She is being the advocate of contextualizing conservation, particularly in the marine realm, she is making sure people know why we need to protect the oceans and how healthy oceans means healthy us.
In her TED Talk, she shared the idea of why we should care about whales.
First, whales poop — as they dive to feed and resurface to breathe, they create enormous fecal plumes that feed the phytoplankton that form the basis of the entire marine food chain. Whales also transport these nutrients horizontally through the oceans when they migrate. And after death, whale carcasses fall to the bottom of the sea, feeding 400-odd species and acting as carbon sinks that delay global warming. So let’s save the whales again, she says — not just for their sake, but for ours.