Making Every Difference
Directed by: Janiel Li
Audio: Daniel Seidman
Acting: Jenny Seo
Drawings: Jung Huh
Sponsored by: Lisa Wu
Pictures: National Geographic
Music: Microsoft Themes
NARRATOR: One morning a man walked along the beach covered in starfish washed up by a storm. He saw a young girl picking up the starfish and tossing them back into the sea.
As he approached he couldn't help but ask - why bother? There are too many – you won't make much of a difference. She picked up another starfish and said I'll make a difference to this one.
In the modern world, all ocean events are just a touch away from us as the media links us to the global situation.
Many of us remember the events of the magnitude 9.0 earthquake that shook the Indian basin in 2004. The resulting tsunamis killed over 220,000 people but with extensive news coverage of the aftermath, the entire world reacted.
Ocean related damages involving society however are not always a one-way exchange.
When the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded last April, over 200 million gallons of oil eventually leaked into the Gulf of Mexico. That amount could have generated enough heating oil for 13,000 homes for a year. Yet it ended up causing unfathomable economic and ecological damages.
The media stirs us to respond to such issues. Sometimes we fundraise, other times we protest. But what about the issues not covered by the headlines, the ones that happen beneath our gaze?
To see them, we must first dive back into the ocean – a source of tremendous natural diversity. This ecosystem supports billions of individuals worldwide. Yet human actions may destroy entire ocean habitats. For instance, coral bleaching due to human related activities has become a growing concern as climate change threatens over 2/3s of the world's reefs.
On land, damage extends to the coasts where littering is commonplace. Even though such problems may not be breaking news stories, the condition of our oceans will only continue to deteriorate if we choose to disregard them.
We need the ocean, but the ocean also needs us. So even if the difference is little, let us start by making one.