Was there a key moment for you when you thought that we should just care much more about the sea?
There are actually two moments. Far away from my beloved North Sea, we were in Panama on the San Blas Islands, a group of 365 largely uninhabited Caribbean islands in the Kuna Indian territory. At first this seemed like a pure, untouched natural paradise to us - until we discovered all the buried plastic garbage on the beach. The whole island was surrounded by big blue sacks that were washed free by the current and carried out into sea. This clearly showed us that there is a huge problem in every corner of the earth.
I had a much closer experience here on the coast, on our new favourite island Juist: Here, the effects of climate change are already clearly visible, which were brought home to us during a mudflat hike: for example, mussels, an important food source for some waders, can no longer successfully reproduce in the mudflats at these temperatures... There are so many construction sites and problems that the sea is currently experiencing, and I would like to help.
What does marine protection mean to you?
Without the sea there is no life - the oceans cover about 70 percent of the earth's surface and are of crucial importance for us humans. We must work together to combat overfishing and littering.
What can we all do in our everyday lives to protect the sea?
The truth of the matter is that the concept of environmental protection is already very much in evidence in Germany and Europe. The fight against packaging waste is already well-advanced here. However, I think there is still a lot of room for improvement in the food and clothing industries. For example, you can choose fish from sustainable breeding at the frozen food shelf and pay attention to natural materials in clothing. After all, every synthetic fiber is also plastic, which is either burnt and ends up in the atmosphere as CO2, or perhaps at some point as a microplastic in the stomach of a fish.
Your secret tip for the perfect day at the sea?
The most important thing is to consciously take your time so that you can let nature take its effect on you. Walking for hours, breathing in the fresh sea air and appreciating life!
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