Happy Earth Day from Sea Shepherd to all of our supporters and volunteers from around this precious planet we call home! While Earth Day is one day that serves to remind us of our responsibility to the Earth, here at Sea Shepherd, every day is Earth Day! We never stop in our mission to defend the oceans because all life on Earth depends on living and healthy ocean ecosystems.
As we reflect on Earth Day today, we would also like to recognize that this past Sunday marks four years since the disastrous BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico. As Sea Shepherd Founder Captain Paul Watson says, “I’m not an eco-terrorist; I don’t work for BP.” Indeed, some have called the Deepwater Horizon spill the single worst act of terrorism ever perpetrated upon the U.S. Marine life and ecosystems of the Gulf are still struggling to recover from its effects to this day and will continue to struggle for decades to come. Sea Shepherd’s Operation Gulf Rescue campaign was launched immediately after the spill in 2010 and worked to support the rescue and recovery of Gulf ecosystems and marine life. Sea Shepherd has also worked with other NGOs and government agencies, as well as individuals and businesses from the Gulf region. Though the oil spill may no longer be dominating headlines, Sea Shepherd’s clients in the Gulf of Mexico still need us, and we will not abandon them or their home. This summer we will join Sea Shepherd Global and our partner Ocean Alliance and return to the Gulf of Mexico to conduct Operation Toxic Gulf, a long-term study of the devastating impact of BP’s Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and the millions of tons of dispersants unleashed on the Gulf which scientists say was a far worse environmental disaster than the oil spill itself. One has only to see the continuing devastation in the region — from dead adult and stillborn baby dolphins to shrimp with no eyes, from marine animals with tumors to widening ocean dead zones — to know that our work in the Gulf is far from done.
On Earth Day and beyond, please be mindful that what we do to the oceans, we ultimately do to ourselves, the planet and to future generations of all species on Earth.