For us scuba divers, the mighty, magnificent, and mysterious ocean is our playground. For some, it’s also a home away from home. In honour of World Oceans Day (8 June), we celebrate all the reasons to love and respect our deep blue haven and its precious inhabitants.
#1 Our oceans cover about 70 percent of the Earth’s surface.
And according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, we’ve only managed to explore less than five percent of it so far. It’s worth protecting something so vast and untouched, don’t you think?
#2 The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean, and it makes up about 30 percent of the planet’s surface.
You’ve probably heard all about the amazing dive sites and destinations in this part of the world, but sadly, part of it is home to the world’s biggest landfill.
#3 Approximately 70 percent of the oxygen we breathe is produced by the marine plants in our oceans.
#4 It’s where you’ll find the biggest living organism on Earth – The Great Barrier Reef.
Which, by the way, is over 2,000 kilometres long and can even be seen from outer space.
#5 It is estimated that over one million species live in the ocean, and between one-third and two-thirds of them remain unknown.
It’s incredible, but it does make you wonder what the heck else is watching you on your dives…
#6 Coral reefs cover less than one percent of the ocean floor, but support about 25 percent of marine life.
Seriously, that’s a real superpower right there.
#7 Also, did you know that coral is actually a colony of small organisms with porous limestone skeletons, which is great for helping mend human bones?
Yup, more superpowers.
#8 The longest mountain range in the world is found underwater.
Stretching over 56,000 kilometres, the Mid-Oceanic Ridge runs along the centre of the ocean basins and features peaks that tower over those in the Alps.
#9 The deepest known place on the planet is called Challenger Deep, and it’s located in the Mariana Trench.
It lies 11 kilometres below sea level. Need a clearer picture? If you were to plonk Mount Everest down in the area, there would still be about two kilometres to go from its peak before you reach the deepest part of the Mariana Trench.
#10 The ocean is our life support system.
It holds a whopping 97 percent of Earth’s water, helps regulate our climate, and absorbs carbon dioxide. Let’s do our part to keep it in tip-top condition so it can continue to be there for years, decades, and centuries to come.