World Ocean Day 2022: date of celebration


Marta Fava

09 May 2022

The ocean covers more than 70% of Earth’s surface, and being the largest ecosystem on our planet, it functions as a life support system for all its inhabitants.

The idea for a World Ocean Day was proposed for the first time by Canada at the Earth Summit that took place in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. Its aim would be celebrating our world’s ocean and our personal connection to the sea, as well as raising awareness on the essential role it plays in our lives and the overall health of the environment.

World Ocean Day has since been celebrated by many countries around the world, and was then officially recognized by the United Nations in 2008. After that, the number of countries and organizations who take part in World Ocean Day is growing each year in recognition of the essential role the ocean plays for the sustainability of our future.

Let’s discover all the details you need to know about World Ocean Day 2022. In this article you’ll find out about the date, the themes of this year’s celebration, the activities that will take place both online and in real life, and some interesting facts and figures about World Ocean Day.

When is World Ocean Day 2022?

World Ocean Day will take place on June 8th, 2022. In fact, June 8 is the fixed date for this celebration, and it stays the same year after year, so you can save it on your calendar.

The celebration will be worldwide, with many in-person and online events, lectures and activities. If you want to do something for the ocean now, though, you do not have to wait, there are a lot of actions and events throughout the year.

What will be the theme of 2022

The 2022 theme for the World Ocean Day is Revitalization: Collective Action for the Ocean: “Shedding light on the communities, ideas, and solutions that are working together to protect and revitalize the ocean and everything it sustains.”

The United Nations Division hosts the celebration for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, Office of Legal Affairs, and it is produced in partnership with nonprofit Oceanic Global.

The focus of this event will be safeguarding our ocean, its ecosystems and biodiversity and building climate change resiliency. We need to conserve our wonderful marine resources for future generations.

Previous years’ themes

Here is a list of the themes addressed in the previous years. You will find a lot of resources online if you want to dig deeper into them!

  • 2021: The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods
  • 2020: Innovation for a Sustainable Ocean
  • 2019: Gender and the Ocean
  • 2018: Clean Our Ocean
  • 2017: Our Oceans, Our Future

What are the activities?

This year’s event is the first hybrid celebration in the history of World Ocean Day. This means it will be hosted in-person at the UN New York Headquarters and broadcasted live around the globe.

All the activities have the objective of developing a global movement of people for the ocean. It aims at mobilizing and uniting the population to work on a project for the sustainable management of the planet’s oceans.

Online Events

The online talks and lectures held at the NY UN headquarters will be broadcasted live all over the world. Tune in if you want to listen to thought-leaders, celebrities, experts and members of the community discuss the most recent topics related to our oceans, to inspire, solve problems and ignite collaborative change.


A celebratory concert will be held at the end of World Ocean Day, featuring world-renowned artists. This year, the concert will take place in person in NYC and broadcasted live. Do not miss it!

Photo Competition

Ellen Cuylaerts and a jury of globally-recognized artists and personalities will curate the UN World Ocean Day Photo Competition, which is a great opportunity for photographers to show the beauty of our ocean and raise awareness on the techniques and solutions adopted all over the world for its revitalization and care.

All Year Round Events

World Ocean Day happens on June 8th , but that is not the only day you can dedicate to the ocean and the incredible role it plays in our lives. There are plenty of events that you can take part in throughout the year to support this cause.

Here is a list of events from the World Ocean Day website. You can attend lectures, sign petitions, participate in local cleanups, and even organize your own event dedicated to our blue planet.

Get involved and share your passion with your friends, family and community. Together, we will make a difference!

Who is the initiator of World Ocean Day?

As we mentioned above, World Ocean Day was first proposed in 1992 during the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, at the urging of Canadian. Then, it was essential to institute a day to raise awareness about the benefits humankind and the whole planet derive from the ocean.

The proposal was inspired by an event that took place that day, “OCEANS DAY AT GLOBAL FORUM – THE BLUE PLANET”. Its organizer was the Oceans Institute of Canada, supported by the Canadian Government, and the speaker who suggested it was Judith Swan, an internationally respected figure in the marine law sector and Executive Director of the Oceans Institute of Canada (OIC).

Many countries started celebrating it and, in 2008, the United Nations General Assembly officially recognized it and started celebrating, from 2009, on June 8th.

Why it’s important to celebrate

A celebration of the importance of the ocean for all life on Earth is one of the best ways to engage with the community and spread the word about what can be done to solve the issues we are facing.

Here are some of the reasons you should care about the ocean, and celebrate it every year on the 8th of June!

  • The ocean contains 94% of all the planet’s wildlife. Nowadays, however, it is polluted and marine debris can harm animals causing suffocation, entanglement, laceration, infections and internal injuries. Furthermore, floating plastic and other items help transport invasive species, which leads to threats for marine ecosystems.
  • The Ocean generate more than half the oxygen we breathe on land: tiny plants that live on the ocean’s surface produce roughly 50-80% of the planet’s oxygen through photosynthesis. The water is also, what we call a carbon sink, which means that it absorbs more CO2 than it releases.
  • The ocean regulates the climate on a global scale. Taking action to save our ocean is therefore of the utmost importance if we want to reduce the impact of climate change and build a more sustainable future.
  • Ocean pollution also harms human beings. Carcinogenic microplastics have entered the food chain, and toxic contaminants pose a serious health-hazard.

What are you waiting for? Take action to save our ocean!

What you can do to support World Ocean Day

Of course, World Oceans Day is a global event aimed at celebrating our oceans and their importance in our lives, but there are plenty of activities that can be carried out and promoted locally to support ocean life around our coasts.

  • Reduce your use of plastic items, especially disposable ones. You can switch from single-use plastic bags to reusable ones, or stop using disposable plastic cups, plates; cutlery and bottles (bring your own!). Also, avoid useless plastic wrappings and buy food and cleaning products in bulk.
  • Reduce your carbon footprint. CO2 makes our ocean more and more acidic, which contributes to the loss of corals and the destruction of marine ecosystems. You can reduce your footprint by riding a bike instead of driving, saving energy, or becoming vegan! (Yes, industrial farming releases huge amounts of CO2 and methane.) CO2
  • Take part in or organize local cleanups! You can volunteer to spend a day with friends actually cleaning up the ocean. It is hard work, but it is essential to do it to prevent debris from entering the waterways and getting all the way to the ocean.