The following note from Avaaz seems timely as I’m just now beginning to read a book called The Unnatural History of the Sea by Callum Roberts. What we are currently doing to the oceans isn’t new, but the scale is massive. Please read the words below, sign the petition and help save our oceans now.

From Avaaz:

Our oceans are dying. Beset by pollution and demolition industrial fishing, the magical and bountiful deep blue is turning into a barren desert. But in the next 72 hours, governments are considering a new rescue plan — and we can help push it through.

Shockingly, governments spend billions subsidising the commercial fishing industry to pillage our seas. The new plan would end this scandal, craft a new treaty to protect the high seas, and establish critical marine protection reserves. But Canada, the US and Japan are threatening to water down or even kill it. Our only hope is to get behind Europe to champion the idea before it’s too late.

This crucial meeting is being held quietly behind closed doors at the UN. Let’s break open the talks and deliver massive global support to Europe to save our oceans. Sign the urgent petition and send this to everyone — once we hit 500,000 signatures, we’ll deliver the petition straight into the meeting:    

Our marine ecosystems are collapsing, and 85% of fish stocks are dangerously depleted. But no one is policing the trawlers’ plunder, and waste is poisoning our seas. Without an urgent intervention now, our grandchildren may study whales and coral reefs in their history lessons.

Scientists say that what we need right now is a bold plan that sets aside 20% of our blue planet as conservation areas by 2020, allowing the seas to replenish themselves for generations to come; ends subsidies to the industrial fishing complex; and creates a new protection agreement for the oceans outside of national boundaries.

Against the odds, the European Union is pushing for an agreement this week, and has the support of droves of developing countries. But the blockers are battling to limit the conservation areas and kick decisions on a global treaty far into the future. If they don’t get that, they are threatening to drown the plan completely before it is even born. This week is do or die for the oceans — our only hope is to massively and publicly get behind the Europeans in the next three days and drive an oceans rescue plan through. Sign this urgent petition now:   

We know we can win on oceans. Our community helped establish the largest marine reserve in the world and won protections for whales and tuna. But our oceans are dying faster than ever, and one by one species are coming closer to the brink. Let’s demand a comprehensive global oceans rescue plan now. 

With hope,

Stephanie, Iain, Allison, Alice, Ricken, Luca, Diego and the rest of the Avaaz team


International Policy: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Pew Environment Group)

Six steps for successful oceans negotiations (Greenpeace)

Our Endangered Oceans (Ecoworld)

Threats to Oceans and Coasts (WWF)


Subscribe to In Search of Simplicity by Email


Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives and the recently released Beyond the Search, books to lift the spirit and touch the heart. See


“In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”


Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit:


“In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”


Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews