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Plenary Four: Blurring the Boundaries – understanding, valuing the Ocean

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    • #45315
      Munju M Ravindra
      Participant

      Hi folks – some Qs from the chat that we didn’t get to in our panel:

      Q: In terms of blurring the boundaries, how could park organizations do a better job at bringing together marine and terrestrial systems — to demonstrate and support their interconnectedness and value to our wellbeing?

      Q: The oceans are relevant to everyone as they cover more than 70% of the planet and drive everyone’s climate through the major occillations. So even if you live in Ontario or Saskatchewam your life experience is determined by the health of the oceans. If you live closer the connection is easier to visualize since you are near it.

      Q: Any tips on communicating the ways the ocean is connected to land and human well being to park visitors, which can sometimes feel a ‘science heavy’ topic to try and educate the public on? Especially for people who don’t have access to a personal connection to the ocean?

      Q: How do you make Marine parks “visible” – they’re underwater/not really visible from shore – so someone that’s not a diver can ‘see’ them? I don’t think signage really does it…

      And a great comment from Jill: I’d like to note that the social sciences are not “soft sciences”. We need to stop perpetuating this notion or language within parks communities.

    • #45316
      Munju M Ravindra
      Participant

      I also don’t want to miss some of the comments/questions that were addressed in the panel, as it would be great to discuss them further:

      Indicators:
      – what are the communities envisioning as indicators of their well being ?
      – If community and Indigenous knowledge inform ecological integrity indicators and research priorities, then you don’t need to think of things so separately.
      – bird counts to highlight potential habitat concerns and looking into what might be happening as a result

      • #45318
        Munju M Ravindra
        Participant

        Antoine Plouffe Leboeuf: Adding cultural integrity in the selection of the proper indicators of ecological integrity might be a way to go

    • #45317
      Meaghen McCord
      Participant

      Q: In terms of blurring the boundaries, how could park organizations do a better job at bringing together marine and terrestrial systems — to demonstrate and support their interconnectedness and value to our wellbeing?

      A: there are so many creative ways of doing this. A few examples could include:
      1. having visitors focus on their breathing in an interp program. Have them breathe 10 times, then tell them that 5 of those breaths used oxygen provided by the ocean.
      2. using a web of yarn or fishing line: assign people roles (fish, fisher, bird, person living in Toronto) and have them make a giant connected foodweb. Then you start to remove one role at a time and can physically see what happens to the integrity of the “system”. This can get people thinking more about connectedness.
      3. simple Q&A sessions that just engage folks with interesting facts about how the ocean is connected to all we do. You can even do a source to sea program: e.g., https://www.siwi.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Source-to-sea-guide_webb.pdf

    • #45320
      Noémie Roy
      Participant

      Thanks to everyone for your great questions, comments, and interactions! I feel very luck to have participated in such a dynamic summit.

      I would like to answer the following question: Any tips on communicating the ways the ocean is connected to land and human well being to park visitors, which can sometimes feel a ‘science heavy’ topic to try and educate the public on? Especially for people who don’t have access to a personal connection to the ocean?

      I grew up inland in Gatineau and I often face the same challenge myself when trying to express the importance of the ocean to the people around me. You can encourage visitors to think about ways they connect to the ocean beyond science, including history, arts, sports, industry, food, etc.

      – Where do they come from? How did their ancestors travel on the land? In a canoe, you can reach the ocean from virtually anywhere in Canada.
      – What type of seafood do they enjoy to eat? Where does it come from?
      – Where are their belongings from? Were they transported by ship?
      – If you close your eyes and think of a waterfall, or the waves crashing on the beach, how does that make you feel?
      – Can they think of a piece of art that they like that contains a representation of water? Why is water so often present in arts? Why is it so important to us?

      You can also talk about inland seas that used to cover a large part of Canada and how we can still see signs of this today. For instance, a beluga subfossil was found in St-Félix de Valois, QC, an area that is very far from the sea today but that once covered by the Champlain sea.

      I hope this help!

    • #45321
      Gabrielle Beaulieu
      Participant

      Q: In terms of blurring the boundaries, how could park organizations do a better job at bringing together marine and terrestrial systems — to demonstrate and support their interconnectedness and value to our wellbeing?
      I think this is a case of expanding our ‘practiced’ knowledge systems to look at the natural ambassadors for blurring these boundaries: the stories of American eel, Salmon sp., shorebirds and insects that consistently utilize habitats that already have blurred boundaries . Covid19 has really demonstrated the value of these spaces by beckoning people to spend time outside to clear their minds, de-stress and re-evaluate the importance of nature and the relationship we all want to have with it going forward.

      Q: The oceans are relevant to everyone as they cover more than 70% of the planet and drive everyone’s climate through the major occillations. So even if you live in Ontario or Saskatchewam your life experience is determined by the health of the oceans. If you live closer the connection is easier to visualize since you are near it.
      https://youtu.be/XrC4vDcWmxk This documentary, many others as well as supporting different forms of art to express the interconnectedness of land and sea are one way to continue the conversation and incite curiosity.

    • #45322
      Hali Moreland
      Participant

      Q: what are the communities envisioning as indicators of their well being ?

      A: I’ve only begun some very preliminary discussions with coastal community knowledge holders in NMCAs across Canada, but there are still some common threads. The most recurring theme in terms of indicators is ACCESS. People really want to be able to continue getting out onto the water and coastal places that they hold dear. Measuring access can be challenging but it’s a really important aspect that has come up again and again.

      A few other indicators that have come up through discussions are social well-being, economic well-being, local foods, and decision-making capacity. All these indicators are quite broad, which is great, because sites can then tailor specific measurements based on their local priorities and concerns.

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