By Hannah Bernard,
HWF Executive Director
Ocean pollution is a global problem, but we can help in our own backyard.
Visitors to Hawaii can help, too. Start by checking your sunscreen
label and choose non-nano zinc and/or titanium oxide which are
When we think of pollution we often think of trash. And HWF is
certainly addressing that issue through beach and reef cleanups. But chemicals
also hurt reefs and destroy water quality.
Scientific studies have shown that sunscreen ingredients like
oxybenzone can kill coral. Now that we know better, we must do better.
In recent years, we have lost 50 percent of
one species of coral in Hawaii due to coral bleaching caused by warming
water temperatures. Diving in Hawaii for the past 26 years, I have witnessed it with my own eyes. Globally, the ocean is changing. Locally, we
must do everything we can to protect our reefs any way we can.
According to the Environmental Working Group, governmental studies have also
linked oxybenzone to
allergies, hormone disruption and cell damage
in humans. What's bad for the reef is likely bad for us all.
Hawaii Wildlife Fund works to protect our reefs on multiple levels.
Our team spends a lot of time in the field but we also actively testify
as expert witnesses and educate people about enacting
laws to protect our island environment.
We started by supporting community-based fisheries management areas, then
we campaigned for Maui's plastic bag ban. We joined a lawsuit to prevent polluted
wastewater from entering the ocean. And recently, HWF's efforts
were integral to Maui becoming the first island to pass a
polystyrene food container ban. And now, Hawaii Island has passed the same ban.
Our most recent effort has been to educate and persuade our elected
officials to pass a ban on sunscreens that are hurting our reefs.
But we still need your support. Coral reefs are dying. We are
witnessing that firsthand here in Hawaii. Federal funds that protect our ocean are being
slashed. Now, more than ever, it's imperative that everyone get involved.
You can help in your own backyard. You can also help by
making a Donation today.
Me ke aloha pumehana,
HONOR DEPARTED WITH MEMORIAL
those who are passionate about the ocean, Hawaii Wildlife Fund offers
a unique giving opportunity. When a loved one passes away, in lieu of flowers or gifts, you may
donate in his or her honor through our website. The funds will continue HWF's efforts to help ensure a healthier ocean for future generations.
HWF MEMORIAL FUNDS