Today’s podcast focuses on an article in the Huffington Post written by Anisa Kamadoli Costa, Chairman and President of Tiffany & Co Foundation. She also serves as the Chief Sustainability Officer for the same company. In a guest column titled “It’s time to save our oceans. Here’s how we’re doing it,” Anisa describes the current plight of our oceans and how Tiffany & Co. have taken action.
This article is noteworthy for a couple reasons. First, I don’t think many people are aware that since 2000, Tiffany & Co. have granted over $10 million to organizations like The Pew Environmental Group, Mission Blue, and Oceans 5. While it may seem an unusual cause for a jewelry company to get involved in, preventing the decline of our ocean habitats will have beneficial effects to the entire planet.
And that brings me to my second reason for featuring this article, which is that you don’t need to live on the coast or love fishing to get involved in ocean conservation. Do you like money? Well, declines in fisheries stocks and coral populations will translate to economic declines for countries that rely on these resources. Do you like being healthy? Coral reef habitats are a serious consideration for sources of potential new medicines against cancer, inflammation, asthma, and many other common and serious illnesses. By making ocean conservation a priority, Tiffany & Co. made a bold statement to the rest of the private sector. You should care about the health of our oceans because they are vital to our continued life on this planet. It’s that simple.
The one issue I have with this article is the lack of citations. Anisa brings up some bold statistics related to declines in fisheries and the economic impact of healthy marine ecosystems, though there is no link to the sources of these figures. The best we have is a reference to a September WWF report. While I’m not necessarily discounting the accuracy of these statistics, when you’re claiming that “the population of marine vertebrate dropped by almost 50 percent in just 40 years,” and “increasing marine protected areas to 30 percent — from its current 3.4 percent — could generate up to $920 billion and create more than 180,000 jobs between 2015 and 2050,” you better have the source of these numbers available so readers can verify the validity of these claims independently.
Enjoy the Podcast!