What is Ocean Literacy?


We want to support as many people as possible to have the chance to become Ocean Literate

But what does that mean? 

An ocean literate society understands the impact that individuals and the collective have on the ocean and in turn, its impact on our lives and well-being.

More than just a concept, ocean literacy is a fundamental means to enhance ocean knowledge, build connections in people’s lives and support and encourage citizens and stakeholders to act in a positive way for our Ocean. 

Ocean literacy is a way to advance sustainable practices, develop policy, promote responsible citizenship and encourage young people to be involved in the future. 

Ocean literacy is essential to protect the ocean for future generations.


There are different dimensions to Ocean literacy

Brennan et al. (2019) link defined the following six dimensions: 

  • awareness
  • knowledge
  • attitudes
  • communication
  • behaviour 
  • activism

The ocean literacy principles are a great platform to build understanding about the ocean.  Here they are….

  1. Earth has one Ocean with many features.
  2. The Ocean and life in the ocean shape the features of earth.
  3. The Ocean is a major influence on weather and climate.
  4. The Ocean makes earth habitable.
  5. The Ocean supports a great diversity of life and ecosystems.
  6. The Ocean and humans are inextricably linked.
  7. The Ocean is largely unexplored.

You can find out more about the origins of the ocean literacy principles and framework here and here.