boot Düsseldorf is presenting the “ocean tribute” Award for the second time
Application portal has been opened
High-profile activities that promote ocean protection are important for the success of World Oceans Day that is taking place today. People like the 51-year-old Frenchman Ben Lecomte, who is swimming the marathon distance of 9,000 kilometres across the Pacific from Japan to California to highlight the problem of marine debris and whose aim is – in his own words – “to attract public attention all over the world”, are genuine heroes of our time. Lecomte’s tough swim through the Pacific, which is taking him right through the middle of the “great Pacific garbage patch” with its almost 80,000 tonnes of plastic debris, can be followed on the website www.thelongestswim.com.
boot Düsseldorf has also been supporting international ocean protection projects and activities for many years now and has a successful and well-known ambassador in the British sailor and ocean activist Emily Penn. Since 2017, the “love your ocean” stand at the trade fair has in addition presented ocean protection activities and ideas, provided advice and information about water quality or has invited child researchers to get involved. 2017 was the year in which the “ocean tribute” Award was launched too; it was presented for the first time at boot 2018. The prizewinners this year were the Green Boats project, The Ocean Foundation and the logistics company Fairtransport. Ocean protection projects and organisations from all over the world can already apply for the “ocean tribute” Award 2019. The application portal for the Award https://oceantributeaward.boot.de/ has been opened and high-impact projects that as a result lead to substantial improvements in ocean and water quality, that integrate as many people as possible in their activities and network with many other players are invited to apply for the prestigious prize. The Award is backed by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and the German Ocean Foundation, in addition to sponsorship by the underwater jet-ski manufacturer Seabob.
“boot has adopted the right approach in launching the ocean tribute Award. We have been supporting projects and activists that are dedicated to ocean and water protection for many years now. Establishing a prize was simply the logical next step in our involvement. Particularly in view of the fact that we have capable backers and experts on board with our partners from Monaco and the German Ocean Foundation”, explains boot Director Petros Michelidakis, who adds: “Our guideline in this context is the sustainability principle issued by the United Nations; the objective is to encourage the preservation as well as the sustainable development and use of oceans and marine resources.
The “ocean tribute” Award therefore focusses on projects that aim to increase ocean cleanness by reducing the infeed of debris and nutrients or to promote more sustainable management by improving the protection of ocean or coastal ecosystems and by taking measures to restore them. Other priorities are ideas that help to reduce acidification of the oceans, research and development projects that contribute to ocean protection and preservation with the help of innovative technologies or measures that effectively regulate fishing industry operations and implement scientifically sound management plans and thus lead to an increase in global fish populations. Applications are also invited from outstanding PR projects that draw public attention to problems and propose sustainable solutions for interaction with our oceans.
The Award is presented in three categories: society, industry and science. Individuals, organisations and institutions can enter their water protection projects, which are evaluated by a jury of experienced experts. They include Monika Breuch-Moritz (meteorologist, Director of the German Maritime and Hydrographic Agency BSH), H.E. Bernard Fautrier (minister and former ambassador, Vice-President of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation), Professor Emeritus Dr Hartmut Graßl (climate research scientist, Chairman of the Federation of German Scientists, former Director of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology), Professor Emeritus Dr Michael Orbach (anthropologist and prominent US maritime policy consultant, Duke University), Robert Marx (President of the Association of the German Water Sports Industry and of boot Düsseldorf) and – representing Messe Düsseldorf – CEO Werner Matthias Dornscheidt.
boot in figures: There were 1,923 exhibitors from 68 different countries in 2018. boot takes up 220,000 square metres in 16 halls. 247,000 visitors came to Düsseldorf from 102 countries. More than 2,000 journalists reported live from the biggest water sports trade fair in the world. 110,000 people experienced “THE WAVE” and 1,500 of them dared to surf the 1.50 m high and 9 m wide standing wave themselves.