$1 For The Reef
Coral reefs around the world need our help. In the past 50 years, global warming, overfishing and land use have killed over 50% of reefs worldwide, compromising marine biodiversity and millions of human livelihoods. Today, sunscreen pollution is part of the problem. For this reason, for every product you purchase, P4O donates up to $1 to reef conservation initiatives worldwide in an effort to reverse the damages done. We believe our sun care solutions - and the people that use them - are a driving force to preserve these vital ecosystems worldwide.
REEF & SKIN SAFE
There is a noticeable absence of sun care products capable of addressing the collateral damages of sun exposure (e.g. pigmentation, dehydration, pH stress, ageing), while providing effective sun protection and ticking the boxes of respect for health and Nature. People4Ocean aims to provide sun care at its best, with clean ingredients and honest products. We approach skin as a living ecosystem and formulate our products to preserve it.
Most sunscreens are filled with ingredients harmful to your skin and to oceans as well. Science shows strong evidence that common UV-filters contained in 97% of sunscreens act as hormones disruptors on marine species and impact coral reefs from very small concentrations. People4Ocean Sun Care excludes all ingredients susceptible to harm your skin and fragile marine life. Remember that certain brands falsely claim to be "Reef-Safe" but actually contain harmful chemicals, so always check the label for toxins such as Oxybenzone, Octinoxate & Octocrylene.
FRENCH POLYNESIA 2019
The lagoon of Mo'orea Island in French Polynesia displays beautiful marine life and coral reefs. However, after consecutive years of coastal development, tourism pressures and climate change induced bleaching events, the reef community of the lagoon of Mo'orea has dramatically declined. Today, many areas of the lagoon are dominated by seaweed and dead coral rubble. The non-for-profit Coral Gardeners is committed to saving the last corals of Mo'orea and restore the ecological function of lagoon coral reefs on their island. They know for a fact that we depend - as humans - depend on coral reefs, not the other way around...
P4O co-founder, Louise Laing MSc joined Coral Gardener's restoration team in November 2019. The main objective of the mission was to establish Coral Gardener's long-term strategy to restore the functionality of reefs in three marine parks of the northern lagoon. The focus is made on corals showing a natural pre-adaptation to climate change and other human stressors. If we are able to locally propagate these "super corals", we can assist the natural evolution of lagoon reefs in Mo'orea and give them a fighting change. The mission was also the opportunity to train the team to field monitoring methods and new coral transplantation techniques. Overall, the collaboration gave a more focused purpose to the actions of Coral Gardeners and led to an incredible exchange of knowledge and skills from both groups.
2015 - 2017
P4O founders spent two years leading a large-scale reef-restoration project implemented by the conservation NGO Nature Seychelles and funded by USAID and the United Nations Development Program. Since its implementation in 2010, the project has planted over 24,000 corals on the reef of Cousin Island in the Republic of Seychelles.In 2016, we experienced the devastating impacts of climate change, witnessing the reef being wiped-out by a severe heat wave during the 2015/17 El Niño event. We collected and analyzed weekly data on coral response to heat stress during seven consecutive months of monitoring effort. Following the heat stress, we implemented an emergency coral restoration plan adapted to boost reef recovery post mass-bleaching:
1. Live fragments of opportunity (naturally detached) and naturally dislodged colonies were collected, fragmented and seeded onto a nursery for one year, allowing fragments to grow into full-sizes coral colonies. Through these actions, we generated and replanted nearly 3,000 heat-resistant corals. To learn more about the Reef Rescuers Project, click here.
2. Manual removal of seaweeds was regularly undertaken on the designer reef to "make some room" for potential coral larvae, allowing them to recruit the area and settle onto the reef, further improving recovery at the scale of the ecosystem.
3. Controls of predator populations were addressed: Over 200 Crown-of-Thorns starfish (Acanthaster planci) were injected with lethal doses of vinegar in order to avoid further coral mortality on a resilient site. Manual collection of nearly 2,000 coral-eating snails Drupella spp. were necessary to restore normal population densities, more balanced with the low coral cover on the designer reef after bleaching-related mortality.
Six Senses Zil Pasyon
In October 2017, 1863 coral-fragments were seeded into a coral-nursery within the Marine Park of Felicity Island. Those fragments were collected from donor corals made vulnerable from infestation by the coral-eating snail Drupella spp. During the 12-months period of coral-growth, the nursery will be visited by guests and local Seychellois via snorkeling or scuba diving and allow to raise awareness about the world's coral crisis.The transplantation of the nursery-grown corals is scheduled for the end of 2018, when fully grown colonies will be securely cemented to the seafloor onto granite ridges and boulders, restoring 600 square meters of fringing reef previously degraded by the 2016 El Nino, a climatic event responsible for widespread coral mortality in the Seychelles inner islands and worldwide. This new coral garden will naturally recruit marine life such as reef fish, crustaceans and even coral larvae from nearby areas. It will also become an attractive site for more spectacular animals like sea turtles, rays and reef sharks. Regular data collection and scientific monitoring will allow to assess the extend of this project's conservation achievements. Read more about this project here.
Reef & Beach Cleanups
Over 1.5 tons of rubbish were collected underwater and along beaches of Trou d'Eau Douce town in Mauritius during two Reef & Beach Cleanup events in partnership with Four Seasons and Anahita resorts, Mr. Bricolage hardware store and multiple dive centers. In 2014, 524 plastic bottles, 153 aluminium cans, 12 car tires and 1 car battery were removed from the lagoon with the help of 24 beach volunteers and 12 divers! Another Reef & Beach Cleanup was organized the following year, removing more trash from the ocean!
Marine Education At Four Seasons Resort
P4O provided marine training to the boathouse staff of eight resorts in Mauritius, sharing their passion and knowledge about coral reef and mangrove ecosystems and providing reef management guidelines against Crown-of-Thorns Starfish and coral-bleaching. After the course, snorkeling and glass-bottom boat guides were fully trained to share their understanding of the lagoon with resorts guests, colleagues or friends and family members! We believe that spreading understanding and respect for the ocean is a major driver towards it's preservation...
The Reefs Of Hope Strategy
Coral Reefs around the world are experiencing great loss due to increasing ocean temperatures and other human induced stresses such as overfishing and pollution. After episodes of mass bleaching, the few surviving corals represent hope for the future, being the strongest of the strong (more resistant to heat stress) and thus vital for the future adaptation of coral reefs.
Our founders were recently in Fiji to implement coral restoration actions with local communities and the local non-for-profit Corals for Conservation (C4C). To assist coral reefs in their evolutionary race against climate change, P4O and C4C implemented the Reefs of Hope strategy - an emergency response to mass coral bleaching in the region. The strategy works to secure bleaching resistant corals where they are facing eminent demise, and to propagate heat-adapted corals across heavily impacted reefs where severe bleaching has killed many or most of the corals.
Super Coral Nurseries
The strategy focuses on establishing gene bank nurseries to increase the biomass of heat-resistant corals, as well as field interventions to keep the resistant “super” corals alive after mass die-off events. We then work at restoring sexual reproduction and the associated formation of coral larvae, as well as stimulating the settlement of coral larvae onto denuded reefs in proximity to resistant corals. This last process ensures the sharing of heat-resistant symbiotic algae among the newly settled coral recruits, further disseminating climate adapted assets onto the reef.Observations and achievements made as part of this long-term strategy will be reported to the wider scientific community and passed-on to reef stakeholders of the world.With coral reefs retrieving worldwide at an accelerating rate, the Reefs of Hope Strategy is needed now more than ever. Make a donation here.
Coral Restoration Workshop
People4Ocean sponsored and actively participated to the first community-based coral restoration workshop in Fiji - organised by Dr Austin Bowden-Kerby with Corals for Conservation and hosted by Plantation Island Resort from May 13th to May 17th. "Our first workshop was just completed here in Fiji, with 30 participants, now all focused on a 'super coral' strategy of bleaching resistance, creating a Noah's Ark of corals in preparation for the next mass bleaching tragedy" says Dr Bowden-Kerby.
A big Vinaka Vakulevu to Dr Austin Bowden-Kerby, Coral for Conservation and to our partners - Mamanuca Environmental Society, Malolo Communities, Plantation Island Resort, Musket Cove Island Resort, Liku Liku Lagoon Resort, Castaway Island Fiji, Malolo Island Resort, Tavarua Island Resort, Sub Surface Fiji, Captain Cook Cruises, Conservation International, Sea Stewardship, and Ministry of Fisheries thank you for all your participation.