Stand Up for Coral Reefs

Stand Up for Coral Reefs

Stand Up for Coral Reefs

World Ocean Day 2021

Beaches, coastlines, and our beautiful seas are all interconnected via one global ocean. The ocean covers over 70% of the earth, and coral reefs are an important component of ocean health as they support 25% of all marine life and provide homes and protection for up to 1 million species1. Coral reefs can be found in the tropics, as well as colder and deeper locations, around the globe. You are closer to and perhaps more reliant upon a coral reef than you think…


The ocean is warming, presenting many issues for the ocean and especially coral reefs. Species are being pushed to their thermal limits, corals are bleaching, and more frequent and increasingly powerful storms are eroding coastlines and natural reef habitats. The ocean’s chemical make-up is changing due to increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, so it’s become more acidic and weakening the calcium carbonate reef structures. In addition to warming oceans, many marine species are being fished quicker than they can naturally be replenished and marine animals are choking on the myriad of plastic that is swishing around our beautiful ocean. Certain species can recover, whilst others are struggling, as we continue to put pressure on their habitats. Some marine species are disappearing before we have even properly identified them. Coral reefs need our help. Support the UN’s Decade of Ocean Stewardship and stand up for coral reefs. Make small changes every day; it all counts. We are all dependent on a healthy ocean – one world, one ocean, no blue, no green.

Throughout the month of June, CCMI will be active in promoting our Stand Up for Coral Reefs efforts, and we invite you to join us in any or all of the efforts we have planned.


Join CCMI in taking the Stand Up for Reefs pledge on World Ocean Day. Record yourself taking the pledge, then share your video on your favourite social media channel. Get the pledge HERE.

Use the following hashtags to help share the message that we need to stand up for coral reefs NOW!






CCMI celebrates World Ocean Day every year as part of our Healthy Reefs outreach efforts, and in 2021, we will be returning to our special World Ocean Day Reefs Go Live event at the Camana Bay Cinema!

DATE: Saturday, 5th June 2021
TIME: 1:45pm-2:30pm
LOCATION: Camana Bay Cinema

Go on a virtual dive with our team in Little Cayman as we go underwater and learn why we should stand up for coral reefs. Our Grand Cayman ‘dive buddies’ at the Cinema will help us explore this ecosystem, and we’ll appreciate the beauty and diversity of coral reefs. Together, we’ll discuss why reefs are so important to the Cayman Islands, learn why climate change is an urgent threat to long term survival of coral reefs, and discuss why we need to stand up for coral reefs now. CCMI’s educators and researchers will help everyone leave the event with specific actions we can all take to help save corals reefs.

This virtual underwater experience also allows the audience the opportunity to send questions to our Little Cayman dive team, with selected questions being answered live during the broadcast! Come prepared to ask your coral reef questions.

Arrive early and join us in taking the ‘Stand Up for Reefs’ pledge outside the Camana Bay Cinema. Share a recording of yourself taking the pledge on social media to help us spread the word!

** This event is free and open to the public. Families are encouraged to participate. REGISTRATION IS REQUESTED. Donations are appreciated and support the conservation, education, outreach and restoration projects of CCMI.

This broadcast is made possible by the Edmund F. and Virginia B. Ball Foundation.


World Ocean Day Reef Lecture

Research Update

DATE: Tuesday, 8th June 2021
TIME: 5:45pm-7:00pm
LOCATION: National Gallery of the Cayman Islands, Dart Auditorium

We request advanced registration as seating is limited. The event is FREE thanks to the support of our Healthy Reefs sponsors.

Come and join Dr Gretchen Goodbody-Gringley, CCMI’s Director of Research, to celebrate World Ocean Day and to get an update on CCMI’s work on coral reef ecology and restoration.

CCMI has been monitoring the reefs in the Cayman Islands for over 20 years and began our long-term coral restoration programme in 2012. We have just launched a new Reef Ecology and Evolution Lab (REEL), which utilises cutting edge science to help understand climate change and how coral reefs can adapt for the future.

** This event is free and open to the public. REGISTRATION IS REQUESTED. Donations are appreciated and support the conservation, education, outreach and restoration projects of CCMI.


The Stand up for Reefs podcast series has one clear goal: to bring our listeners closer to coral reefs and to help instill a sense of care for the precious coral reef ecosystem.

The series will include a range of special guests, bringing their love of the ocean to you at home (or in your car, on your run or at work!). This podcast is for everyone, young, old, no scientific knowledge, some understanding of why corals are important, it doesn’t matter. What brings us all together is knowing we need to create a brighter future for our oceans and coral reefs are integral to future global health.

This podcast series is brought to you by the team at CCMI. Subscribe through your favourite podcast app.

2020 Little Cayman Healthy Reef Report Card

Since 1999, CCMI has conducted annual monitoring of coral reefs in Little Cayman to build a database of information about the state of coral reefs and the changes seen over time. Our 2020 surveys reveal that Little Cayman’s coral reefs show positive traits of resiliency, with continued high coral and fish
abundances. However, shifts in species contributions and colony size indicate that while coral cover remains high, Little Cayman is not immune to human
impacts and global climate change.

Read the main findings in the Healthy Reef Report Card.

Actions for Healthier Oceans


Share your Stand up for Reefs pledge, connect people to the global ocean and the fact that we can all help make a difference in their future. There is one world ocean; we are all responsible for it.


Share your love of the ocean and coral reefs, get involved with local organisations that support marine protection, take part in beach clean ups, support local animal sanctuaries and make sure your local politician knows how important the ocean is to you. Your strength as a voter is your superpower. Small actions you take today can benefit coral reef ecosystems and ocean health all around the world.

Sustainable Seafood

Commercial fishing is one of the biggest pressures on the ocean and coral reef ecosystems. As a consumer, you have the power to make change. Buy sustainably, reduce your reliance upon key fish stocks like tuna and where you can, and support local sustainable fisheries. If you are travelling, check out fish that should be avoided; each nation has different stresses on their local fish populations.

Climate Change

Everyone can make a difference with climate change, but it still feels like a huge and overwhelming issue. You can make simple, impactful changes by: using green energy, reducing reliance on oil-based products, buying less stuff, supporting local, eating more fruit and veg and less animal protein, using less energy by investing in eco-friendly products in your home and for your transport choices, and if you have to fly, offsetting your carbon use.

Clean Oceans

Plastics remain a huge issue for the oceans, and over 80% of marine pollution comes from land. Reduce your reliance on plastic, recycle responsibly at every opportunity, consider using environmentally friendly cleaning and home products. Remember that all waterways are connected to the ocean; pollution from land often enters the ocean via run-off and coastal ecosystems are heavily impacted by human pollution.


We need a biodiverse ocean, with many species, to maintain the balance of the marine biosphere. It is easier than you think to help protect biodiversity by respecting protected areas, especially marine parks. Support no take and no fishing zones. Choose ocean and reef friendly products, such as pet food (which are heavily reliant upon fish). Choose sustainable travel companies and tour operators; many regions have standards that can help you identify sustainable options.


Coastal ecosystems are under pressure from the sheer volume of humans they are supporting. Support innovation and green energy, challenge development where a comprehensive environmental impact assessment has not been done. Challenge local councils and local government when you think your local ecosystem (marine or terrestrial, they are all linked) is being degraded.

Learn More

Learn more about how you can stand up for a healthier ocean environment today – and every day – through these organisations:

Cayman Islands Department of Environment

National Trust of the Cayman Islands

Mission Blue

Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development