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Ocean & Human Lives

Just as there are many human health risks to contend with in the marine environment, the global ocean is a vast and bountiful treasure chest of resources we rely on every day to support our existence. Protein-rich sustenance, medical treatments, and physical and mental well-being are just some of the ocean-related benefits societies have taken advantage of for centuries.

Recognizing the critical importance of the oceans to our own health—and the planet’s—ocean scientists are working to investigate the untapped potential of the sea in order to maximize these benefits, and to help ensure the ocean’s bounty for generations to come.

Harmful Algae & Red Tides

Tiny plants pose a potent threat to those who live in and eat from the sea.

Natural Disasters

Our ocean planet is dynamic and constantly changing, sometimes resulting in dramatic threats to humans.

Ocean Culture & History

The role of the ocean in human culture is profound, as people experience the sea in many ways, and respond with literature, art, and scientific investigation.


Substances used or spread by humans, such as oil, radiation, plastics, and agricultural and residential waste enter the ocean and cause harmful effects.

Underwater Archaeology

Wreckage of ships and airplanes underwater are difficult to find, survey, and study.