Blue frontier has become a national leader in providing resources and opportunities to bring the voice of citizens who care about the health of our oceans into decision-making processes that will positively impact our public seas. – David Helvarg, Founder
Blue Frontier builds the solution-oriented citizen engagement needed to protect our ocean, coasts and the communities, both human and wild that depend on them.
WHO WE ARE
Founded in 2003 by award-winning author and journalist David Helvarg, and with support from public figures such as Dr. Sylvia Earle, Robert Kennedy Jr., Ralph Nader, Philippe Cousteau, Rep. Sam Farr (D CA) and former Rep. Wayne Gilchrest (R MD).
With offices in Washington DC and Richmond California, we convene key stakeholders including conscientious corporate and commercial entities such as Google, the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, Northern Trust, Ocean First Divers and Legal Sea Foods.
However, we’re primarily active at the grassroots (“seaweed”) level, with links to 1,400 ocean organizations large and small, spanning coastal states and the heartland. No other marine conservation organization has a “deeper” reach into the grassroots, or broader array of partnerships among national stakeholders.
Among other accomplishments, to date Blue Frontier has:
- Created a detailed Blue Movement Directory of 1400 U.S. organizations and institutions involved in ocean conservation listed by state. This online resource is based on our 2005 book, The Ocean and Coastal Conservation Guide.
- Organized 5 biennial Blue Vision Summits between 2004 and 2015 that regularly draw hundreds of ocean leaders to Washington D.C. to develop strategies for protecting our public seas and to meet with other ocean stakeholders and their elected representatives.
- Have held a series of ‘Healthy Ocean Hill Days’ that include dozens of state delegations meeting with their elected representatives on Capitol Hill including the largest citizen lobbies for ocean conservation in U.S. history.
- Helped organize a number of regional meetings and events in response to local concerns ranging from oil spill assessments to creation of a San Francisco Coast Guard Appreciation Day to panels on ocean art and literature.
- Helped mobilize public turnout and a ‘Wear Blue for the Oceans Day’ in support of a strong U.S. National Ocean Policy and in opposition to offshore oil drilling working with both citizen activists and government leaders.
- Ocean media – producing stories across a range of media at a rate unparalleled by any group of its size. Blue Frontier has produced on-scene stories and videos on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the BP oil spill. Our stories take unique perspectives, such as writing on Green Ports for National Geographic magazine, the feasibility of offshore clean energy, desalination plants, oil spills and more for the LA Times, and the role of the U.S. Coast Guard in conservation for Living on Earth, The Diane Rehm Show, C-Span, and others. Blue Frontier’s writing, production and interviews have been incorporated into college textbooks and run in the Associated Press, New York Times, Financial Times, USA Today, New Yorker, Coastal Living (which also gave Blue Frontier its 2005 Leadership Award), Alert Diver, and many other outlets. It’s book, 50 Ways to Save the Ocean has sold 20,000 copies, inspired an award-winning video and won a 2007 Herman Melville Award from the New York State Marine Education Association. Executive Director David Helvarg has written five other ocean and conservation books; The War Against the Greens, Blue Frontier, Rescue Warriors, The Golden Shore and Saved by the Sea.
- Established the Blue Frontier/Peter Benchley Ocean Awards that are recognized as the world’s major honors for solution oriented leadership across a broad range of society. It’s 56 past winners include several heads of state, U.S. Senators, scientists, explorers and youth activists. The awards became an independent project in 2015.
- Blue Frontier’s Ocean Explorers project has supported Rower Roz Savage on her solo rows across the Pacific and Indian Oceans to raise the profile of ocean and climate issues between 2007 and 2010. Blue Frontier’s field organizer Margo Pellegrino has also paddled her one-woman outrigger canoe from Miami to Maine, Seattle to San Diego and elsewhere, recently embarking on a New York to New Orleans paddle through the Hudson, Erie Canal, Great Lakes and down the Mississippi River to continue her outreach to local ocean activists and now inland water activists highlight the connection between clean water and healthy seas.
- Citizens for a Sustainable Point Molate is another Blue Frontier project based in the low-income San Francisco Bay city of Richmond. This citizen group effectively blocked a planned Mega-Casino on a beautiful 422-acre headlands owned by the city in 2010. Since then CFSPM has helped open a public beach and restore the headlands natural species while leading High School field trips to connect Richmond’s underserved youth to their waterfront.
- Writers For the Sea is a group founded by Blue Frontier and some 50 ocean authors on June 8, 2015 World Ocean Day. It aims to promote marine and maritime literature while also educating the public to the environmental challenges faced by 71 percent of our inspiring blue planet.
- Done extensive public speaking appearances and media outreach to spread the story of our oceans at risk and what individuals can do to make a difference. David Helvarg and other Blue Frontier staff and board members have spoken to hundreds of groups in the U.S. and overseas and write for and been quoted in a wide range of national and international print and broadcast media.
- Won Coastal Living magazines 2005 Leadership Award and the 2007 Herman Melville Award.