Blue Vision Summits are ocean conferences held every two years (except 2019) that bring together hundreds of local, regional, national and global leaders of the blue movement to meet and network with each other and other marine stakeholders, to develop strategies for ocean conservation and to interact with the U.S. Administration and Congress, including during a ‘Healthy Ocean Capitol Hill Day,’ that has drawn delegations from dozens of states from Florida to Colorado to California.
What attendees have to say about their experiences at Blue Vision Summits.
“It was a terrific experience for me to attend the event and hear about the good work being done to raise awareness about threats to the ocean.”
“We came away with tons of information, new friends, contacts, and warm memories”
“We need to keep the connections going here – you have really sparked something good.”
“I especially appreciated the communication and arts components – we need to
workshop how to beach reach the public as much as we can.”
“Bringing together great people to think about how we can create the vision.”
” We made many new connections…and look forward to keeping
in touch with our new friends, and perhaps find ways to work together.”
“If you’re concerned about our oceans and coasts – and the money and jobs that rely on them – we’d love for you to join us in calling on Congress to acknowledge how important our seas really are to the country and planet.”
- Every two years Blue Vision Summits bring diverse groups and individuals from the marine conservation community together in Washington, D.C. to explore new avenues for solutions to the challenges facing our public seas.
- Summits are attended by individuals and organizations that work towards improving ocean conservation efforts from a variety of approaches including education, restoration, science, business and policy.
- The Summits provide a unique opportunity for community members to learn from one another and often result in new collaborations.
- Summits attract and bridge the gaps between citizens, activists, organizations and elected officials.
- Each Summit includes a visit to Capitol Hill where participants visit the offices of Congress members and convey their support for healthy oceans.
- It’s critical that we come together as a movement and a growing constituency of marine conservationists, businesses, scientists, recreational users, youth and others to turn the tide for our public seas.
May 2017: Hoping to turn the tide of the Trump Administration’s anti-ocean agenda (offshore drilling, climate denial, etc.), upwards of 1,000 established and emerging ocean leaders from across the country came together attending both the 2017 BVS6 at George Washington University and the 10th annual Peter Benchley Ocean Awards at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History (co-sponsored by Blue Frontier). This was the youngest and most diverse BVS gathering and ocean awards attendance to date. There’s nothing like an existential threat to get people to school together including three Middle Schools from New York that took a two-day field trip to D.C. to join us. Along with dozens of panels, theme dinners and speakers including Dr. Sylvia Earle, Senator Bob Menendez, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Indonesian Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti, BVS6 also included the largest citizen lobby for the ocean in U.S. history with several hundred delegates from 25 states including a large delegation from the Inland Ocean Coalition and youth delegates from Heirs to Our Oceans and other blue youth groups.
May 2015: Nearly 400 individuals convened upon Washington, D.C. for BVS5 to discuss: responding to the impacts from climate change, overfishing, offshore oil and plastic pollution and also, with students and youth, working to make sure that healthy public seas and the healthy economies and communities they support (both human and wild) become a national public policy priority by the 2016 Presidential Elections. Speakers included Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft, NOAA Administrator Dr. Kathy Sullivan, , Rep. Sam Farr, Ralph Nader, Senator Brian Schatz , Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Legal Sea Foods CEO Roger Berkowitz, National Aquarium CEO John Racanelli, Fabien Cousteau, Celine Cousteau, Wendy Benchley, J. Wallace J. Nichols, David Doubillet, Don Walsh, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, Nigella Hillgarth, Chad Nelson, and a 90-foot inflatable Blue Whale named Ms Blue.
May 2013: 300 individuals from 27 different states attended BVS4 in Washington, D.C. Speakers included: Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Representative Sam Farr, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, Ralph Nader, Jim Toomey, Wyland, leaders from Google, Blue Frontier Campaign, NRDC, Ocean Champions, Oceana, Ocean Conservancy, U.S. Coast Guard, Taylor Shellfish, major aquariums and marine labs, surfers, divers, fishermen, educators, artists, writers, explorers and many other salty folk. This summit main focus was the that in the wake of a critical election, a weak economy and a recent super storm they we’re seeing some progress, but also major cuts to NOAA, the U.S. Coast Guard and other frontline ocean agencies as well as local programs that protect and restore our public seas. That’s why it was critical that they came together as a movement and a growing constituency of marine conservationists, businesses, scientists, recreational users, youth advocates and others to turn the tide.
May 2011: Over 400 attendees from around the country came to Washington, D.C. Focused on enactment and enforcement of national ocean policy, addressing climate change impacts and Gulf restoration.
March 2009: 400 people form 250 different organizations came to Washington, D.C. Speakers included: Dr. Roger Payne (Keynote Speaker), Dr. Sylvia Earle, Nancy Sutley (CEQ Director), Representative Sam Farr, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Mike Chrisman (CA Secretary of Resources), Marine Artist Wyland, Bill McKibben, Jim Toomey, David Helvarg, David Guggenheim, Thomas Lovejoy, Carl Safina, Philippe Cousteau. This summit demonstrated to the new Obama administration and Congress that there is a strong and diverse constituency ready to work for ocean and coastal protection and restoration. The summit helped build a nationwide network of ocean activists ready to act at the local level to assure passage of effective ocean legislation and encourage the good administrative and agency policies they support.
July 2004: 250 marine advocates from 23 states came to Washington, D.C. Speakers included ocean advocates Peter Benchley, Philippe Cousteau, Representative Sam Farr, and Ralph Nader.