A frogfish finding shelter among bits of plastic is one of the winners of a World Oceans Day photography competition, announced at the United Nations earlier this month.
Our oceans absorb many of the carbon dioxide emissions we emit, but human pressures – including overfishing, marine pollution, habitat destruction, climate change and ocean acidification – are taking a significant toll.
Ellen Cuylaerts, an underwater photographer who announced the winners of the competition, said it was “a moment of reflection on what oceans mean for mankind, and the messages photographers try to grab in just one frame to get attention for the conservation challenges we face.”
Three images were selected as winners in each of five categories, and may now feature in exhibitions to highlight the importance our oceans play– keeping the issues high on the agenda all year round.
Making a Difference: Humans in Action
In first place of the ‘Making a Difference: Humans in Action’ category was Gregory Lecoeur, with his image of a frogfish floating among bits of plastic.
Second place was awarded to Australian Troy Mayne, for his image of a turtle reflected in a Scuba diver’s mask.
Third place was awarded to China’s Ping Fan, for her image of a scuba diver, floating among sharks.
Winners also came from other categories, including Above Water Seascapes, Underwater Life, Underwater Seascapes and Youth.
Above Water Seascapes
Winner of the Above Water Seascapes category was Gabriel Barathieu, for a photo which he describes as an explosion of life – a coral garden.
Winner of the Underwater Life category was Dan Charity from the UK for his image of a Whale Shark in Thailand.
Winner of the Underwater Seascapes category was Alex Lindbloom with his image of a sponge among Mangroves.
Second place in the Youth photographer category was Charlotte Siembieda, aged 11, for her image of a dolphin taken from the bow of a boat. She said “The dolphins were so playful that day. Everytime we looked down they would rotate to meet us eye to eye. After 20 minutes we had to move on and when we moved away this dolphin jumped above the water and we saw that she had a fishing hook in her dorsal fin. It was a stark reminder that humans affect every aspect of the natural environment”
All winning photos were reproduced by Climate-KIC’s Daily Planet with the explicit permission of each of the photographers. Any use of the pictures requires further individual permission.