Reefs are the Rainforest of the Ocean

Aquarium of the Pacific is a wonderful place to experience and learn about aquatic life. They have been great partners with Respect the Reef selling our merchandise in their shops. If you get the opportunity, stop by and help support their efforts.

AoP logo



Support IMUA

Respect the Reef has just sent some of our books and clothes to the IMUA Family Center On Maui. This is a wonderful organization that has been doing extraordinary work for families for decades. The more I read about their efforts the more I became a fan. Respect the Reef is also about supporting communities that are effected by ocean ecology. Help support IMUA if you can.


Read Aloud America—A Great Cause

Respect the Reef just donated 10 of our Hawaiian -themed children’s books to Read Aloud America. Read Aloud America promotes literacy, bonds families and builds communities of lifetime readers by encouraging reading aloud to children and families.

The Read Aloud Program brings families together to reconnect and share the joys of reading and being read to. Programs like RAP bond families and build strong communities, making a better society and [offering] a brighter future.

Jed Gaines—President/Founder Read Aloud America

A group like Read Aloud America is not the usual focus for Respect the Reef, but we love their mission so much that we wanted to show our support with some of our fun Hawaii-themed children’s books.

My Grandma Could Do ANYTHING in Hawaii! BookmCover

We Love COCO’s Ambassador Program!

Colorado Ocean Coalition's Ambassador Program

Colorado Ocean Coalition’s first 24 Ocean Ambassadors

The Colorado Ocean Coalition (COCO) received funding from the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, to start their Ocean Ambassadors Certification program.

With 30 hours of training, Ocean Ambassadors (OAs) are empowered with information such as, problems and solutions regarding marine conservation, plastic and other pollution issues, watershed health, marine sanctuary protection and legislation, how to best utilize social media, the art of public speaking, and much more!

This year, COCO has 24 new students in their program ready to get started promoting Ocean Awareness.

We donated 30 Respect the Reef Tees to the Ambassadors to support COCO’s new program! We are looking forward to what COCO and the OA’s accomplish this year!

Be sure to check out COCO’s website and their Ocean Ambassadors Program:

Colorado Ocean Coalition Ambassador Program


Respect the Reef loves Ocean Awareness Week!

Respect the Reef was excited to donate products to help raise funds for University of Miami’s Ocean Awareness week—November 11 -November 16, 2013. Looks like there was a great turnout and everyone had fun learning about the importance of our oceans! Go University of Miami! Great job supporting reef education and awareness!

University of Miami student shows of new Respect the Reef tee donated for Ocean Awareness Week Nov 2013

University of Miami student shows off new Respect the Reef tee donated for Ocean Awareness Week Nov 2013


Phot of table—University of Miami Ocean Awareness Week Nov 2013

Lots of people learned more about the importance of ocean ecology at Ocean Awareness Week Nov. 2013. Good Job University of Miami!


Display at the University of Miami's Ocean Awareness Event, Nov. 2013.

Display at the University of Miami’s Ocean Awareness Event, Nov. 2013. Excellent job teaching about ocean ecology!


Way to go University of Miami students! Keep working to teach and inspire others to learn more about the oceans and reef ecology. Save the reefs!



Making Waves 2013 Event

Respect the Reef joined the Colorado Ocean Coalition to promote ocean preservation at the Making Waves 2013 Event. Of course we also let folks know about the Respect the Reef Project!

You may have heard about the floods here in Colorado. They happened a week and a half before the event, so we were happy to see as many people as we did at Making Waves 2013

The Colorado Ocean Coalition team worked hard to keep the event going. Thanks for persevering guys!

Take a look:

Ric meets Fabian Cousteau

Ric shows Fabien Cousteau our Respect the Reef products. What an honor to meet a member of the Cousteau family and an advocate for the oceans.


Grace from COCO

Grace from COCO shows off some Respect the Reef tees with the COCO imprint. NICE!


Jeff showing off his new tee

Jeff shows off his new Respect the Reef Tee.

Be sure to check out the Colorado Ocean Coalition’s website here and mark your calendars for next year’s event!

Small Fish Unite! Everyone can help save the reef!

Coral reef

We talk a lot here at Respect the Reef about rescuing coral reefs, but sometimes it is easy to become overwhelmed and give up. Don’t despair!

Small fish like us have lots of opportunities to help save the reef. Often, it doesn’t even take much time!

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has posted a list of 25 things You Can Do to Save Coral Reefs. You don’t even have to live near a reef to help!

Here are a few of our favorites from the NOAA list:

  • Don’t use chemically enhanced pesticides and fertilizers. Although you may live thousands of miles from a coral reef ecosystem, these products end up in the watershed and may ultimately impact the waters that support coral.
  • Become a member of your local aquarium or zoo. Ask what they are doing and what your donation can do toward saving the world’s coral reefs. The answer may pleasantly surprise you.
  • Support conservation organizations. Many of them have coral reef programs, and your much-needed monetary support will make a big difference.
  • Recycle. This is the first step each of us can take to make a change. Recycle anything and everything. If your community doesn’t have a program, do it anyway, and get one started.

Head over to NOAA to see the rest of the list. NOAA

If you have time after working to save the reef, stop back and tell us what you are doing. Tell us about your successes or even your struggles. Your work could inspire someone else to step up and help. Lots of small fish like us can make a BIG difference! Let’s get working!

Photo by Anna Langova.

Making Waves in Colorado 2013—Colorado Ocean Coalition Fundraiser

The Colorado Ocean Coalition [Creating an Inland Ocean Movement] sponsors the Making Waves in Colorado Event. This event promises to be educational as well as entertaining. On top of all that, the even supports a great organization. Join us here in Colorado for Making Waves 2013!

Making Waves in Colorado Event Banner

Making Waves in Colorado

Sept 20-22, 2013
Boulder Colorado
University of Colorado at Boulder

Keynote speaker

Fabien Cousteau

Join this weekend-long event to hear from cutting-edge researchers, world-renowned speakers, award-winning filmmakers and ocean advocates from across the country. We encourage you to get involved in the grassroots conversation that is calling for national action.  Making Waves 2013 is brought to you by the Colorado Ocean Coalition and the Colorado Scuba Retailer’s Association.

Check out the event’s video below:

Schedule of Events Includes:

Making WAVES Blue Drinks – Friday, September 20

Ocean Symposium – Saturday, September 21

Mermaid Masquerade Ball – Saturday, September 21

Mile-High Blue Exposition – September 21 – September 22

Ocean Film Festival – Sunday, September 22

Go to the Colorado Ocean Coalition Website to reserve your spot for Making Waves 2013!

Making Waves Event


From the Colorado Ocean Coalition’s Mission Statement:

The mission of the Colorado Ocean Coalition is to create, unite and empower a Colorado coalition with shared values, goals and actions to promote healthy oceans through education and community engagement.

Until now, there has never been a unified voice for ocean protection in the Mountain States. The Colorado Ocean Coalition believes that you don’t have to be near the ocean to care about it. Our complex global economy and the interconnectedness of ecological systems mean that the actions we take in the mountains impact the health of the sea. These actions include eating seafood, using plastics, driving cars and sharing environmental ethics with our family and friends. We live on an ocean planet and the choices we make in the middle of the country have direct ties to the seas.


Why we should all care about coral reefs!

You probably don’t think about coral reefs very often, especially if you live inland, like I do here in Colorado. However the health of reefs and by extension the oceans, is important to everyone no matter where you live!

We have a slide on our front page that sums it up: “Reefs are the rainforests of the ocean.”

What does that mean?

First of all, it means that the oceans need cleansing in the same way that the atmosphere needs cleansing. Rainforests help cleanse the atmosphere and reefs help cleanse the ocean.

Second, the rainforests are being cut down, decreasing their mass and ability to do their job. The reefs around the world are being damaged and their healing and cleansing properties are disappearing.

Finally, just as we have worked to stop rainforest destruction, we can stop the destruction and even reverse the damage done to reefs, which will benefit ocean ecosystems around the world.

Some easy ways to help save coral reefs:

  1. Educate yourself about the importance of reefs. Then share your knowledge! If people don’t know the problem exists they cannot help change it!
  2. Find organizations that encourage reef conservation and support them by donating and by spreading the word about them.  Add links below in the comments about the groups you find!
  3. Share info on Facebook, tweet and retweet news about the health of the oceans and coral reefs. Knowledge is power!
  4. Think about ways that you might help the reefs through smaller personal actions: for example, did you know that cleaning a beach (an ocean beach) can have a positive affect on reef ecology? Go out and pick up some trash off your local beach…every little bit helps!

I hope this post gives you some good ideas for helping conserve coral reefs. Share your ideas in the comments below.

If you like what we are doing here at Respect The Reef, consider buying a Respect The Reef T-Shirt to promote the cause. We donate 10% of each retail purchase to reef conservation organizations. Be part of the solution and help save our reefs!