Inspired by the Japanese concept of sato-umi – the convergence of land and sea where human and marine life can harmoniously coexist – Honda announced the establishment of the Honda Marine Science Foundation, a new initiative to address marine ecosystem restoration and the impact of humans and climate change on oceans and intertidal areas.
Committed to marine conservation, the foundation will support science-based programs that improve and preserve coastal areas for future generations. Its first initiative is the Southern California Native Oyster Restoration Project.
In 2015, Honda began researching the oceanic and aquatic impacts of a rapidly changing climate, ocean acidification and rising sea levels. Honda also set out to address human impacts on marine environments, including water pollution and overfishing.
"As a company dedicated to sustainability, we are proud to launch the Honda Marine Science Foundation and focus on coastal environmental awareness," said Steven Center, Honda Marine Science Foundation chairman. "After learning about the challenges and opportunities presented to us by a range of oceanic and atmospheric experts, Honda determined the foundation would foster meaningful cross-sector collaboration to help restore our marine ecosystems."
The Southern California Native Oyster Restoration Project is being conducted in partnership with the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) Bren School of Environmental Science & Management. The goals of the project include pioneering research to educate the public about the benefits of restoring native oysters for shoreline stabilization.
"Collaborating with the Honda Marine Science Foundation will expand our research efforts and help educate people about the positive impact native oyster restoration will have on the Southern California coast," said Hunter Lenihan, professor at UCSB Bren School of Environmental Science & Management and Honda Marine Science Foundation board member.
The Honda Marine Science Foundation board is comprised of Honda representatives and experts from the marine sciences field, including Santa Monica-based Heal the Bay, UCSB Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, and the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California. The board will help identify projects that support the foundation's mission and provide guidance for these projects.
The Honda Marine Science Foundation joins a number of environmental initiatives from Honda. These include the Honda Environmental Leadership Program that encourages Honda automobile dealers to measurably reduce their energy consumption and environmental impact, and the Honda Smart Home US that showcases Honda's vision for zero-carbon living. Honda is working to advance technologies that address society's environmental and energy concerns through a diverse lineup of products, green factory initiatives and sustainability activities.
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