How James Jagger and Project 0 Are Using Their Star Power for Preservation
ISSUE No 5
Protecting the world’s oceans might seem daunting. After all, the ocean is really, um, big and we can barely sort things out on dry land. But James Jagger is quick to point out that change can be accomplished by a matter of degrees. “People get desensitized,” the actor, activist, and son of the infamous other Jagger, says.
“The ocean is in terrible trouble, but people get close- minded when you show them 100 images of turtles with plastic rings around their heads.” To that end, he thinks it’s better to focus on simple solutions rather than overwhelming guilt, which is exactly what he’s trying to do as a member of the board of directors of Project 0, an initiative to protect the world’s oceans.
Project 0 has taken an active, nimble approach under the guidance of founder Michele Clarke, harnessing a glitzy community of international ambassadors to raise money for ocean preservation projects. To date, less than 5% of the ocean is protected, so Project 0’s grand aim is to put that number closer to 30% by 2030.
“The ocean is our life support system,” Clarke explains. “Every second breath you take is generated by the ocean, and every drop of water on our planet is generated by the ocean in the form of clouds that make rain and snow. Overfishing, plastic and mercury pollution, climate change, ocean acidification, off-shore drilling, habitat destruction, and dead zones—places where no life exists—are among the major issues facing the ocean today.”
Project 0 is also making positive change by establishing a partnership with yours truly—EDITION Hotels—on an initiative to eventually make the hotel’s properties plastic-free. “A partnership with someone like EDITION gives us the ability to reach out to people from all walks of life,” Jagger says.
For Jagger, Project 0’s mission is personal, as he’s witnessed our negative impact on the environment first hand. “I can remember going to the same places when I was a kid and seeing amazing, bountiful sea life. Getting a variety of fish from fishermen. Then going back 5–10 years later, and the same reefs I snorkeled as a kid are completely dead and the restaurants are only selling tilapia.”
While that situation sounds dire—and it is—Jagger stresses that by supporting initiatives like Project 0, there’s hope that within our lifetime we can also create significant improvement. All we have to do is focus on the positive and dive right in
As far as we know, our ocean is unique in the universe; to date, we haven’t found another planet that has an ocean
Half the oxygen we breathe is produced in the ocean
An octopus has three hearts, nine brains, and blue blood
Seahorses are the only animal species in which the male gives birth and cares for the young
Only 5% of the ocean has been explored
The ocean covers 72% of Earth’s surface, but less than 5% is under protection