Nowadays, the health of the planet and the seas is incredibly jeopardized by human activity. On the occasion of World Oceans Day, which is celebrated on June 8 as every year, H.R.H. Princess Maria Chiara of Bourbon Two Sicilies had the great pleasure of announcing her appointment as Ambassador of WWF for Italy and France, countries to which she is intimately connected.
In addition, Princess Maria Chiara wishes to put her passion for communication at the disposal of WWF’s services by publicizing on her social media channels the projects and visits she will carry out within this prestigious NGO.
The following is the speech delivered by Princess Maria Chiara:
“Planet Ocean: tides are changing.
Today is June 8, 2023 and I have the pleasure of being in one of the astonishing halls of the Maison de l’Océan in Paris to share and celebrate World Oceans Day with each and every one of you.
Over the past few years, I have decided to commit myself, in addition to pursuing my studies and my hobbies, to supporting and devoting my time to projects on the protection of nature, the marvelous world of animals, especially endangered species and the numerous climatic and ecological impacts that pollution causes on the Earth.
I have always desired to develop these initiatives in a discreet but deeply involved way, and I feel that my modest efforts have been appreciated by various associations. Especially today, I am extremely honored to announce that I have been appointed WWF Ambassador for Italy and France, two countries that are particularly close to my heart as I am an Italian-French citizen.
The first important nature conservation project I would like to share with you is the one launched by WWF Italy to protect the Oases in Italy. There are over 100 of them in total and they are Integrated Protected Area Management models. The WWF has been safeguarding them for over fifty years. They are unspoiled fragments of nature that continuously save rare species from extinction. Oases are research laboratories, outdoor classrooms and an example of good management. Every year, more than 500,000 people visit them, getting in direct contact with intact and clean nature. WWF Oases are the foundation for Nature conservation in Italy, and I genuinely invite you to explore them.
A second highly relevant project that I would like to share is the one promoted by WWF France, which deals with the protection of Posidonia oceanica meadows. Posidonia is an endemic plant of the Mediterranean Sea that is silently disappearing, unfortunately. Its name was inspired by that of the god of the sea, Poseidon, as these species perform essential functions both for marine life and for humans. It acts as the lungs of the Mediterranean because of the large amount of CO2 it absorbs. This plant is between 80,000 and 200,000 years old and is a historical heritage of the Mediterranean. It grows only 1 centimeter per year or 1 meter per century.
These are just a few of the very numerous projects I intend to promote and support, first and foremost with your support, and especially through the future trips I plan to take, but also by attending various conferences as well as using social networks to spread awareness of this crucial issue.
I would like to say that this appointment has given me even more determination to concentrate my efforts and energy to the fullest, and I will do everything I can to foster more interest in these issues. I believe it is much more than a duty for all of us, it is a actually a responsibility because it is an issue that affects each and everyone on a global scale. The most important thing we have is our planet, and we must preserve it with affection, love and huge respect.
Let’s protect our ocean, let’s protect our planet, and above all, let ‘s protect our future in harmony with Nature.”