Our projects

The Ocean Awards

The Ocean Awards recognise individuals, community groups, organisations and businesses that have made significant contributions to the health of the marine environment.

The Ocean Awards recognise individuals, community groups, organisations and businesses that have made significant contributions to the health of the marine environment, to the sustainable management of marine resources, or to public engagement with the oceans and seas during the qualifying period.

You can watch the full 2021 award ceremony here and find out more about the winners here.

Do you know someone who deserves to win an Ocean Award? The 2022 nominations are open now!

Award Categories and Criteria

Awards are made in seven categories:

  1. Local Hero

This award recognises the individual or (grassroots / community-based / local) group that has had the most positive impact on the marine environment within their local community this year. The winner will be a recognised leader on marine conservation issues within their community. Special attention will be paid to those working in an unfavourable environment or circumstances.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have a) initiated a promising effort for the benefit of the ocean within their community, or b) significantly improved, advanced, or revived an existing effort towards new achievements.


  1. Science

This award recognises the individual or research team that has made an original scientific contribution about the ocean this year.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have significantly contributed towards a peer-reviewed publication or study that is directly useful for the benefit of global marine conservation or ocean health.


  1. Innovation

This award recognises the individual, company or group that has this year publicly introduced innovative measures for reducing stress on the oceans or for improving ocean health; such measures might include business operations which are not undertaken at the expense of the marine environment or development of promising new technologies that benefit the marine environment.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have undertaken activities or commitments to significantly develop or implement products, services, processes, or measures that have – or are likely to have – a positive impact on the health of the marine environment


  1. Public Awareness

This award recognises the individual or group that has done the most this year to advance marine conservation objectives, including public literacy about marine conservation issues, be it through campaigning and advocacy, the mainstream media, art forms, or educational programmes.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have this year initiated or significantly advanced activities with a demonstrable impact on ocean management or the public understanding or public visibility of an important ocean issue (or issues).


  1. Lifetime Achievement (previously Visionary Award)

This award recognises an individual that has taken the lead on globally significant actions, such as policy or advocacy initiatives, for the benefit of ocean health, over an extended period of time. The winner of this award will have shown consistent leadership and vision on ocean issues, going above and beyond others in their commitment to protecting marine life.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have a demonstrable track record of leadership on marine issues. They must either have initiated or taken a lead in influencing a globally significant effort for the benefit of the ocean or seen a significant milestone in a previously initiated effort.


  1. Young Initiative

This award celebrates and recognises an individual between the ages of 18 and 30 who is at the beginning of their career. He or she will have shown commitment and action within ocean conservation. The winner of this award will have demonstrated promising leadership and vision on ocean issues, be it through campaigning and advocacy, the mainstream media, art forms, or educational programmes.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must have this year shown hard work and determination in their commitment to ocean conservation with a demonstrable impact. They must be able to illustrate how they have shown leadership and implemented their ideas through either a voluntary or professional position.


  1. Yacht of the Year

Sponsored by Arksen. Arksen have offered a generous financial donation to the winner of this award to help further their ocean conservation efforts.

This award acknowledges vessels, their owners, and/or crew that have actively helped enhance the health of the ocean. This could be through allowing access for researchers, conservationists and scientists, or through raising awareness of ocean issues, or through hands-on initiatives of their own. This award is designed to celebrate the people behind the scenes who work to allow vital ocean-saving work to occur. The winner will demonstrate a commitment to ocean conservation throughout their vessel function, and the people who serve on her.

Criteria: Nominees for this award must be able to demonstrate how their vessel and those onboard have provided services to enable work to occur that demonstrably enhances ocean health, either by adapting, or by equipping a vessel, which enables valuable conservation work.  Nominees must also provide evidence of the kind of impact the research conducted has had, or could have, on ocean preservation.


What are the benefits of winning an ocean award?

It is always important to recognise the hard work of others, but winning an Ocean Award comes with a host of benefits, making your nomination even more worthwhile:


Press opportunities:

The Ocean Awards have attracted some great press coverage over the years and are a fantastic opportunity for the winners to receive exposure for their achievements towards improving the health of the ocean.

BLUE and BOAT’s dedicated Comms & Marketing Teams and PR Agencies work together to create press opportunities and maximise exposure for the winners.

We have been successful in securing coverage in the following news outlets: ITV News, Evening Express, Breaking News and The Daily Mail. The winners are also featured in BOAT’s print and online magazine.


Industry exposure: The Ocean Award judges are a combination of business and conservation experts.


Networking opportunities: Each year an awards ceremony is held at the spectacular Fishmongers’ Hall in London to celebrate the winners and runners up of the Ocean Awards. The winners are acknowledged and presented with a custom–designed award by Crystal Caviar. Guests include friends and supporters of BLUE and BOAT International, as well as scientists, corporates and experts in ocean conservation, so the ceremony is also an excellent networking opportunity.


Professional film: Each of the winners will have a professional film about their achievements made for them by BLUE’s expert Media Team.

Last year’s videos can be seen here.


Social media exposure: Combined, BOAT and Blue Marine have a large social media following (Instagram: 283,000, Facebook Likes: 97,000 Twitter: 44,000). Each winner will be announced across these social media platforms furthering their exposure.

See the 2021 Ocean Awards impact report here.

See 2021 Ocean Award winners here.


How to nominate – VOTING FOR 2021 NOW OPEN

Do you know of an individual or organisation that is that is deserved of winning an ocean award? Make sure you recognise their work by nominating them via BOAT’s website.


Nomination guidelines:

The Awards are global in coverage and nominations from outside the G7 countries are encouraged.

Nomination must be made in English and using the online form; supporting materials are advantageous.

“Qualifying Period” / “This year” imply the 12 months prior to the date of nomination

Science category: individual researcher(s) or research team(s) must be affiliated with an institution or an organisation.

Nominees must be made aware of their nomination by the nominating entity.

If awarded, nominees agree to participate in the Awards publicity, e.g. attend an awards ceremony, provide video clips, podcast interview, or similar.

The Ocean Awards is a joint initiative between Blue Marine Foundation (BLUE) and BOAT International (BOAT). Staff, trustees and directors of BLUE and BOAT or current members of the judging panel are not eligible for nomination.


Our partners

Our partners for this project

How to help

By working together, we can turn the tide on overfishing and the destruction of biodiversity. By supporting Blue Marine, you can help to create marine reserves around the world.


No matter how big or small, all donations are valuable to us.


Join Friends of Blue Marine

Support Blue Marine by joining us today.

Join us

Blue Marine Yacht club

The Ocean’s Favourite Club

Become a member