Project Database: New England Aquarium

PEOPLE AND CULTURE – LIVE BLUE ENGAGEMENT PROGRAM


PROJECT STORY

New England Aquarium; Central Wharf

The New England Aquarium is the only Boston-based cultural institution with a mission focused primarily on the environment. The Aquarium promotes the importance of protecting the oceans through innovative exhibits and educational programs. Recently, the Aquarium has developed a series of live blue™ outreach initiatives to inspire the public to take action to protect the blue planet.

The live blue™ concept is a key part of the Aquarium’s outreach efforts on the web, in exhibits and throughout the greater Boston community. These efforts include the live blue™ initiative website (www.liveblueinitiative.org), which gives ocean fans a social way to pledge their commitment to ocean conservation.

The website is accessible at kiosks in the Aquarium’s main building, allowing visitors engage with the Aquarium’s global conservation efforts while spending time with the animals. More live blue™ messaging is strategically placed on a series of panels throughout the exhibit path.

NEAQ - live_blue_initiative_screenshot

NEAQ - live_blue_ambassadors

Social & Environmental Impact

The Aquarium’s live blue™ programs connect its audience’s fascination with marine life to lifestyle changes that will benefit ecosystems around the world. The premise is that we can all work together to take simple steps that will make a real difference for the ocean animals. These steps include purchasing eco-friendly seafood, installing energy efficient appliances and choosing to walk, bike or take public transportation whenever practical.

The Aquarium is at the forefront of climate change communication efforts. Asking people to live blue™ is an effective way to spread the word that our daily choices are connected to global issues. 2013 is a landmark year at the Aquarium, with the largest renovation in history being unveiled for summer visitors. The New Aquarium Experience starts July 1. As building improvements continue, the Aquarium is likely to see a significant increase in attendance. At the same time, the audiences for the Aquarium’s education programs and online offerings are also growing. This means that its environmental messaging is poised reach more people than ever before.

Boston Partnerships

The same messaging is being used in cooperative outreach programs with other non profits, organizations and businesses. Each June the Aquarium hosts a major World Oceans Day celebration on the Boston Harborwalk inviting environmental groups, ocean educators and seafood providers to share their work with thousands of visitors in a family friendly atmosphere. Aquarium conservation experts carry that same collaborative methods throughout the Boston area by partnering with local chefs to create Blue Plate Special menu options that showcase sustainable seafood ingredients. The Aquarium also offers a live blue™ Ambassadors volunteer program that gives high school students the opportunity to get involved in freshwater and coastal restoration projects.