Blue Legacy’s mission is to tell the story of our water planet and shape society’s dialogue to include water as one of the defining issues of the 21st century by leading the conversation on the importance of “watershed-first thinking” and inspiring mainstream audiences to fully participate in the conservation and restoration of the water in their local communities.
Blue Legacy International is a not-for-profit organization founded in 2008 by Alexandra Cousteau that develops and distributes traditional and new media projects to tell stories and inspire people to take action on critical water issues in meaningful ways. Blue Legacy delivers its mission by working in the following project areas:
- Expeditions to chronicle water issues
- Development and distribution of media and educational assets
- Leadership in policy forums and action campaigns
- Collaboration to increase the capacity and impact of grassroots watershed efforts
Building on the Cousteau legacy of exploration and “experiential storytelling,” Blue Legacy expeditions generate excitement and understanding about critical water issues and deliver “conversation-shaping” short films, blogs, images, and interactive elements that allow traditional and online media outlets to more effectively engage their audiences and drive productive discussion around the interconnectivity of water issues through the lens of watershed-first thinking.
John Wesley Powell once said that a watershed is:
“that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all living things are inextricably linked by their common water course and where, as humans settled, simple logic demanded that they become part of a community.”
Watersheds sustain life. These water bodies supply our drinking water, water for agriculture and manufacturing, offer opportunities for recreation and are habitats for plants and animals. When watersheds are fragmented, we compromise the ability of the underlying system to deliver both the quantity and quality of water required by our communities and the ecosystems that support them. Climate change is simply accelerating the impacts of watershed degradation being felt by communities across North America and the globe.
Watershed-first thinking is a whole-system approach critical to preserving our water while taking into account the numerous demands, threats and developments within a watershed. As we tackle the complex water issues of today and anticipate the challenges of the future, it is critical to think about watersheds as systems. From resource management, to addressing pollution, to planning appropriately for the placement of cities, factories, and farms, watershed-first thinking focuses on ecosystem interconnectivity and sustainable decision-making.
CLICK HERE to download Blue Legacy's overview packet (PDF).