BYRON BAY | HONOUR THE OCEAN Campaign COORDINATOR

Water has always fascinated Marie (pronounced Ma-hee). Even though her childhood habitat was Montreal (a city quite far from the ocean), she first heard the call of the water from the multiple Canadian lakes. From playing in the water for hours as a child, to wakeboarding all summer or learning how to surf in the river, she needed to feel the wilderness of nature through water. The ocean was always part of her vacation and the connection she felt whenever she was close to the sea grew stronger year after year.

After discovering the impact of unsustainable human activities resulting in hypertrophication of lakes in Quebec, which is highly affecting water quality, Marie started to feel the pull to understand our Earth better. After completing a college diploma in photography, she decided to pursue a Bachelor Degree in Environmental Geography in Montreal.

Understanding the natural cycles which rule our world was captivating, however the journey of her real passion only started in 2010 when she flew to Florianópolis (Brazil) to specialize her studies within the Oceanography program, first as an exchange student, then through an internship and finally with a Master Degree in Coastal Oceanography and Marine Geology.

After 7 years of being closely involved with ocean activities through surfing, diving, sailing the East coast of Canada, the United States and Brazil, participating in Coastal Management Conferences in Chile, Uruguay and Brazil, traveling along some of the most polluted coasts of the world in Indonesia and Malaysia, witnessing first-hand the extreme erosion along the coasts of Spain and France, organizing a surf festival focused on sustainability, as well as being involved with beach clean-ups and studying the effectiveness of Marine Reserve's in close proximity to highly polluted effluents, Marie now feels the urgency of being a part of creating positive change. She hopes people will also feel this urgency through understanding the fragility of nature and the importance of protecting it. She believes that shared knowledge and information can ensure that the critical situation facing the ocean can be reversed.

Marie is our Byron Bay Honour the Ocean Coordinator and is leading our beach survey teams, educational displays, plastic bag free Byron campaign and other local initiatives to address the way that the region perceives single-use products, as well as the effect that they have on the ocean.