Marine Science Club Protects Sea Turtles


Amanda Young, Business Editor

The Marine Sciences club held a fundraiser for baby sea turtles in front of CVS in Moraga on December 2 from 12-4pm.

The club, which provides an opportunity for people to learn about the ocean and life within it, was created 2 years ago by senior Andrew Price. Now, Price and co-president junior Lexi Yokomizo run the club together.

“I was always really interested in marine sciences, so I connected with [Price] last year and he had been running it for about 2 years. It was pretty new, and there wasn’t really anything going on, so this year, we’re both now co-presidents who are putting more structure in the club and doing more presentations and meetings,” said Yokomizo.

Yokomizo said that her interest in marine sciences stems from her swimming career and childhood. “I’m a swimmer, so [it’s] partly from that,” she said. “My parents have always taught me to respect the ocean, because it can kill you, but it’s also really, really cool and awesome and there’s so much stuff that you can find out and discover.”

Their fundraiser was hosted in collaboration with the SEE Turtles’ program, Billion Baby Turtles. Club members sold postcards to their families and friends as well as the public. Each dollar collected saves 5 sea turtles, according to Yokomizo, and club member junior Tracy Si said that they raised about $217.

“What the organization actually does is that they find different nesting sites for the turtles and protect the hatching areas because the most dangerous part of the turtle’s journey is from when they hatch and then going into the water. There’s so many different predators and humans and all the lights from different offshore hotels and stuff like that,” said Yokomizo. “Most of them die. Usually, only 2 out of 1000 maybe get to the ocean and maybe 1 will only go to adulthood. If you increase the amount that go to the ocean, you have a much [higher] likelihood of them actually surviving.”

“There’s a lot of sea turtles that are going close to [extinction]. This is all because of humans, all because of pollution and poaching, and it’s up to us to solve it,” Si added.

The club, which meets on Mondays in room G4, also includes presentations to “educate people” and focuses on “everyone learning,” Yokomizo said. “Next meeting, we are having 1 of our members give a presentation about different organizations.”

Yokomizo added that each month has a different theme. “For each month that we have, we have different topics. [November] was different people and organizations, and December will be organizations, like Ocean Cleanup is a new one in Alameda. January’s will be on different aquariums,” she said.

Junior Emily Marston said that she originally joined the club because her friends are part of it, but soon realized that “the presentations were really well-given and they provided a lot of good background and information on marine science in general.”

“As the club leader Lexi pointed out in 1 of our meetings, the situation for sea turtles is really grave right now, and the fact that she wants to help it and we can fundraise money to help innocent lives, I think it’s a really great cause,” added Marston, who said that she bought a few postcards herself.