Monthly Archives: May 2014

One People One Reef: Ulithi in Micronesia’s Outer Islands

By Nicole Crane We are a team of dedicated scientists and community leaders, combining science and tradition who are coming together with people from the Outer Islands of Micronesia, Federated States of Yap,  to achieve sustainable ocean management — their way. And you can be a part of efforts to help Mission Blue’s Micronesia Hope Spot! The effort is a collaboration between a team of scientists and teams of local community members to sustainably manage over 100,000 square miles of ocean (learn more about our science team.) We are working with outer island communities to bring traditions and modern science together in a revolutionary approach to sustainable ocean management. And we are seeing unprecedented success!   Learn more about this work below, and help support it through our Indiegogo campaign!  …
Posted in Partner Stories |

Leave a comment

Her Deepness on the Great Barrier Reef’s Forgotten Habitats

By Dr. Sylvia Earle Hooray for the stay of execution for the Great Barrier Reef!  Maybe common sense will prevail as the full extent of the economic, ecological and security impacts are more widely recognized.  One aspect that gets little attention is this: It is not just the dumping of the spoils from dredging that matters here.    Putting aside the rationale for the channel — to facilitate shipping coal mined in western Australia to be burned in China, and the consequences of traffic through the channel (noise, wave action, spills, wastes, other ship-related impacts.)  There is a perception that there is no downside to having the channel as long as it does not cut through the reef itself. But mud-sand and other “soft bottom” areas are as full of life as a rain forest and are critical to the existence of the more conspicuous reef systems.  …
Posted in mission blue |

Leave a comment

Ocean art documentary highlights humanity’s ties to coral reefs

By Courtney Mattison A new documentary is making a splash at film festivals around the country and it’s heading to California. Angel Azul – a feature length environmental documentary from Passelande Pictures directed by Marcelina Cravat – explores the plight of Caribbean coral reefs through the work of renowned sculptor and reef conservationist Jason deCaires Taylor.Angel Azul takes viewers from Taylor’s dry, cavernous concrete sculpture studio 20 minutes down the coast from Cancun to the warm azure waters offshore, where the artist has installed hundreds of life-size statues in the seafloor to serve as artificial reefs that aggregate fish and provide safe spots on which baby corals can settle and grow. Taylor’s hauntingly beautiful works also draw tourists away from the natural reefs nearby, which are struggling to survive the panoply of threats imposed by climate change, disease, nutrient pollution and other human-caused impacts.…
Posted in mission blue, Uncategorized |

Leave a comment

Ocean Gems Connects Teenage Girls to Women Marine Scientists

What happens when a group of incredible women marine scientists aim to inspire girls to follow their hearts and pursue their passion for the sea? Find out with Mission Blue partner Ocean GEMS, a multimedia series and outreach program that connects teenaged girls to women marine science role models to offer youth a pathway to reach their dreams!With support from The Baum Foundation (www.thebaumfoundation.org), Ocean GEMS breaks ground by combining active mentoring by women marine scientists with a documentary series, interactive web-based forums, social media communities, and afterschool programs.  Many girls don’t make the connection between science and their interest in helping people and the environment.   The influence of Ocean GEMS role models and mentors has a significant impact on girls’ judgment and impressions of science-related careers.…
Posted in Partner Stories |

5 Comments

Speak out for Australia’s Marine Sanctuaries!

Ocean Elder and IUCN WCPA Emeritus, Graeme Kelleher has just taken action to protect Australia’s incredible marine life and coastal lifestyle, and thought you might like to help too. In 2012, Australia created the world’s largest network of marine sanctuaries, but Tony Abbott has now suspended these sanctuaries, putting them all at risk. He says there’s been no consultation, no science evidence. But there’s already been 10 years of science assessment, 606 days of consultation, 221 leading scientists backed sanctuaries, and 750,000 submissions with 95% support! Watch this video and pledge your support for Australia’s sanctuaries today:http://www.saveourmarinelife.org.au/pledge We’re 100,000 strong in Australia and still growing. Local businesses, divers, fishers and coastal communities are getting on board. Please watch the video and sign the pledge today.…
Posted in mission blue |

Leave a comment

Youth Ocean Conservation Launches Summit and Partners with Jack Johnson

Today, an update from one of our youth partners, Sean Russell who is doing amazing work for the ocean. Sean, take it away! =-=-= Around the world, our planet’s oceans and their inhabitants face many challenges. As human impacts continuously threaten the health of our marine ecosystems, both locally and globally, it is imperative that we involve youth in a campaign to solve these problems. The Youth Ocean Conservation Summit (YOCS) was created to provide youth participants the opportunity to learn from marine scientists and conservationists about the current threats facing marine ecosystems, both locally and globally. This annual event also teaches participants about the ways other youth are currently working to protect marine ecosystems, and then allows them to work with their peers to develop action plans for their own ocean conservation projects.…
Posted in Partner Stories |

Leave a comment

Mission Blue Announces Gulf of California Expedition

Jacques Cousteau dubbed the Gulf of California, “the world’s aquarium.” The Gulf of California Hope Spot boasts about one-third of the world’s total number of marine mammal species, nearly 900 fish species about 90 of which are endemic to the area and more than 170 seabird species. While it is celebrated as one of the most diverse seas on the planet, much of the Gulf of California as we know it today is under threat from a variety of factors ranging from overfishing to coastal development.  In 2009, Dr. Earle named the Gulf of California one of her top “Hope Spot” locations and vowed to help bring attention and support to the region. By joining Mission Blue’s Gulf of California expedition this September, you will not only have the opportunity to see the area’s spectacular beauty and biodiversity first-hand, but you will help Mission Blue and Dr.…
Posted in mission blue |

Leave a comment

Cabo Pulmo – A work in progress and a cautionary tale for the planet

For my husband Rick and me, an invitation to Happy Hour with friends led to an expedition of a lifetime.  A convergence of common interests, science, and exploration took us recently to Cabo Pulmo, in Baja Sur, Mexico.  A glittering oasis of plenty in an imperiled stretch of Mission Blue’s Gulf of California Hope Spot, Cabo Pulmo is a jewel in the crown of our planet’s marine reserves.  Our expedition was led by Dr. Octavio Aburto, who participated with Dr. Sylvia Earle and Dr. Jeremy Jackson on the film, Mission Blue, partially shot on location in Cabo Pulmo, and his Scripps colleagues; Josh Stewart, Brad Erisman and Tim Rowell.  Rounding out the expedition were world-renowned oceanographer, Dr. Walter Munk and his wife Mary, SIO/Birch Aquarium Executive Director, Dr.…
Posted in mission blue, Partner Stories |

11 Comments

Art brings the coral reef crisis above the surface

By Courtney Mattison Coral reefs have captivated my imagination for as long as I can remember. I am happiest when the exotic forms, vibrant colors and often-venomous appendages of the animals that inhabit a tropical reef dance through the window of my scuba mask as I slowly hover above. Maybe it’s because I’m relatively small and I respect small creatures that can build big beautiful things, but I feel like I relate to corals – arguably one of the least relatable animals – on a very deep level. Artist Courtney Mattison installing Our Changing Seas III at the Tang Museum. © Arthur Evans I often feel like a coral, working in my studio using simple tools and my hands to methodically sculpt and texture clay to construct large, delicate, stony structures that mimic the prolific reef-builders.…
Posted in mission blue, Partner Stories |

1 Comment

Bering Sea Hope Spot on the Edge

One Small Step forward for the Bering Sea Canyons Hope Spot, Two Giant Steps Back!  It has been 10 months since the North Pacific Fishery Management Council indicated that they were willing to consider protections for the Bering Sea Canyons Hope Spot. In April, at the end of long week of Council conversations, they took their next, patiently awaited action on the canyons. While the Council did begin the process to consider management measures to protect coral habitat, they dealt a serious blow to protections by simultaneously dropping Zhemchug Canyon (the largest underwater canyon in the world) and all parts of the ecologically essential shelf-break (Green Belt) off the table. Moving forward, the Bering Sea Canyons policy process will be limited to considering protections for significant concentrations of deep-sea corals in Pribilof canyon, period.  …
Posted in mission blue |

Leave a comment

"With knowing comes caring." - Dr. Sylvia Earle