The Deep Ocean is now the most critical frontier that humanity has ever faced and the next giant leap for mankind must be down into the Deep Ocean – to explore, discover and understand it. The only way we are going to reconnect humanity with the ocean is if we put mankind at the centre of this new wave of exploration. Here’s my take on it @TEDx Bermuda.
The Deep Ocean, below 100m, is the last great wilderness on Earth. It is the largest, most ecologically significant part of our planet, containing 95% of the biosphere and yet it also remains the least known.
With an average depth of 4270m, only 0.05% of the ocean floor has ever been mapped in great detail. Even less has been seen by human eyes. Millions of new species, behaviours and scientific discoveries are yet to be made. We know the ocean gives life to our planet. It gives us oxygen, water, food, energy and a stable climate. We all need a healthy ocean to survive and thrive.
Today, acidification, temperature rises, industrial and agricultural chemicals, plastics pollution, and chronic overfishing are destroying its resilience to support life. Most people remain unaware that our ocean is now undergoing its most severe disruption for at least 65 million years. Now more than ever we need to know how and when these changes will affect our climate, food security, the atmosphere, the carbon cycle and even the oxygen we breathe.
We need to go there, to explore, discover, understand and inform the legal, political and economic decisions that will define our future. And humanity desperately needs to reconnect with the ocean. To do that, we need to find a new story to engage the world. We need a new heroic journey of exploration that can inspire us to confront the challenges ahead. We need a story on the scale of the Space Race. Witnessing mankind in space captivated and united a public looking skywards.
Today, we need to witness mankind in the deep. Today, we need to live in yellow submarines…