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Paul Watson (Sea Shepherd Conservation Society) Interview

Most of you know by now that the International Justice court in The Hague recently ruled in favor of Australia and New Zealand, and against Japan regarding the killing of whales under the guise of “Research.”   Bill Maher’s subsequent interview with Paul Watson, founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, was expected to be spent talking about the decision.   A few minutes were spent on that, but within the following video, they went a lot further.  No one to date has ever done such a fine, eloquent and concise job of describing the state of the oceans and the consequences of continuing to do things as we’ve been doing them. Read more

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Colorado Ocean Coalition Symposium a Rousing Success!

From the opening through to closing for the night, and every moment in between, the Colorado Ocean Coalition’s 1st anniversary Symposium was a rousing success!  Today’s event started out with remarks by Vicki Nichols Goldstein.  When Vicki introduced Dr. Sylvia Earle, the crowd greeted her with an enthusiastic and well-deserved standing ovation, and that set the tone for the rest of the afternoon’s presentations.  The overall theme was “Making Waves In Colorado”, focusing on how the Rockies are indeed akin to the ocean, and how all ecosystems are intrinsically linked, attached and incorporated.  The point of the symposium was to teach about how we are indeed affected and impacting the oceans of the world, and some of the ways in which we can all be part of the solution.

Dr. Sylvia Earle, National Geographic Explorer In Residence

Dr. Sylvia Earle received a standing ovation as welcome to the symposium

 

Dr. Earle has been a forerunner and champion of the oceans for over 2 score of years, and a continuing inspiration to many of us involved in conservation and marine sciences today.  Few in the field would not know of her pioneering work, living below the ocean’s surface for extended periods of time, exploring the Innerspace of this planet, and sharing her discoveries with us all.  Each new discovery just seemed to beg more questions, and Sylvia Earle was always leading those inquiring mind who wanted to know.

In her presentation during the first session of the Symposium, she poetically and profoundly noted “Even if you never touch the ocean, the ocean touches you with every breath you take.”

Ever modest and gracious, her presentation went on to show us some of the wonders of the deep, while reminding us that we’ve only begun to explore the 70% of this blue planet that is the oceans.  She points out that we are unable to visit the depths of the oceans, noting that simply traveling to 5,000 feet ABOVE sea level wouldn’t be good enough, that we must scale ALL of the height of a mountain… and it should not be good enough that we explore only the first fraction of the ocean’s depths either.  Indeed, there are many species still being discovered, many wonders we’ve yet to see.

Dr. Sylvia Earle speaking during a slideshow presentation

Dr. Earle shares some of the wonders of the ocean during her Rocky Mountains of the Sea presentation.

There were many booths along the Bridge between the Auditorium and the smaller meeting rooms.  Participants included the Colorado chapter of Sea Shepherd, the 5 Gyres Institute, the Oceanic Preservation Society, NOAA and the National Marine Sanctuaries, Plastic Pollution Coalition, Teens4Oceans, Windhorse Lightships L3C, Green Apple, and Wild Goose Engineering… and that’s only about half of the booths!  (Apologies to those not named.  Please contact us to add your organization to the list if we’ve unwittingly missed you.)

The 5 Gyres Institute's Anna Cummins explaining how the Garbage Patch affects us all

The 5 Gyres Institute's Anna Cummins explaining how the Garbage Patch affects us all

Throughout the day, at least 3 presentation rooms were packed at all times.  Teachers had a professoinal workshop, expert adventurers shared their tales, and people helped the guests to better understand the ocean, plastics, and other threats to the watery majority of the planet, and the ways in which the oceans of the world and the lands are inextricably linked.  After the presentations, most all allowed time for Questions and Answers with the panels and speakers.

Q&A with Daniella Russo, Marcus Eriksen, Anna Cummmins and Dianna Cohen

Q&A with Daniella Russo, Marcus Eriksen, Anna Cummmins and Dianna Cohen

Topics included “How Colorado Flows to the Ocean” and “Climate Change from 30 Feet Under.”  Children’s presentations were also ample, ensuring an enjoyable, optimistic and informative day for everyone.

A few more photos of the event are provided below:

Louie Psihoyos, Director of "The Cove", with Erron (Dive Colorado)

Louie Psihoyos, Director of "The Cove", with Erron (Dive Colorado)

Billy D. Causey, SE Regional Director of the National Marine Sanctuaries (NOAA)

Billy Causey, PhD, SE Regional Director of NOAA's National Marine Sanctuaries, during a presentation.

Dan Basta, Director of NOAA's National Marine Sanctuaries program

Dan Basta, Director of NOAA's National Marine Sanctuaries program.

Dr. Sylvia Earle, graciously and tirelessly signing copies of her book, "The World Is Blue"

Dr. Sylvia Earle, graciously and tirelessly signing copies of her book, "The World Is Blue"

Piles of plastic washing ashore in Hawaii from all over the Pacific Rim.

Plastics wash ashore in Hawaii from all over the Pacific Rim.

Oil Wells of the Gulf of New Mexico

Oil Wells of the Gulf of New Mexico

A map showing the US waterways, and how they funnel into the Gulf of Mexico

Water from most of the US flows into the Gulf of Mexico

JT, founder of Protect The Ocean, gets the pleasure of meeting Dr. Sylvia Earle

JT, thrilled to meet "Her Deepness," Dr. Sylvia Earle

and finally, a message and goal regarding the use of disposable plastics:

Four Challenges regarding disposable plastics

A challenge, from one of the presentations

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Dr. Sylvia Earle, Louie Psihoyos & Many More at Colorado Ocean Coalition Symposium

If you’re anywhere near Denver or Boulder, Colorado, this is one you won’t want to miss!  The Colorado Ocean Coalition is celebrating their first anniversary with an unparalleled ocean symposium.

Colorado Ocean Coalition logoTomorrow, November 13, 2011, beginning shortly after noon at the Boulder Public Library, the Colorado Ocean Coalition is sponsoring an amazing list of guest speakers for an ocean symposium.  The daytime events will be open to the public, and evening sessions are part of a fundraiser.   Dr. Sylvia Earle is a life-long champion of the ocean and Explorer-In-Residence with National Geographic.  Louie Psihoyos has been a National Geographic photographer and won an Academy Award for his documentary, “The Cove.”  These  two giants are amongst several great speakers scheduled to provide very enlightening presentations.  Jim Toomey, the cartoonist of Sherman’s Lagoon, David Helvarg (“50 Ways To Save The Ocean”,) Dan Basta (Director of NOAA’s Marine Sanctuary program, and representatives from the Plastic Pollution Coalition and the 5 Gyres Institute are also amongst guest speakers.  Check out the afternoon schedule!

According to the Colorado Ocean Coalition press release, presentation subjects include  “a variety of climate/ocean topics, marine protected areas, plastics and environmental impacts, sustainable seafood, and agricultural and watershed connections.”

Dr. Sylvia Earle, Ocean Champion and National Geographic Explorer In Residence

Dr. Sylvia Earle

Special guests include Dr. Sylvia Earle, National Geographic Explorer inResidence, Jim Toomey, cartoonist of Sherman’s Lagoon, David Helvarg, 50 Ways to Save the Ocean, Dan Basta, Director of NOAA’s National Marine Sanctuary Program, Plastic Pollution Coalition, 5 Gyres Institute, Margo Pellegrino, famous paddler and rower, and others.   The press release goes on to share that  “Teens4Oceans and Keep it Clean will be offering programs for youth of all ages throughout the event. Teacher workshops by the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) and Explore The Ocean by Google will be held. Organizations will be disseminating information throughout the library on subjects ranging from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to what Coloradans can do to protect our oceans.”

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the other 3/4 of the planet, this is an extraordinary opportunity to get the straight story right from the seahorse’s mouth!   We thank Vicki Goldstein and all the others who have worked to bring this symposium to fruition.  Happy birthday, Colorado Ocean Coalition!

Directions to the Boulder Public Library can be gotten from this link.