Jon took the Father’s Day weekend to heart, so please enjoy the inaugural “Alli’s Alley” from our own in-house sea turtle expert — President’s Corner to return next week.
Turtles on the way up!
Sometimes, it seems like the world’s problems are too large for an individual to really make a difference. Will recycling this bottle really help our ocean plastic problem? Does taking public transportation rather than driving really reduce emissions that much? But every now and then, meaningful good news about the ocean reminds me that we can each make a difference, and we should never stop trying. A story that inspired me last week described a comeback by loggerhead sea turtles nesting on the Atlantic coast. A few short decades ago, many scientists feared these gentle giants could be on the brink of extinction. Now, thanks in large part to conservation efforts — from protecting individual nests to using turtle excluder devices on fish and shrimp nets to increasing environmental protections (including listing them under the Endangered Species Act) — subpopulations of loggerheads from Florida through the Carolinas are on the rise. After spending a few years doing sea turtle research myself, I know that there are thousands of scientists, researchers, volunteers, and policymakers throughout the decades who have contributed to this comeback, to whom I’m endlessly thankful. It’s good news indeed, just in time for World Sea Turtle Day.
Meet The Machines That Could Unlock The Ocean’s Deepest Secrets
These autonomous subsea robots may someday predict storms, detect oil leaks, locate shipwrecks, and slow down climate change. In 2016, the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, a global competition sponsored by Royal Dutch Shell plc, announced it would dole out $7 million to the technologies that could demonstrably advance the knowledge of the Earth’s most mysterious frontier: the ocean. Announced in June, the winner was the General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans (GEBCO)-Nippon Foundation (NF) alumni, a diverse union of scientists made up of members from 14 different countries, all graduates from the University of New Hampshire’s postgraduate program in ocean bathymetry.
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