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Why the Ocean Matters to Everyone, Everywhere

PUBLISHED: October 30, 2012

Sylvia Earle

In the Fall 2012 issue of VQR, we are proud to feature an article from Sylvia A. Earle, the former Chief Scientist of U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Named a “Living Legend” by the Library of Congress and the first “Hero for the Planet” by Time magazine, she has lectured in more than eighty countries, led more than a hundred expeditions—including the first team of women aquanauts—and logged nearly 7,000 hours underwater with a record solo dive to 1,000 meters and nine saturation dives.

She writes of the most significant discovery concerning the ocean:

It is not too big to fail. Fifty years ago, we could not see limits to what we could put into the ocean, or what we could take out. Fifty years into the future, it will be too late to do what is possible right now. We are in a “sweet spot” in time. Never again will there be a better time to take actions that can insure an enduring place for ourselves within the living systems that sustain us. We are at an unprecedented, pivotal point in history when the decisions we make in the next ten years will determine the direction of the next 10,000.

Read the rest of Earle’s incredible essay on the state of our oceans: The Sweet Spot in Time.


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