After hearing a lecture in class regarding fisheries, I remembered seeing a documentary that could be interesting on Netflix. It seems that Netflix is full of great documentaries those days. Anyways, I decided to watch this documentary called Mission Blue. It was a documentary following Dr. Sylvia Alice Earle who is the world’s foremost oceanographer as she is today. She has aged but she is still going strong in her mission to save the ocean from diminishing due to overfishing, pollution, and other threats. In her own words, Dr. Earle said that “if we fail to take care of the ocean, nothing else matters.”
This was a moving documentary and visually beautiful. It discusses some of her past as she grew up in the oceans off the coasts of Florida. She has seen the destruction all over the ocean especially Gulf of Mexico in all of its stages due to humans taking over the land and modernizing it. For example, all the chemicals farmers use seeps into the Mississippi River which spills out into the ocean causing dead zones. Dr. Earle has seen the ocean in all its thriving and abundance days. As the oceans are dying, so is she.
She approaches all of the issues destroying our oceans and the life beneath the surface. The fact that she was there for most of the advancements in marine biology history including being the first person to reach one thousand feet in a manmade submerging suit. I have learned a few interesting facts that I never knew since I am not exposed to oceanic issues that are plaguing our oceans. I learned that sharks are harvested just for their fins and then thrown back into the ocean. Just the fins and imagine what that shark is experiencing during this then thrown back into the ocean to drown since they can not swim. Imagine a human thought process through all this if a human actually suffered this fate. I also leaned that corals in the world are down fifty percent compared to roughly fifty years ago. Fish oils actually comes from the plants that fish eat, not the fish themselves.
I enjoyed this documentary very much because it took me back to my youth where I had an interest in marine biology and its oceans. I can not imagine how Sylvia felt seeing those corals die first hand. She has seen corals and the ocean in its majestic days and to go back there to swim amongst what is now dead must be depressing. Dr. Earle has started a project called Hope Spots which aims to make sections of oceans protected just like our National Parks. It has been a great success so far. I would like to thank her for everything she has done. I can only hope to help the ocean in some way one day.