Kelp forests are true forests providing shelter and food for over 1,000 species of animals and plants that live within them. Giant kelp grow at depths below 100ft, sending their leaf like fronds to the surface to create a dense canopy. 

Kelp forests of the Channel Islands experience both warm water currents from the South and cold water currents from the North. This mixing of currents creates a highly productive system and a diversity of organisms that is only found over a much greater area of the California coast. 


(Image credit: U.S. Navy)

Look at that picture and consider the question.

Why are there mountains at that part of the ocean but not in most of the others?

Hot spot? Oceanic ridge?

The answer is because that’s the only spot where a ship’s been.

72% of the Earth’s surface is below the ocean. Most of the Southern Hemisphere hasn’t been explored however and according to geophysicist Robert Ballard, “There are only ever four or five people on the ocean floor at any one time.”

People played golf on the Moon before anyone entered the single largest feature on our own planet, the Mid-Ocean Ridge which covers almost a quarter of the planet.

It’s remarkable that there are people conceiving of ways to colonize other moons and planets and yet where are all the ocean colonies?

Most of the planet doesn’t get touched by Sunlight. At the deepest parts of the oceans, sunlight cannot penetrate and yet life thrives there, living off of chemosynthesis and the heat from the Earth’s core. These same conditions could enable life on Europa and Enceladus.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is America’s other exploration program (NASA’s sibling). One year of NASA’s funding (which is not a lot) could fund our entire oceanic exploration program… for 1,600 years.

Earth is a planet in space. It would do us well to remember this. There’s still so much to learn from our mother planet, why spurn these valuable lessons?

The BP Oil Spill Happened 5 Years Ago Today. We're Still Paying the Price.

The Deepwater Horizon disaster, by the numbers.

U.S. Coast Guard/ZUMA

The Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico five years ago today, killing 11 men and sending nearly 5 million barrels of oil into the sea. After the well was finally plugged, the national media went home, but the story is still very much unfolding everywhere from federal courtrooms to Louisiana backyards.

Let’s have a look back at the nation’s worst-ever oil spill, by the numbers:

Icon credits (via Noun Project unless otherwise noted): Oil barrel—Marco Hernandez; leaky pipe—Evan Udelsman; airplane—Luis Prado; boat—Kevin Chu; cash—Natalie Clay; eviction—Luis Prado; money paper—Alex Tai; pelican—Jennifer Gamboa; birds—Joe Looney; dolphins—Matthew Hall; oil spill—Andrew Hainen; permit—Luis Prado; oil rig—Patrick Trouvé; tourist—Jerald Kohrs; oyster—RedKoala/Shutterstock

today is EARTH DAY

we are rapidly consuming the earth’s resources.
there are small things we can do as a community that makes a big difference for the planet:

less paper means less trees being cut down.
use digital tickets, paymeny services and installment software. cancel unecessary paper mail statements and request digital invoices from service providers

28,000 species are expected to become extinct by the next 25 years due to deforestation. plant a tree in our SHOP

buy from local farmers or farmers’ markets reducing the amount of greenhouse gas created when products are flown or trucked

one less meat-based meal a week helps animals, people, the environment and your health. LEARN

our oceans are dying due to pollution, over-fishing, and acidification, is an ecological catastrophe soon to have a devastating impact on all life on earth. help improve the condition of our oceans by supporting Sylvia Earles’

use a reusable container and fill it with tap water. most plastic takes thousands of years to decompose

save on energy and electricity when possible to lower the amount of carbon dioxide that is released into the environment. carbon dioxide is the main human cause of global warming

In a letter today, 75 marine scientists urged President Obama to rethink plans for oil and gas exploration off the Atlantic Coast, which would entail seismic tests by energy companies seeking new deposits to drill. The high-volume air gun explosions used for acoustic testing can harm and even kill whales, dolphins, and other marine mammals. If the Obama administration opens the Atlantic coast to drilling, these animals are sure to suffer, the scientists say.

Because whales depend on sound waves to communicate, feed, mate, and travel, the blasting can disrupt the reproduction and feeding of blue whales and other endangered whales “over vast ocean areas,” the letter says. It expresses special concern for the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale, of which only 500 remain.

The blasts also “could have potentially massive impacts on fish populations,” according to the letter. In some countries seismic testing has driven away commercial species, resulting in dramatic drops in catch rates. Studies also show the air guns could kill fish eggs and larvae, interfere with breeding, and make some species more vulnerable to predators.  

“People are rightly concerned about the dangers of offshore oil spills, but seismic blasting is likely to have a terrible impact on Atlantic sea life before the first well is even drilled,” said Michael Jasny, director of NRDC’s Marine Mammal Protection Project.

Learn more. And help protect whales by taking action here