Tonight on PBS: Explore the Ocean
Escape the madness for a few hours tonight and enjoy the hidden treasures and smiling creatures of the underwater world.
PBS is debuting a six-part series that follows Jacques Cousteau's son Jean-Michel as he explores the Northwest Hawaiian Island Archipelago (click here for the schedule):
A generation ago, Jacques-Yves Cousteau revealed the oceans' mysteries to millions of landlocked PBS viewers and inspired a groundswell of public awareness of the unique problems faced by the world's marine environments. Now, 30 years later, Jacques' son Jean-Michel Cousteau and his team of "oceanauts" have set sail to explore dangerous and spectacular locales across the globe.According to the SF Chronicle's David Wiegand, KQED is screening the film today at the White House. "Let's hope someone watches."
Throughout the Cousteau team's six-week journey at sea, they discover that though the islands are far beyond human reach, they have been affected dramatically by global debris that washes up on shore. The debris also damages coral reefs, due to the islands' location along the convergence zone of the entire North Pacific Ocean and the North Pacific gyre. This "pollution highway" accounts for many of the hundreds of seabirds that lie dead along the beaches, with debris lodged in their decomposing bodies. On many of the islands the team explores, the land and seascapes are littered with the discarded products of human society from thousands of miles away - not just fishing nets, but cigarette lighters, golf balls, toothbrushes and children's toys from all over the world.