Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Diving into BLUE

Showing Our Love of the Now Noisy, More Acidic, Marine Plastiscapes

Conservationist J. Nichols launched the BLUE Ocean Film Festival with his talk on Oceanophilia, the neuroscience of emotion and the ocean. Although given how we tend to treat the ocean, how much we love this precious resource is not all that obvious.

As J. puts it, we put too much in and take too much out of it. All kinds of marine debris, that animals consume or get caught in accidently and die, is filling our marine ecosystems. Plastic is forming what J. has called “Plastiscapes,” brought together by swirling ocean currents. In addition, more and more carbon dioxide is taken up by the ocean, making it more acidic. And as more and more of us to be near the ocean, we are also are degrading its coastlines.

Less in, less out, protect the edge, is J.’s message. He also wants us to know we have reason to hope. We have unprecedented knowledge of what is happening in what had once seemed to be an “endless bounty.” We have a global network of passionate activists working on the ocean’s behalf. And we have the power of creative communication.

J., who is both a scientist and artful communicator, says that we can no longer afford to separate emotion and reason; rather it is our emotions that allow us to make reasonable decisions. After all, advertments already pull on our emotions to make us buy products, such as Coke saying “Open Happiness.” We need to capitalize on this NeuroMarking and transform it into NeuroConservation.

“The mind ocean connection is understudied. We need to change that, we need to dig in and understand the mind-ocean connection,” says J. “It is time for a full court press. It is not time to be on the sidelines.”

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