NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette
July 1 — 14, 2011
Mission: IEA (Integrated Ecosystem Assessment)
Geographical Area: Kona Region of Hawaii
Captain: Kurt Dreflak
Science Director: Samuel G. Pooleye, Ph.D.
Chief Scientist: Evan A. Howell
Date: July 1, 2011
My name is Becky Moylan and I am a teacher at Central Middle School in Honolulu, HI, where I teach 8th grade Earth Science. NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) , through its Teacher at Sea Program, is allowing me to join them on their research ship, the Oscar Elton Sette, to see exactly what they are doing and how they are doing it and to participate in the science being conducted. We will be leaving on July 1, 2011 to study an area of the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii. I’m excited to be a part of this endeavor and will be returning home to Honolulu with important knowledge to pass on to my students.
The oceans run our world. A lot of people don’t realize just how important oceans are to our survival. The oceans cover more than 70% of the Earth’s surface. They contain 99% of the living space on earth! Without this space for organisms to survive, there would be at least five fewer phyla of animals on Earth.
Human impacts on the ocean can upset Earth’s biodiversity, which in turn upsets our survival. More than 90% of the trade between countries is carried out by ships and about half the communications between nations use underwater cables. The oceans also interact and affect our weather and atmosphere. Without the ocean currents, Earth’s processes would come to a standstill and die.
Oceans are the most unexplored area of Earth with endless possibilities. Less than 10% of this space has been explored. It is said that the oceans contain nearly 20 million tons of gold. Unexplored plant and animal life could possibly contribute to our health and our way of life. As we know, this precious part of our environment is being polluted, and 80% of ocean pollution is coming from land-based activities.