[Coral-List] Sexy scientists and Marine Sanctuaries

David McGuire david at trilliumfilms.net
Mon Mar 27 14:52:31 EST 2006

Dear Listers,

It is with great interest I read the thread of selling science and  
using sexy science or hero types.  I too was inspired by J. Cousteau  
and Wild Kingdom and went on to study marine biology and  
environmental science.   I have worked in the science education field  
and am now completing a shark- coral reef conservation documentary.   
We just interviewed Dr Enric Sala, Pew Fellow and a rising star in  
ocean conservation who is working to make serious impacts on the  
public perception of ocean conservation issues.
His sincerity, excellent analogies and panache all qualify him as an  
intriguing ocean spokesman.

We hope that Enric's articulate nature and passion will convey itself  
to the audience.  He also looks great on camera.
Perhaps he can be one of our next ocean awareness pioneers.

By the way, Sylvia Earle has been and still is one of the greatest  
ocean advocates as well as a highly respected scientist.  Lets not  
forget her indefatigable efforts. The beauty of her words, her  
scientific deeds, and her person far exceed M. Cousteau in my mind.

Our film, focusing primarily on reef sharks but addressing l threats  
to all sharks- including shark finning, is not  reality TV and may  
not wrest the gameboys out of kids hands, but we hope the vivid shark  
images, the sailing and Polynesian cultural elements will draw some  
attention towards the gravity of the issues to a general audience.   
This film will not be your typical IMAX eye candy and brush over the  
issues (no slur on the film makers who produce these enviable  
products- more the producers looking for the big return), nor will it  
be sharks leaping out of the air or tearing into seals, but instead  
will highlight important conservation issues including coral reef  
habitat destruction.

By nature this will reduce the audience who will be required to think  
and face the issues.  However, to maintain a general audience, we  
have to reduce some of the science- it is the inevitable compromise.

We conclude with support of the proposed 14th National Marine  
Sanctuary- another thread I would like to invite comment and  
information about.  I have just returned from hawaii and working with  
some of the NOAA folks and have great content and material on the  
Northwest Hawaiian Islands.

We hope to complete the film by August for 07 PBS and 06 film  
festival screenings.

Regarding the marine sanctuary off the Florida keys: The NWHI do not  
have the direct human impacts the reefs off Florida must endure and  
are better situated geographically to withstand some of the sea water  
increases, but as recent bleaching events reveal, they are not immune  
to degradation.

Has their been success in fisheries management through no take  
reserves in  the Florida sanctuary, and are they designed with  
connectedness in mind?  Is anyone aware of areas where coral reefs in  
the sanctuary has recovered relative to areas outside, or perhaps is  
even less degraded?

Thank you for your thoughts.

David McGuire
Producer, Trillium Films
Sausalito CA

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