11:30 p.m., February 5, 2022
A summit dedicated to the oceans, for the navigator that you’re, is that essentially excellent news?
Throughout my varied adventures at sea, I moved ahead, stroke after stroke. This summit is precisely the identical factor. Admittedly, the findings are alarming: the acidification of the oceans, overfishing, the tons of waste dumped at sea, the dearth of governance… However catastrophic discourse usually leads us to inaction. That is the primary time that a global summit on these ocean points has been organized and it’s supported by France. This isn’t nothing and we should rejoice!
What do you anticipate?
We should collect and never level the finger at those that don’t. Ecologists, shipowners, communities, researchers and coaching organizations should work collectively, break down borders for a larger trigger, to hitch forces to save lots of this heritage of humanity that’s the massive blue. The survival of humanity depends upon the seas of the globe. So we need to say to heads of state: we’re relying on you. I hope that this summit will even be a chance for the European Union to lastly handle this topic successfully.
Can we anticipate concrete bulletins?
Initially, there is a matter of information. However we additionally anticipate motion on plastic air pollution, the excessive seas, unlawful fishing. Every year, between 7 and 10 million tonnes of fish are discarded at sea. This can be a colossal waste! Unlawful fishing is an estimated 30 million tonnes. Aquaculture is definitely the long run, however once you want 5 to 10 kilos of fishmeal to feed a kilo of bluefin tuna, it’s a must to marvel. In my life, I’ve spent extra time on the oceans than on land. While you’re at sea, once you see an oil slick after having been among the many whales three days earlier, you get sick of your abdomen. We marvel what we missed. Professions of religion are now not sufficient.
What position will you play in it?
I’m engaged on the drafting of an academic program for a greater data of the marine setting with the Ministry of Nationwide Schooling and Unesco. Schooling is one of the best lever. Understanding higher means loving higher, and due to this fact higher defending our oceans. I all the time attempt to present how the oceans have an effect on us all, whether or not we stay close to or removed from the ocean.
Is that what you clarify to kids, together with your Basis?
We have now developed packages distributed freed from cost in faculties to teach kids from kindergarten to highschool about defending the oceans. It has been my workhorse for years. Issues have modified so much, the Ministry of Nationwide Schooling has modified its packages, the lecturers are very dedicated. It is thrilling as a result of it makes us imagine in it. It’s essential to “maritimise” the consciences, it’s basic. Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer additionally desires to relaunch sea courses for precedence training areas. It is one other technique to uncover the marine setting. As a part of my Basis, we are going to co-finance them, present them with academic instruments to assist them. In September, will probably be one of many flagship initiatives of Nationwide Schooling. It’s by way of training that we’ll make issues occur, by elevating consciousness amongst as many individuals as potential from an early age.
How do kids react once you meet them?
I inform them about my crusing journeys, the time the watermaker broke down, the time I needed to drink my urine within the roaring forties… that is for certain, it is a loss chief to get them . Youth wants this contact with nature. Kids love issues which are pure, lovely and mysterious. You need to see their heads once you discuss to them concerning the large squid which has the most important eyes within the animal kingdom and which is able to encourage a robotic for NASA. The ocean is the oxygen we breathe, the meals of tomorrow, 22,000 medical molecules, renewable energies, local weather regulation… so many assets important to our survival. However we do not know them properly sufficient. We all know the floor of the moon higher than the depths.
Youth wants this contact with nature
Eric Tabarly all the time mentioned: for the French, the oceans are what they’ve on their backs when they’re mendacity on their seaside towels… The oceans are the good issues forgotten in historical past. We have now not invested sufficient within the marine setting. In France, we make investments 100 instances extra in house than within the depths. We ship Curiosity to Mars however we solely know three to five% of marine species! There isn’t any state that has taken the lead on this topic.
Can France do it?
France has the second largest maritime house on this planet. We’re due to this fact authentic to take this management. I’m additionally satisfied that a maritime France may relaunch French cohesion. France should develop into a pacesetter in rising sectors: aquaculture, algae, biofuel. However Asia is way forward, for instance on algae or on maritime routes to manipulate the world financial system. The Chinese language have 96 ports of their possession: Valencia, Trieste, shares in Antwerp, Genoa, Marseilles. We have now states which have an offensive coverage. It’s time for France to develop into conscious of its wealth due to our abroad territories.
Will we achieve defending the excessive seas?
In the present day, 60% of the excessive seas is with out actual jurisdiction. It is a Wild West in which you’ll take no matter you need. There may be an pressing want for governance to protect this world heritage of humanity. This summit ought to be a chance to mark this dedication. As a result of the ocean is the keystone of the survival of humanity. Life was born within the depths of the oceans and, right now, we return there to search out options and guarantee our future. The massive query for humanity is: how are we going to maintain a wholesome planet, a wholesome local weather and on the identical time feed, deal with, work and protect the well-being of quickly practically 10 billion individuals? The ocean is threatened however it’s on the identical time the answer to all our main questions. Earlier than us lies an ocean of the long run.
“The blue planet is just not a spare planet”
Why do not we do extra?
We lack a imaginative and prescient. We want a political impetus. We anticipate from this summit an ambition carried to the very best summit of the States. However beware, the blue planet is just not a spare planet. Errors made on land should not be repeated at sea. We should discover the oceans whereas making certain that this doesn’t degrade an already fragile marine setting. Quite than exploiting nature, we should draw inspiration from it! The construction of shark pores and skin, for instance, with its denticles, prevents the adhesion of micro organism and has due to this fact been used to create a coating for hospitals to forestall the proliferation of micro organism and nosocomial illnesses; tomorrow’s pacemaker, with out batteries, shall be impressed by the center of the whale, AZT, to combat in opposition to AIDS, comes from herring… and these are just some examples amongst 1000’s. After we say all this, it’s virtually out of selfishness that we should always protect our oceans!
Emmanuel Macron desires to relaunch the exploration of the oceans. Some concern exploitation of deep-sea assets. Is that this your case?
You’ll be able to all the time be afraid, that is for certain. And do not be naive. We have now seen so many areas the place lobbies are taking on. We should due to this fact be very agency and keep in mind that the oceans usually are not a spare planet. You need to get to know them higher by drawing inspiration from them and never by looting them. I hope that the President’s will is to carry a summit above all to speak concerning the preservation of the oceans.
Are you optimistic about man’s skill to react earlier than it is too late?
Man is able to reaching challenges larger than himself. When I discovered myself in my boat, with waves ten meters deep, the boat turning over 17 instances in the identical night time, my solely little arms for rowing… I questioned what I had come to do there , I additionally realized that it may cease at any time and that the earth would proceed to show in the identical manner. That is the remark of an excellent fragility. However we even have a rare energy in every of us. We have now an unbelievable skill to attain issues greater than ourselves. However, exactly, the preservation of the oceans is a larger problem than us. We will do it. The values of the ocean – solidarity, generosity, braveness – are what we have to save the blue planet. That is the message that have to be conveyed.