(Hint: it’s EDUCATION)
Can we protect the human race from itself? Can we ever really stop the exploitation of pollution, plastics and politics? Will overfishing eventually collapse the marine ecosystem, or will we one day achieve harmony and sustainability? Can we stop coral reefs from dying? Will ocean acidification irreparably alter the future of our seas?
These are the conundrums marine conservationists deal with daily, and unfortunately, the answers are as complex as the problems themselves. Yet, there’s no question that scientific research is where solutions begin. Research and data creates the foundation for education, and education leads to conservation and corrective action.
“We know that we must gather scientific data,” said Dr. Guy Harvey, “to understand and evaluate the problems. Then we can use the data to educate the public and work on solutions.”
This is why Guy Harvey has been involved in marine research and education for more than 30 years. It’s also why the Guy Harvey Research Institute (GHRI) was formed in 1999 and has been a leader in cutting-edge research for more than two decades.
Now, the GHRI and the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF) are embarking on a project even more challenging than affixing a satellite tag to a live, squirming 12-foot-long tiger shark — an act GH scientists perform regularly. “It’s critical that we use the knowledge we’re compiling to educate the next generation,” Harvey said. “The youth of today will soon be the leaders of tomorrow. They must understand the threats and gain the passion to work toward sustainable oceans. That’s why our organizations are focusing so much of our energy on education.”
Ah yes — education! It is the fabric of human advancement, and now with COVID-19, its value has catapulted into the stratosphere. Thus, this issue of Guy Harvey Magazine is dedicated to education.
In the following pages, you’ll read about collaborative efforts between the Guy Harvey organization and some of the world’s largest and most advanced learning platforms, such as Discovery Education, Florida Virtual School, Ocean First Education and the Florida Department of Education, just to name a few.
Guy Harvey himself is practicing what he preaches by passing his passion on to his kids, Jessica and Alex, both of whom are both driving forces in marine conservation and educational issues.
“I’m out on the water almost daily,” said Jessica Harvey, who at the age of 30 is already a seasoned conservationist and filmmaker in her own right. “We’re using our many years of research to create educational films and curricula for students and teachers and to lobby governments to protect our precious resources. There is no time to waste.”
Guy Harvey’s educational films are already gaining momentum on Discovery Education, Amazon Prime, YouTube and other outlets. In the coming months, students all over the world — both in the classroom and virtually — will be able to access a wide variety of Guy Harvey marine-related curricula.
“Through our education initiative, we are shaping young minds by explaining how vital it is to have sustainable fisheries and a balance in our waterways,” Harvey said. “I’m encouraged by the progress we’re making, but we still have a long way to go. Fortunately, we’re on the right path and are gaining the right partners helping us to move forward.”