I’m excited. The announcement of James’ Cameron’s forthcoming attempt to make a solo dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench – 36,000+ feet (7 miles) – to the Challenger Deep represents so much for our species. Indeed, it is time to look inward at our own planet – both the physical places that we have never seen or experienced, and the secrets that lie dormant, awaiting discovery.
This is pure exploration…
It’s a long way down, that goes without saying. What’s most interesting is that even just this single, short foray will bring back enough data and new knowledge to fuel vast research enterprises, and related innovation/technological advancement to do it all over again. Imagine if we had routine access to these extreme environments? This accessibility affords us the next ‘industrial revolution’.
Of course, these bold steps do much to illuminate the ocean’s extremes. The reality is that while the Challenger Deep may be the tip of the iceberg, the rest of the iceberg is melting away faster than we can study it – or even get to those other extremes. So much work to do, and so little time.
To Mr. Cameron – good luck, dive safe, and thank you for taking this very necessary step for humankind.