Julia Whitty – For Love and Protection of the Deep Ocean (ONE of TWO)

I met Julia Whitty in August 2010 after her investigation of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster. This is an updated program of a memorable evening triggered by the August 2016 release of the movie: Deepwater Horizon that makes no mention of the ecological consequences.

In a small Northern California town where she lives she was giving a reading from her book: Deep Blue Home, An Intimate Ecology of Our Wild Ocean. That book had been described as: “breathtakingly learned and lyrical, written with humor, reverence and curiosity.”

Julia Whitty is a diver, former nature documentary filmmaker, author and environmental correspondent for Mother Jones.

She explained why the deep ocean is the foundation of life for the upper layer of the sunlit sea. Many whales, dolphins, seals, sea turtles, sharks, manta rays, and smaller predatory fish are nocturnal hunters, dependent on the movements of a vast community of organisms that live in the deep ocean. That community is known only since the 1920s as the Deep Scattering Layer. And this Deep Scattering Layer that rises and falls with day and night and that is visited by the creatures of the sunlit sea is threatened by oil spills.

I begin this program with a reading by Julia Whitty from Deep Blue Home followed by her comments on the BP oil spill. The reading is introducing the Deep Scattering Layer in an indirect way. A whale is sinking to the bottom of the sea and that journey from sun to twilight to perpetual darkness introduces you to the creatures of another world.

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