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Marine Life & Conservation Blogs

Earthdive – a global project to save our oceans (Part 1)

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Introduced by Jeff Goodman

Many years ago on returning from a film trip to Indonesia for the BBC I was met at the airport by Chris Long. We met in the arrivals cafe where he told me of his new project earthdive, a revolutionary concept in citizen science and a global research project for millions of recreational scuba divers, snorkellers and others who can help preserve the health and diversity of our oceans. He asked if I would be interested to be part of it. For the following year I worked with Chris helping to develop this immense project.

Chris was the founder and force behind Sport Aid and Run the World, the biggest mass participation demonstration our planet has ever seen. Inspired by Bob Geldof and Band Aid, Chris organised this game-changing event 34 years ago. It involved almost 20 million people in 89 countries, running simultaneously to demand action for the famine victims of Ethiopia and Sudan.

I Ran The World – Sport Aid is Chris’s new book that details how the former hydroponicist galvanised Bob Geldof, world leaders, celebrities, rock stars and royalty to help change the world. In the process he not only raised £32 million for charity but also succeeded in pressurising governments into cancelling US$100 million of African debt. At the latter end of the book, it tells of the natural progression to try and save our oceans.

Chris Long – earthdive

When I was five I dreamed of being a scuba diver.

It never happened, something got in the way.

Thirty five years ago, I went to Live Aid and it changed my life.

One year later, I founded and organised the biggest mass participation in history, raising £35m for Band Aid, UNICEF and a handful of other international charities and NGO’s. My event, Sport Aid and Run the World, involved 19.8 million people in 89 countries running 10k through their cities to help change the world.

I worked with rock stars, celebrities, royalty, world leaders, athletes and many international sports stars. I met Charles and Diana at Buckingham Palace, had tea with Margaret Thatcher at Number Ten Downing Street and was honoured by the United Nations.

My book I Ran the World, tells the whole story and in Chapter 20 ‘New Beginnings’ I tell the story of how my dream as a five year old finally came true.

Biography

On the surface Chris Long is a regular guy. But scratch a little deeper and you’ll discover an astonishing secret: the founder/director of Earthdive, a company devoted to protecting our oceans, was also the founder and force behind Sport Aid and Run the World, the biggest mass participation demonstration our planet has ever seen.

Inspired by Bob Geldof and Band Aid, Chris organised this game-changing event 34 years ago. It involved almost 20 million people in 89 countries, running simultaneously to demand action for the famine victims of Ethiopia and Sudan.

He has now written a riveting book on how it all happened.

I Ran the World details how the former hydroponicist galvanised Bob Geldof, world leaders, celebrities, rock stars and royalty to help change the world. In the process he not only raised £32 million for charity but also succeeded in pressurising governments into cancelling US$100 million of African debt.

His racy autobiography reveals the triumphs and tragedies behind that turbulent time. How he imitated Bob Geldof to ensure Birmingham’s Olympic bid team got on board, convinced the head of UNICEF to partner Band Aid, met Prince Charles and Princess Diana at Buckingham Palace and took tea with Margaret Thatcher at Number Ten Downing Street – not to mention how close he came to committing suicide along the way.

In the foreword, former UNICEF Head of Special Events Dr. John C Anderson says: “Chris Long had a vision and a dream. He believed that people could do more than listen to music and make donations, they could actively engage in the cause – and what better vehicle than sport?

“I Ran the World is the story of how one man mobilised a team of 130 young volunteers in a small office in London, secured the support of huge organisations like UNICEF and Band Aid and then mobilised 20 million people around the world to run and demand action for Africa.

Chris agonised over writing his book for three decades: laying bare the exultation, high notes and happiness behind his superhuman achievement. . .  tempered with the blood, sweat, tears, depression and despair when it all came tumbling down.

But he decided too many people were ignoring the current crises – climate change, marine pollution, overfishing, the population explosion, the ongoing agony of refugees fleeing religious and ideological wars. And he has challenged today’s young people to take up his baton.

We’re living in dangerous times,” he says. “And never more so than during this pandemic. Finding a remedy is a matter of survival and that solution lies with all of us, not just our elected representatives. We can and must change the world in which we live. That’s why I wrote this book.

Come back tomorrow to read an extract from the book….

I Ran the World by Chris Long is available on Amazon Books here.

Visit www.earthdive.com to find out more!

Jeff Goodman is the Editor-at-Large for Scubaverse.com with responsibility for conservation and underwater videography. Jeff is an award-winning TV wildlife and underwater cameraman and film maker who lives in Cornwall, UK. With over 10,000 dives to his credit he has dived in many different environments around the world.

Marine Life & Conservation

The BiG Scuba Podcast… with Julianne Zielfle

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Ian and Gemma chat about what they have been up to and we hear from a caller on The BiG Scuba Bat Phone. Our guest is Julianne Zielfle. Julianne became a certified diver in 1985 and she is an award-winning speaker, photographer and media professional. She first appeared in dive magazines in the late 1980s when she met Stephen Frink. She worked on Cousteau’s Campaign on Rights of Future Generations in 1994. She co-chaired the Hans Hass Film Festival and was co-creator of the Dive Industry Awards Gala in 2000. She has been helping schools in the South Pacific since 1992 and teaches in her local school district. In 1999, she was recognized by D.A.N. with the Outstanding Volunteer of the Year Award.

You can follow Julianne Zielfle on Facebook here.


Find more podcast episodes and information at www.thebigscuba.com and on most social platforms @thebigscuba 

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Marine Life & Conservation

Jeff chats to… Marine Biologist and Underwater Videographer Jake Davies (Watch Video)

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In this exclusive Zoom interview, Jeff Goodman, Scubaverse Editor-at-Large, chats to Jake Davies, Marine Biologist, HSE Professional scuba diver, underwater videographer (using videos and 360 clips for VR) and CAA licensed drone pilot. 

Jake grew up on Pen Llŷn, North Wales and coming from a maritime family meant that from a young age the underwater world and marine life have played a major role in his life. His interest in marine life and the sea led to him studying Marine Biology at Bangor University where he was successful in obtaining a year in industry with the Intertidal & Coastal team at Natural Resources Wales.

In 2017 Jake was successfully awarded a Sea-Changers Grant to run ‘Dive Into Monitoring: Seagrass’ surveys with SeaSearch North Wales. The surveys aimed to gather updated information on the Seagrass bed in Porthdinllaen with volunteer divers and local dive clubs.

As a media diver, Jake has worked as part of the dive team (Marine Ecosol) filming for BBC Wales Hidden Wales with Will Millard (Lazerbeam Productions & Folk Films).

Footage which Jake has filmed off the Welsh Coast, as well as the Canary Islands, has been featured for a variety of BBC programmes including an episode of Countryfile where he was interviewed about the Seagrass in Porthdinllaen, Wales along with the rest of the Project Seagrass team. He is also a blogger and contributor to Scubaverse @JDScuba, and a co-director of Under Water Wales @dandwrcymru.

As well as being a HSE Scuba Diver Jake is also employed as the Project Coordinator for Angel Shark Project: Wales. He is also a Project Leader on a Save Our Seas Foundation Project.

Through sharing underwater videos and photos of amazing and unique wildlife/habitats that are found beneath the waves along the Welsh Coast as well as abroad Jake hopes to inspire people to go beneath the waves and making the underwater world more accessible for all.

Find out more about Jake and his work at: https://jakeddavies1996.wixsite.com/jdscuba


Rather listen to a podcast? Listen to the audio HERE on the new Scubaverse podcast channel at Anchor FM.

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

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This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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