Deep HOPE for our future. (Deep Hope)
Up to 48% of all man-made carbon emissions are stored in marine plants and the oceans they inhabit.
The world’s oceans are home to the largest mass migration on Earth. Animals ranging in size from pin-headed sized copepods to whales travel from the depths of the deep ocean trenches to the surface waters in search of food on a nightly basis. While the larger animals eat the smaller ones, it is the tiniest of these creatures that are absolutely critical for mitigating the carbon dioxide that we are pumping into the atmosphere.
The photic zone (the zone in the ocean where sunlight can penetrate) is home to countless millions of microscopic plants. These tiny plants use sunlight and carbon dioxide to make carbohydrates that they need to survive. Rich in carbohydrates, these plants then become food for larger animals, like copepods, which in turn become food for even larger animals. As daylight approaches, these animals return to the depths of the oceans taking their meals of carbon rich plants with them.
The carbon is then recycled at great depths in the form of feces, dissolved organic carbon or through respiration. In this manner, it has been calculated that as much as 48% of all man-made carbon emissions are being absorbed and stored in the oceans. This represents a huge amount of the carbon cycle; it is critical that we are able to study this further in order to assess the future of our planet’s health. The Deep HOPE submersibles are the perfect vehicles to take on this crucial task.