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Foreword by Philippe Cousteau

I remember my first dive in a kelp forest very well. It stands out as one of my favorite dives ever. It was in San Diego and the thrill of diving in such a magnificent underwater forest brought back something that my father had once said "our planet is and oasis in space, a beacon in an otherwise vast and unexplored universe". A few years later I was at a biodiversity conference in the Caribbean. One day in particular we were talking about fisheries management or in this case the lack thereof. As I watched scientists bicker over methodologies and hypotheses I realized that something was missing from all of these proceedings. There was no talk of responsibility or stewardship. As we expend more and more effort to catch less and less fish we miss the point that our duty is not to consume but to protect and conserve. We still believe that the oceans are a never ending resource despite the fact that we have proven time and time again that they are not. For those that would argue economics rule the day I would argue that the continued degradation of our planet is not only wrong; it isn't even in our best interest. Time and time again we have seen that the destruction of habitat or the extinction of a species lead to poverty and destitution, not economic prosperity.

We stand at the dawn of a new age; today we have access to information in ways that my father and grandfather never dreamed of. I hope that we will use it more wisely than we have in the past and that we will learn that we are tied to every living creature in one way or another, and that above all none of us can live without a healthy planet.
-Philippe Cousteau

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