Fabien Cousteau, Third Generation Explorer, Environmentalist and Filmmaker
J. Charles Fox, Program Director, Oceans Five
Moderator: Ira Flatow, Science Friday, NPR
Compass Summit, a forum for true interaction and exchange, examines some of today's most pressing problems through the lens of global citizenship, recognizing that human ingenuity is an unlimited resource. Guided by NPR's Ira Flatow, an intimate group of some of the world's best thinkers and doers convened along the rugged Palos Verdes coastline on Oct 23-26, 2011 at Terranea Resort to engage in meaningful conversation, ask questions, and challenge ideas -- we invite you to join in the conversation.
Fabien Cousteau is a third generation explorer, environmentalist and filmmaker. He co-launched Natural Entertainment, which is working on numerous projects related to explorationand environmental awareness through television and other media. Living a childhood dream of "becoming a shark", Fabien orchestrated a three year long project resulting in an extensive expedition to study the much feared great white shark in his innovative and unique shark shaped submersible. The result was a primetime show on CBS entitled "The Mind of a Demon" ( http://www.cbs.com/specials/shark/ ). In 2006, Fabien once again partnered with his father, Jean Michel Cousteau, and sister Celine to complete a three year multi hour series for PBS called Ocean Adventures (www.pbs.org/kqed/oceanadventures). Topics explored ranged from the Grey whale migration of the west coast of the Americas to the magical coral spawning of the Caribbean to diving with squadrons of goliath groupers to the ghost ships of the Great Lakes. Additional hours cover exotic places such as the Amazon, Samoa, Christmas Island, Papua New Guinea, the Arctic and many other wonders of nature. The most recent expeditions covering the topics of Belugas, Orcas and man started airing on PBS in April of 2009. Fabien keeps his personal life similarly involved in projects like his new initiative to actively involve the public in undersea restoration initiatives coupled with government protection of the restored areas. Deeply concerned about the well-being of future generations, he is on the board of the New York Harbor School (http://www.newyorkharborschool.org/) where he volunteers his time to empower youth about the water world. Being part of the Water Innovation Alliance (http://www.waterinnovations.org/), Fabien brings attention about water issues to business executives in order for them to make better, more informed decisions. Believing that the visual medium are the best way to reach and entrance the masses he lends his support as a board member to the Blue Ocean Film Festival (http://www.blueoceanfilmfestival.org/). Fabien also partners with outside initiatives such as Save Bimini (http://www.savebimini.org) in an effort to impassion people into changing the tide of current events that threaten to blindly destroy the environmental wealth of our future generations. His most recent, and perhaps most ambitious, endeavor is creating a new foundation committed to educating the public on the alarming need to restore our marine habitats. The Plant-a-Fish Initiative will spearhead public education programs as well as guiding large environmentally sensitive corporations with a genuine commitment to making the world a healthier place for mankind. An active writer, he is currently working on a children's book trilogy. Fabien has been seen on network television, the Oprah Winfrey Show, and as a regular guest/contributor to NBC's Today Show. Additionally, he is a sought after speaker at a variety of foreign and domestic environmental and water conferences.
Sylvia Alice Earle is an American oceanographer. She was chief scientist for the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration from 1990-1992. She is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, sometimes called "Her Deepness" or "The Sturgeon General".
Earle received a B.S. degree from Florida State University (1955), M.S. (1956) and PhD. from Duke University (1966). She was Curator of Phycology at the California Academy of Sciences (1979-1986) and a Research Associate at the University of California, Berkeley (1969-1981), Radcliff Institute Scholar (1967-1969) and Research Fellow or Associate at Harvard University (1967-1981). She led the first team of women aquanauts during the Tektite Project in 1970.
Earle has led more than 60 expeditions worldwide involving in excess of 7000 hours underwater in connection with her research. From 1998 to 2002 she led the Sustainable Seas Expeditions, a five year program to study the United States National Marine Sanctuary sponsored by the National Geographic Society and funded by the Goldman Foundation. An expert on the impact of oil spills, she was called upon to lead several research trips during the Gulf War and following the spills of the ships, Exxon Valdez and Mega Borg.
She is the author of more than 125 publications concerning marine science and technology including the books Exploring the Deep Frontier, Sea Change (1995), Wild Ocean: America's Parks Under the Sea (1999) and The Atlas of the Ocean (2001), she has participated in numerous television productions and given scientific, technical, and general interest lectures in more than 60 countries.
Ira Flatow: Radio and television journalist and host of National Public Radio's Science Friday.
Veteran National Public Radio (NPR) science correspondent and award-winning TV journalist Ira Flatow is the host of Talk Of The Nation: Science Friday. He anchors the show each Friday, bringing radio and Internet listeners world wide a lively, informative discussion on science, technology, health, space and the environment. Ira is also founder and president of The Science Friday Initiative, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit company dedicated to supporting the Science Friday show, as well as engaging and creating scientific discussion among adolescents and young adults. Flatow's interest in things scientific began in boyhood - he almost burned down his mother's bathroom trying to recreate a biology class experiment. "I was the proverbial kid who spent hours in the basement experimenting with electronic gizmos, and then entering them in high school science fairs," Flatow says. Mixing his passion for science with a tendency toward being "a bit of a ham," Flatow describes his work as the challenge "to make science and technology a topic for discussion around the dinner table."
He has shared that enthusiasm with public radio listeners for more than 35 years. As a reporter and then News Director at WBFO-FM/Buffalo, New York, Flatow began reporting at the station while studying for his engineering degree at State University of New York in Buffalo. As NPR's science correspondent from 1971 to 1986, Flatow found himself reporting from the Kennedy Space Center, Three Mile Island, Antarctica and the South Pole. In one memorable NPR report, Flatow took former All Things Considered host Susan Stamberg into a closet to crunch Wint-O-Green Lifesavers, proving they spark in the dark.
His most recent book is entitled Present At The Future : From Evolution to Nanotechnology, Candid and Controversial Conversations on Science And Nature. It follows on the heels of They All Laughed ... From Light Bulbs to Lasers: The Fascinating Stories Behind the Great Inventions That Have Changed Our Lives.
On television, Flatow has discussed the latest cutting edge science stories on a variety of programs, including the new digital Cablevision program Maximum Science . He is also host of the four-part PBS series Big Ideas produced by WNET in New York. His numerous TV credits include six years as host and writer for the Emmy-award-winning Newton's Apple on PBS, science reporter for CBS This Morning, Westinghouse, and cable's CNBC. He wrote, produced and hosted Transistorized!, an hour-long documentary about the history of the transistor, which aired on PBS. He has talked science on many TV talk shows including Merv Griffin, Today, Charlie Rose, and Oprah. He is currently exploring new and better ways of bringing science news to radio, TV and the Internet.
On the Internet, Flatow has hosted numerous science related Web Casts for Discovery Online and the American Museum of Natural History in New York. His Science Friday Kids' Connection web pages won the award for one of the top 500 web sites in the country given out by Home PC Magazine. His Podcasts are among the most listened to on the Internet, frequently in the top-ten of all downloads on the iTunes web site.
In print, Ira has authored articles for various magazines ranging from Woman's Day to ESPN Magazine to American Lawyer. His commentary has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, and Current newspapers.
Public speaking and moderating discussions are a regular part of his schedule. As a host, he has "emceed" many public events, including the 100th Anniversary Celebration of the Science Museum of Minnesota (2007). He has spoken at Rockefeller University, the World Economic Forum, Sun Microsystems, Hewlett Packard, Calvin Academy, Cal Tech, MIT, Harvard, University of Wisconsin, OSHU, National Inventor's Hall of Fame and the Kentucky Author Forum. In 2004, Ira was resident scholar at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.
His recent honors include: National Science Teachers Association Faraday Science Communicator Award (2007), National Science Board Public Service Award (2005), World Economic Forum Media Fellowshipo (2005), Elizabeth Wood Writing (2002), AAAS Journalism award (2000), Brady Washburn Award (2000), the Carl Sagan Award (1999).
J. Charles Fox
Fox serves as the Program Director of Oceans Five, an international funders collaborative dedicated to ocean conservation. He served formerly in several senior government positions at federal and state levels, including the Secretary of Natural Resources in Maryland and the Assistant Administrator for Water at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Fox previously directed the international marine conservation programs for the Pew Charitable Trusts and worked with several nonprofit organizations including the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Friends of the Earth, American Rivers, and the Environmental Policy Institute. He lives in Annapolis and enjoys sailing.
Oceanographer Sylvia Earle stresses the urgency of protecting the ocean’s natural resources. Earle highlights the neglect of the exclusive economic zone, 200 miles off the coast. "We know that our lives depend on the natural systems. Yet, we act as we did 50 years ago or 500 or 5,000 years ago, as if nature is infinite in its capacity to accept what we take,” says Earle.
Scientific discipline concerned with all aspects of the world's oceans and seas, including their physical and chemical properties, origin and geology, and life forms. Research entails sampling seawater and marine life, remote sensing of oceanic processes with aircraft and satellites, and exploration of the seafloor. Oceanography aids in predicting weather and climate, in exploitation of the Earth's resources, and in understanding the effects of pollutants. See alsomarine geology.