For those of you who went to Cozumel, did you have a good trip? We can’t wait to hear all about it!! Today, I figured we might stay in Cozumel. Last week we discussed the Statues that are underwater near Cozumel Marine World. In fact, we focused on Jacques Cousteau. After that post went live, I got a message that they actually dove that site last Wednesday. How fun is that? Today, let’s look at another one of the statues. Today we’ll focus on Sylvia Earle.
Underwater Statues in Cozumel
Sylvia Earle was born August 30, 1935, in Gibbstown, New Jersey. As a young child, she and her family moved from New Jersey to Florida. Her parents were outdoors fanatics and ecstatic when she showed an early interest in outdoor exploration. That love led her to earn an associates degree from St. Petersburg Jr. College, a Bachelor of Science degree from Florida State University, a Master’s of Science and Doctorate from Duke University.
Earl was an American marine biologist, explorer, author, and lecturer. And since 1998 she has been involved with National Geographic. Earle achieved the first female chief scientist of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Time Magazine gave her the honor of the first Hero of the Planet in 1998.
In 1979 she set a record of a woman’s depth reaching 381 meters (1,250 feet) diving to the ocean floor near Oahu in a JIM Suit. A JIM Suit is an atmospheric diving suit. This suit aids in maintaining one-atmosphere pressure no matter what the conditions are of the exterior pressures. Because there are no mixed gases associated with this suit, there is no risk of decompression sickness or Nitrogen Narcosis. The JIM Suit was invented in 1969 by Mike Humphrey and Mike Barrow who were partners in an English firm, Underwater Marine Equipment Ltd. They had assistance from Joseph Salim Peress who named the suit after his chief diver.
Earle has been the first lady to hold numerous positions. She also led several research trips during the Persian Gulf War in 1991, determining the environmental damages caused by Iraq’s destruction of Kuwaiti oil wells. Because of her past experience, she was also consulted with during the Deepwater Horizon Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.
If you have access to Netflix, in August 2014 an exclusive documentary titled “Mission Blue” was released. This focuses on Earl’s life and career and her extensive campaigns to create a global network of marine protected areas.
Earle has authored over 150 publications.
With this information, it is no wonder she got a statue in this area with such great divers as Jacques Cousteau.