The Ocean and Our Explorers Need You

This week, comment to NatGeo on Facebook or Twitter with “#donate $10” and give your support to Pristine Seas.

The ocean covers more than 70 percent of the surface of Earth, but only 2 percent of that is officially protected. National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala is exploring the ocean’s most untouched areas in hopes of raising that number to 10 percent.

This requires him and his team to spend a lot of time at sea.

Now if you’re going to survive for long on or in the ocean you had better be prepared, and you had better have support.

In days of yore, you could apparently do fine by just praying for assistance from Poseidon:

In the 21st century though, the gods seem to be delegating support of seafaring expeditions to us mortals.

That’s where you come in.

Picture of diver with giant grouper
Pristine Seas expedition leader Paul Rose gets a closer look at a giant grouper at Assumption Island in the Seychelles. (Photo by Manu San Félix)

Since 2008, Enric and the rest of the National Geographic Society’s Pristine Seas team have explored some of the most remote areas of the ocean. They dive, count fish, and sample corals and algae. They take photos, send out remote cameras, and shoot films. Then they work the rest of the year to help get these places protected, ensuring that the ocean of the future will still be filled with sunken treasures far more valuable than gold.

With your support, we have helped to protect more than a million square miles (3 million square kilometers) of ocean territory so far.

This week, you can help us do even more. Just comment on Facebook or Twitter with “#donate $10,” fill out the one-time form, and give your support to Pristine Seas.

Fish are our friends. Let’s do them a favor.

Changing Planet


Meet the Author
Andrew Howley is a longtime contributor to the National Geographic blog, with a particular focus on archaeology and paleoanthropology generally, and ancient rock art in particular. In 2018 he became Communications Director at Adventure Scientists, founded by Nat Geo Explorer Gregg Treinish. Over 11 years at the National Geographic Society, Andrew worked in various ways to share the stories of NG explorers and grantees online. He also produced the Home Page of for several years, and helped manage the Society's Facebook page during its breakout year of 2010. He studied Anthropology with a focus on Archaeology from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. He has covered expeditions with NG Explorers-in-Residence Mike Fay, Enric Sala, and Lee Berger. His personal interests include painting, running, and reading about history. You can follow him on Twitter @anderhowl and on Instagram @andrewjhowley.