Environment featured

Reality Roundtable #04: “Titanic Oceans”: Daniel Pauly, Antonio Turiel, Peter Ward

September 12, 2023

(Conversation Recorded on July 31st, 2023)

Show Summary

On this Reality Roundtable, marine biologist Daniel Pauly, ocean physicist Antonio Turiel, and paleobiologist Peter Ward join Nate to discuss the numerous oft-overlooked threats to the Earth’s great oceans. From overfishing and plastic pollution to climate change and acidification, the human system is assaulting one of the most important regulators for our climate and the largest habitat for life – anywhere. What early indicators of climate impacts are these great bodies of water showing us as we hit record heat across the oceans, fish populations dwindle, and major currents slow? Why are concerns for the ocean so overlooked and what further research needs to be done? Will we learn to value these high seas for all the priceless value they give us, or will we take them for granted until it’s too late?

About Daniel Pauly

Dr. Daniel Pauly is a Killam Professor at the University of British Columbia. In 1999, Daniel Pauly founded, and since leads, a large research project, Sea Around Us, devoted to identifying and quantifying global fisheries trends. Daniel Pauly is also co-founder of FishBase.org, the online encyclopedia of more than 30,000 fish species, and he has helped develop the widely-used Ecopath modeling software. He is the author or co-author of over 1000 scientific and other articles, books and book chapters on fish, fisheries and related topics.

About Antonio Turiel

Antonio Turiel Martínez is a scientist and activist with a degree in Physics and Mathematics and a PhD in Theoretical Physics from the Autonomous University of Madrid. He works as a senior scientist at the Institute of Marine Sciences of the CSIC specializing in remote sensing, turbulence, sea surface salinity, water cycle, sea surface temperature, sea surface currents, and chlorophyll concentration. He has written more than 80 scientific articles, but he is better known as an online activist and editor of The Oil Crash blog, where he addresses sensitive issues about the depletion of conventional fossil fuel resources, such as the peak of oil and its possible implications on a world scale.

About Peter Ward

Peter Ward is a Professor of Biology and Earth and Space Sciences at the University of Washington. He is author of over a dozen books on Earth’s natural history including On Methuselah’s Trail: Living Fossils and the Great Extinctions; Under a Green Sky; and The Medea Hypothesis, 2009, (listed by the New York Times as one of the “100 most important ideas of 2009”). Ward gave a TED talk in 2008 about mass extinctions.

Watch on YouTube


Show Notes & Links to Learn More:

00:45 – Daniel Pauly works, info, and TGS episode, Antonio Turiel works, info, and TGS episode, and Peter Ward works, info, and TGS episode

04:28 – Humans and the decimation of megafauna

07:01 – Decline of fish populations

07:17 – Industrial fishery subsidies

09:13 – Global Warming effects on fish populations

10:15 – Fish sensitivity to temperature and oxygen levels

12:07 – Sea surface temperature in summer 2023 is 1 degree above typical on average

12:24 – The Mediterranean is 3 degrees above average and the North Atlantic is 1.4 degrees above average

13:31 – Disruption of the AMOC and implications

14:30 – Increase in severe weather in Europe

15:30 – IPCC Climate models

17:40 – Function of the AMOC

18:15 – PETM

18:40 – Hydrogen sulfide

19:30 – 100 degree water in the florida keys

24:01 – Fish moving polewards

29:24 – Rachel CarsonThe Sea Around Us

30:49 – La Niña and El Niño

31:33 – Canfield Ocean

34:27 – Extreme temperatures in the US Northwest

36:07 – Deaths from 2021 heatwave in Vancouver

36:45 – Record temps all over the world

39:14 – Fewer winds in the north atlantic

40:50 – Extra climatic heat accumulating in the ocean

42:38 – Increase in droughts, droughts in Europe

45:30 – Processes of ocean mixing

48:19 – Don Canfield

48:40 – Ice cores in climate science

51:36 – Uniformitarianism

52:55 – Polar Vortex

53:58 – Dead Zones

56:07 – DJ White + TGS Episode

1:01:38 – Aquacultures contributing to overfishing

1:03:52 – Killer whale attacks

1;05:10 – Diversity vs abundance

1:05:50 – Abundance rises during mass extinctions

1:05:53 – Windjana Gorge

1;06:58 – Cephalopods

1:07:04 – Global proliferation of cephalopods: Current Biology

1:07:34 – Save the Nautilus

1:08:17 – Don’t Look Up

1:10;25 – Exclusive Economic Zones

1:12:02 – Healthy fish populations would have a positive effect on climate change

1:12:48 – Sea creatures at the bottom who eat carcasses and remove carbon

1:13:37 – The Graduate “Plastics”

1:13:56 – Marine plastic pollution

1:15:58 – Microplastics in clothes

1:18:15 – Ocean geoengineering (green olivine sand)

1:28:54 – How much CO2 has been released because of the Russia/Ukraine War

Nate Hagens

Nate Hagens

Nate Hagens is the Director of The Institute for the Study of Energy & Our Future (ISEOF) an organization focused on educating and preparing society for the coming cultural transition. Allied with leading ecologists, energy experts, politicians and systems thinkers ISEOF assembles road-maps and off-ramps for how human societies can adapt to lower throughput lifestyles. Nate holds a Masters Degree in Finance with Honors from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in Natural Resources from the University of Vermont. He teaches an Honors course, Reality 101, at the University of Minnesota.

Tags: ocean health