Today the Ranger’s 2015 campaign in the Mediterranean Sea begins. It is a two-month campaign mapping the underwater world surrounding Malta in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea. I’m sure there will be unexpected discoveries; amazing images and videos of marine life; laughter with the crew; and magical encounters with cetaceans at sea. However, this is not about the experiences. It’s an important research project and today is its first day. It’s the day when you realize you can make a difference. I’m going to be contributing to the exploration of a previously unknown world; a world inextricably connected to humanity despite being largely unseen and undocumented.
The excitement is building. It’s l0:00 and we have just arrived at the submerged Maltese Bank, 23nm north of the Island of Malta. The sea is calm, the sky is blue and the seagulls are circling inquisitively as we manoeuvre the Ranger into position. So, here we are, ready to start. 10:45, the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) is in the water: the research has now officially begun. I’m at the stern of the boat watching the ROV disappearing below 200m and think to myself: I’m at the forefront of a new chapter in the understanding of the Mediterranean Sea.
© OCEANA / Carlos Minguell