Hubert Burda Media

Under the Sea

La Mer teams up with National Geographic’s Dr Sylvia Earle for World Oceans Day

Crème de la Mer, the cream of the sea.
The infinite value of the living ocean was already recognised by Dr Max Huber when he developed this iconic product over 40 years ago, pioneering the use of sea kelp to heal the skin.
Today, Huber’s legacy continues through La Mer’s committed efforts to preserve the natural habitat of this special plant through partnerships with international ocean advocacy organisations such as Oceana, to which the brand has donated over US$1 million dollars to date.
This year, in a bid to rally action for ocean conservation, the brand has also teamed up with the National Geographic Society to produce a short film in conjunction with World Oceans Day 2013 (June 8). A breathtaking work, the film offers a glimpse into the blue abyss through the eyes of the society’s Explorer-in-Residence Dr Sylvia Earle.
One of the most influential oceanographers of our time and named “Her Deepness” by the New York Times, Earle has led more than 100 marine expeditions, logged an impressive 7,000 hours underwater, and in July 2012 set a record for solo diving in 1,000 metres depth.
When and how did you first discover your love for the ocean?
The ocean got my attention when, as a 3 year old, I was knocked over by a wave on the New Jersey shore. But what held my attention and kept me engaged ever since? The amazing creatures who live in the sea that occur nowhere on the land or in freshwater — Horseshoe crabs! Sea stars! Jellyfish! Seaweed! A rich cross section of past, present and future life on Earth!
How does the ocean inspire you?
As a child, I loved exploring the ocean because I knew that no matter how often I looked, I would always find new and unexpected discoveries. That is true, today, as well. But now the importance of the ocean as the cornerstone of Earth’s life support system inspires great respect and a sense of urgency about taking care of it as if our lives depend on it — because they do.
What is your favourite part of being an oceanographer?
The best part of being an oceanographer is the joy of being around, on and especially under the ocean, of exploring, of doing whatever it takes to better understand the nature of the living world and securing an enduring place for humankind within the systems that keep us alive. Getting wet is exhilarating, but making a difference is the ultimate goal.
What do you see in the future of ocean conservation?
There is time, but not a lot, to take actions to stabilise and reverse damage to the ocean, and it is encouraging to see growing interest by public and private institutions in exploring and caring for the blue part of the planet. Nations are awakening to the value of their Exclusive Economic Zones, not just for exploitation but as assets that must be safeguarded. The high seas, heretofore largely neglected, have become a high priority for protection.
What impact do you think World Oceans Day has on ocean conservation?
The impact will be whatever we make of it. The 2013 Oceans Day can be a critical turning point, a serious opportunity to create an awareness that the ocean is vital for everything we care about, that a troubled ocean means trouble for us, and that this is the time, as never before — and maybe, as never again — to secure an enduring future for ourselves on this mostly blue planet.
If you had to choose one moment in your life as defining your career, what would it be?
It was probably that wave that knocked me down when I was three years old.
To raise awareness for World Oceans Day, Crème de la Mer will be available in a limited edition design from May through June 2013.