At a time when James Cameron and Richard Branson are racing to be the first person in 50 years to dive to the deepest part of the ocean, the only U.S. deep submergence facility in the Pacific is losing funding.
The Hawai‘i Undersea Research Laboratory operates the Pisces IV and Pisces V submersibles, two of only eight human occupied vehicles that can go deeper than 1500 m in the world. In addition, HURL operates a robotic vehicle, a full ocean depth multibeam sonar mapping system, and supports a science and data center where these data are logged, archived, and made available to the wider scientific community and general public. Without this facility, we lose our ability for people to explore, discover and study the unique ecosystems, endangered habitats, life-sustaining marine processes, and other wonders of the deep ocean, live with their own eyes.
Please join us in asking Congress to appropriate money so that deep-sea research via manned submersibles and other combined assets can continue. NOAA as a whole does really good work; let us help it continue.