If you had the opportunity to travel to all seven continents, but all you could bring with you was one mug, one bottle of water, one fork, one spoon, and one knife, would you do it? Well, that’s exactly what Sarah Gauthier did.
Eco-Warrior Profile: Scuba Sarah Dives In All Seven Continents
In 2018, the French Canadian scuba diver had one major goal: dive in all seven continents. Her aim was to raise awareness for the conservation of oceans and show that low waste travel and living are possible. Growing up, Sarah remembered watching television and learning about the warming planet and its devastating effects on the environment. When she started scuba diving, she quickly began to actually see evidence of climate change in the form of ocean acidification. You might wonder, how can you really see the ocean acidify? Of course, you can’t see the PH levels of the water, but what Sarah did see as she dove in the same spot week after week was the coral getting whiter, building up stress as a result of the changing ocean temperatures. When Sarah was asked what compelled her to fight climate change, her answer was simply, “What I love the most, the ocean, is really in danger.”
She applies this concept when inspiring others to fight climate change as well. According to her, “In order to have the will to protect something, you first have to love it.” On her Instagram page, Sarah shares epic photos of the beauty of our oceans from around the world to encourage people to understand why we need to protect it. “By being positive and trying to be a role model, people are way more inclined to change. If someone sees you pick up trash on the beach, it will make them think. As a global village, we have to try to switch our mindset. Instead of telling people that they have to stop eating meat for example, we should give them more options for meatless food. Instead of making them feel guilty, we should show the solutions and how to change things. Eventually, people will start to take action with their own will.”
You might be surprised, however, that being an ocean activist wasn’t always Scuba Sarah’s mission in life. Her formal job was as a vet nurse. It was her love for animals that led her to protect the beautiful wildlife in our waters.
When asked which aspect of climate change isn’t talked about enough, Sarah said she believes that the problem lies more in how the crisis is received and understood. “We are quite disconnected from nature, which means we might not see the effects of our actions directly. For example, if you don’t have access to the ocean, you won’t realize that there is less and less fish or that the corals are getting whiter. Therefore you’ll continue to eat fish without thinking about it. If you aren’t interested in water and animals, there’s less chance that you’ll watch a documentary about ocean acidification. Our interests bring us to talk about different issues.”
Today Sarah travels with her boyfriend in the scuba diving van that she built, working together to film a documentary as she dives around Europe. To follow along on her underwater road trip, follow her on Instagram: @scuba.sarah.
To check out some more of The Oxygen Project’s inspiring eco-warriors around the world, click here.