Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Scott Cassell - Undersea Voyager

The Undersea Voyager Project is one of our favorite submersible/conservation efforts right now. Recently the team was in Lake Tahoe making news and discoveries:

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A team of submariners that spent the month of May exploring Lake Tahoe and examined, among other things, evidence of an earthquake fault that may have ruptured thousands of years ago, is hoping the operation is just the beginning of their underwater explorations.

Scott Cassell, the sub's captain and founder of the non-profit Undersea Voyager Project, says his team has plans for a five-year mission to gather information and develop ideas to help restore endangered bodies of water around the world.

The goal, Cassell says, is to collect data and attract sufficient attention to prompt people and governments to halt pollution and overfishing and take other actions to protect threatened bodies of water.

A two-person submarine spent the past month cruising Lake Tahoe, examining earthquake faults, ancient submerged trees and beds of invading clams that threaten the lake.

"I think it's a very useful tool," said John Kleppe, a University of Nevada-Reno scientist who for years has researched submerged trees, some more than 3,000 years old, in Fallen Leaf Lake just west of Lake Tahoe. The trees, which grew when the lake level was lowered by lengthy drought, provide a "very good record of climate change," Kleppe said

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