Today we focus on South Africa through a TED talk by Dyan deNapoli. TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues. Independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.
In this talk Dyan deNapoli highlights the role played by Port Elizabeth in the lives of three of penguins – Peter, Pamela and Percy who were rescued and cleaned after being oiled from the sinking of the ship Treasure. Penguins are an indicator species – i.e if they are dying then our oceans are dying.
On June 23rd, 2000, a ship named the Treasure sank off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa, spilling 1,300 tons of fuel, which polluted the habitats of nearly half the entire world population of African penguins. Now the ship sank between Robben Island to the south and Dassen Island to the north. And these are two of the penguins’ main breeding islands.When the Treasure sank in 2000, it was the height of the best breeding season scientists had ever recorded for the African penguin – which at the time, was listed as a threatened species. And soon, nearly 20,000 penguins were covered with this toxic oil. The local seabird rescue center, named SANCCOB, immediately launched a massive rescue operation – this soon would become the largest animal rescue ever undertaken.
EDITOR: Sadly this video is only one of two published on the TED site referencing Port Elizabeth (the other one is a talk about War Horse) – TEDxPortElizabeth is on a mission to change that and highlight the incredible talent that PE has to offer.