The Last Ocean
SCR Peter Young, Richard Langston
EDS Jonno Woodford-Robinson, Richard Lord
MUS Dave Dobbyn, Plan 9
PROD CO Fisheye Films
According to the vox pops conducted by environmental filmmaker Peter Young, not too many of us can confidently say where in the world you would find the Ross Sea. If you don’t know, it’s a deep bay in the Southern Ocean off Antarctica. Very cold and very remote, it is one of the most pristine ecosystems on the planet, virtually untouched by humans.
Until, that is, 1996, when the wholesale depletion of fish stocks everywhere made trawling the Ross Sea more lucrative, not least because it is home to the Antarctic Toothfish, successfully marketed in recent times as “Chilean Sea Bass.”
Young, a professional cameraman whose work was featured in the BBC’s series Blue Planet, has captured breathtakingly beautiful images from a corner of the world few of us will see in person, as well as startling footage of the unlovely and mysterious toothfish. Interviews with scientists, environmental campaigners and politicians outline the historical accords protecting Antarctica from exploitation, and the debates about how the Ross Sea may or may not be covered by these agreements. In the meantime, though, short-term commercial imperatives threaten to decimate the toothfish and upset the food chain (penguins!) in this most precious of marine environments.