a translucent squid against an inky black ocean backdrop

The Brilliant Abyss

by Helen Scales Author

The deep seas were, for millennia of human existence, something totally unknown to us. We were interested in the shallows and the coasts, and the open ocean was only something to be braved in order to make a crossing. Not until recently in the scale of human evolution have we developed the technology to examine the deepest parts of the ocean. Every year, new discoveries are made about these deepest depths, this lightless realm at the bottom of the world. Scientists are finding new species, new ecologies, and - dangerously for the denizens of this realm - new mineral deposits. In this passionately written book, author Helen Scales shows the reader the incredible characteristics of the abyss, and documents the threats facing it. Moreover, she shows us that the threat to this ecosystem is also a threat to the whole planet: vast quantities of carbon are stored in the seabed, and extractive mining operations risk releasing that carbon into our already overheating atmosphere. A must read for any budding oceanographer or marine biologist, and a fascinating look at a part of the world that we still know so little about.