The Human Ocean Campaign

130 days, an expedition and documentary to discover the health of the East African coral reef system, the lifeline to millions of people.

Short Summary

The East African Marine Transect (EAMT) aims to action a globally important marine-based scientific expedition to explore the relationship between humanity, our marine environment, science, technology and how new knowledge is communicated and shared in an open-sourced manner. The key driver is imagery, and the power of film. 


Inspired by Caine Delacy TEDxSeaPoint presentation:  www.tedxseapoint.com (where ideas can change the world!)

Team Introductions:


Mike Markovina: Mike has a Masters degree in Ichthyology and Fisheries Science. After working on leatherback turtle conservation and fisheries management projects for the Mayumba Marine Park in southern Gabon for the Wildlife Conservation Society, he and Linda began a two-year expedition using photography and film to illuminate the positive uses of marine resources they found across Africa, Asia and Europe (42 countries in 24 months). Passionate about the oceans, Mike currently works extensively in East Africa on illegal fisheries (Monitoring, Control and Surveillance), from the shores of Lake Victoria to the dynamited reefs of Tanzania. With years of diving experience the world over, and driven by a deep passion for the marine environment, Mike aims to live a life of respect, appreciation and continued exploration, sharing with the world ideas, innovation new technologies.

Justin Beswick: A high impact entrepreneur with a BSc in Biotechnology and honours in Financial Analysis & Portfolio Management.His primary passion is where the leverage points in a system can be found, so that he can intervene to bring about the greatest positive change. He also has an undying passion for entrepreneurship and enabling others – with the greater goal of facilitating the development of entrepreneurship, through culture and mindset changes. In this regard, Justin has successfully launched organizations/companies that demonstrate and facilitate these efforts and has been selected as a Brightest Young Mind and World Economic Forum Global Shaper.

Rhett Bennett: Having grown up at the coast, spending his childhood fishing, snorkelling, SCUBA diving and surfing, Rhett developed a passion for fish and the marine environment, which eventually led to a PhD in Ichthyology and Fisheries Science. Rhett has worked in a number of areas, including fishing hotspots, marine protected areas (MPAs) and estuaries, along South Africa’s coastline, focussing on fish movement patterns, the benefits  of MPAs, the ecological effects of fishing on fish communities, as well as the design of long-term monitoring programmes for assessing reef fish communities. 

Tanith Grant: Tanith grew up in the land-locked wildlife-rich areas of Zimbabwe, and had to go far afield on adventurous family holidays (aka “selection course”) in  order to visit the ocean. These holidays involved expeditions along the pristine Mozambican coastline, which left its vivid imprint of sights and smells and the ocean’s warm caress lingering for years to come. With these influences, Tanith was only interested in working towards environmental conservation and went on to complete a degree in Geography and Environmental Science. Not quite satisfied in that field, she continued with an MSc in Zoology, investigating leopard population and movement patterns in Zimbabwe. Tanith’s education, hobbies and  passion are well integrated and have resulted in a well-rounded background in GIS, 4x4ing, telemetry, navigation, SCUBA diving, travel, fishing, conservation, photography and soon-to-be sailing!

Linda Markovina: Linda is a passionate traveller and conservationist. She spent two years as the better-looking half of the Marine Resource Expedition, which travelled the globe filming and photographing people making a change in marine conservation. After successfully completing the expedition in 2010 she is now co-director of Moving Sushi along with Mike Markovina. Together, the two are dedicated to bringing about inspiration and change in marine and ocean conservation through science, film, photography and open-access information.  Linda is a freelance writer, environmental journalist and photographer who has been published in various magazines in South Africa and internationally, and currently blogs for The Africa Report and Getaway Magazine on marine conservation issues as well as being a TIES ecotourism ambassador.  

Caine Delacy: With a PhD in marine ecology, a dive master qualification and a healthy dose of adventure, Caine has been travelling the world working on coral and temperate reef ecosystems. He is interested in the patterns and processes influencing reef ecosystems at large scales – such as along entire continental margins. He is also interested in and has worked on many marine protected areas (MPAs) and considers these one of the key components for the future health of reef ecosystems. He has played a role in both the design and implementation of monitoring programs for MPAs across the world. Caine also recognises the importance of engaging the volunteer community to play an important role in science and conservation, and that volunteers can contribute to research surveying and data processing. When not underwater or taking photos, you will find Caine rock climbing, surfing, snowboarding or trying to get lost in the mountains

Campaign description:

The EAMT  is  a  cross‐border,  multifaceted  research  expedition, linking  science,  cutting  edge  technology  and  social  media to  create  awareness  and  provide meaningful,  useful  and accessible  data to inspire solutions strategies  and  positive  and  constructive  outcomes for  East  African  coral  reef  fishes. Using sterio-imagery,  for  four  months  EAMT  will dive  and  film from South  Africa to  Kenya to  provide  the FIRST  baseline  assessment of  the  fish  fauna  spanning  the  length  of  the  East  African  ecosystem. This expedition represents the first of its kind, and will influence greatly future research initiatives on coral reef systems worldwide. We leave on the 12th of November 2012.


While it is important to conduct research within the scientific realm, the real value is in communicating the knowledge to a global audience. It is possible the the coral reefs of East Africa, the lifeline to millions of people, is dying, which will exacerbate social and food security issues in the region. Through the EAMT expedition we will be able to film and understand just how far down the line we are. But the only way to communicate this globally is through emotive, real documentaries and powerful images, this is where we need you help!

What We Need & What You Get

Our key focus is to raise the necessary funds to produce a hard hitting, yet inspiring documentary detailing the expedition process, our findings and discoveries. To do this we require:

  • US$ 40 000 to cover documentary post production expences. 
  • All funds raised through this campaign weather it is more or less than that asked for will go to the production of the documentary - it is criticle in desiminating the right message. 

By contributing to production of our documentary, we will in turn offer rewards that showcase the level of your support, may it be you joining the expedition, or, we will create a viral video clip dressed up in fish costumes on a busy Cape Town beach thanking you for your support. We are a dynamic team with an imagination, so we look forward to creating fun, personal, meaningful and authentic rewards. 

The Impact

Our first expedition where we drove a 4x4 from Cape Town to Japan and back to highlight the positive contributions of change makers really impacting marine conservation initiatives (Moving Sushi) has finally culminated in the post production of the documentary. The funding drive to make that happen prolonged the message getting to the world - your contribution in facilitating post production of EAMT expedition documentary will bring the message to the world immediately - to us this is invaluable. 

Other Ways You Can Help

Help us drive the expedition by blogging, tweeting, sharing our website, following the teams progress underwater and building a relationship with the expedition. We are driven to get out there and change the world - and we are interested for you to be part of that change. If you think of crazy, interesting and strategic ideas that we could adopt in creating awareness towards our message on a global scale, let us know, we are willing to take a challenge!!

Team on This Campaign: