The Great Blue Hole of Belize is the world’s most massive sinkhole, boasting 300 meters in diameter and about 125 meters deep. In a recent expedition in that area, a team of scientists, including Virgin billionaire Richard Branson and Fabian Cousteau, the grandson of the famous underwater explorer Jacques Cousteau, unraveled some of the secrets of Belize’s Great Blue Hole.
The study was conducted in December 2018 with two submarines. The scientists managed to come up with new images and videos revealing the inside of the Great Blue Hole. Also, the researchers generated the first 3D map of the world’s most massive sinkhole.
“We did our complete 360 sonar map, and that map is now almost complete. It looks really cool, it’s this mesh-layered, sonar scan of the entire thousand-foot diameter hole,” stated Erika Bergman, the chief oceanographer and operations manager of the expedition, for CNN. She added that one of the most significant findings of the study was the discovery of never-before-seen stalactites.
Great Blue Hole Of Belize Revealed Some Of Its Secrets
“That was pretty exciting because they haven’t been mapped there before, they haven’t been discovered there before,” said Erika Bergman referring to the finding of those unique stalactites. “One of the crazy things about the hole is the hydrogen sulfide layer,” that descends at roughly 90 meters deep, Bergam added. “You lose all of that Caribbean sunlight, and it just turns completely black, and it’s totally anoxic down there with absolutely no life,” she continued.
But plastic waste reached even there, deep in the Great Blue Hole, even though, at the moment, it’s not threatening the ecosystem of the sinkhole. “There were basically two or three little pieces of plastic – and other than that, it was really, really clear,” Bergman said.
“It’s neat that there are spaces on our planet – and most of them in the oceans – that are exactly the way they were thousands of years ago and will remain exactly the way they are thousands of years in the future,” Erika Bergman added but not before saying that Great Blue Hole of Belize expedition was a challenging one.
With over seven years of experience in online journalism, Vadim is passionate about everything related to science and the environment. For us, he will thus cover climate, environment, and science news, among others.