Jean-Michel Cousteau Heads Beach Clean-Up for Earth Day

Join the son of explorer the late Jaques at the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel to help clean up Salt Creek Beach on Saturday, April 21.

Cleaning up for Earth Day just got better at the 

Join Jean-Michel Cousteau, son of the late Jacques, for an Earth Day Celebration and beach clean-up Saturday, April 21. The beach clean up takes place from 10 a.m. to noon at Salt Creek Beach, located directly in front of the resort. Guests will gather on the resort’s Eco-Quest Game Board. 

He is an explorer, environmentalist, educator, and film producer. For more than four decades, he has dedicated himself and his vast experience to communicate to people of all nations and generations his love and concern for our water planet.

Laguna Niguel Patch talked with Cousteau about Earth Day: 

Laguna Niguel Patch: Why choose this local area for beach clean-up? 

Jean-Michel Cousteau: Marine debris is becoming one the biggest threats to our oceans and unfortunately 80 percent comes from the land, us; especially close to large urban areas. We need to stop using the ocean as a garbage and universal sewer. We need to be more proactive when it comes to reusing, reducing and recycling our waste. There is no waste in nature; there are many ways we can improve our lifestyle choices and throw less away. Then we would not have to be out here on earth day cleaning up our beaches. It starts with individuals.

Patch: What can participants expect during the clean-up? 

Cousteau: To make people aware of when they leave trash, where it ends up and the effect it has on the environment. By participating in the clean-up can they make these connections and prevent them from happening in the future – becoming ambassadors of the environment.

Patch: Why is this important you? 

Cousteau: Every person can make a difference. At times the trash in the ocean and on our beaches seems daunting. But by participating in the beach clean-up we can help connect the ocean to the existence of every human being. This is the only way for people to understand that the quality of each and every one of our lives depends on water, depends on the ocean. My father said, 'People protect what they love,' and so we want more people to fall in love with the ocean. And I say, 'Protect the ocean and you protect yourself.'"

Patch: What's it like to have a famous dad?

Cousteau: It is a privilege because when I was a child he was unknown to the public's eye; but this is when he introduced me the ocean. Children are like sponges. I remember very fondly our first family dives in the Mediterranean Sea.  His work has opened up doors very easily for me and I am grateful to carry on his philosophy and his message.

Patch: Why did you follow in his footsteps in terms of profession?

Cousteau: Because he made me fall in love with the marine environment, our life support system.

Patch: What does Earth Day mean to you?

Cousteau: Earth day to me is every day. I suggest people adopt that attitude. We need to build the belief that by caring for the environment, we care for each other.  Every day I wake up and think what a privilege it is to be alive on this planet, then think about what I can do to help those who don't yet feel that privilege. Earth day to me is every day. I suggest people adopt that attitude, use environmental stewardship as a way to reach out to others.

Since first being “thrown overboard” by his father at the age of seven with newly invented SCUBA gear on his back, he has been exploring the ocean realm. The son of ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau, Jean-Michel has investigated the world’s oceans aboard Calypso and Alcyone for much of his life. Honoring his heritage, he founded Ocean Futures Society in 1999 to carry on this pioneering work.

Contact the Ritz for more information about the clean-up at 949-240-2000. 

sharon whittaker April 20, 2012 at 01:42 AM
I used to love watching his dad on TV when he did specials.
charles linden April 20, 2012 at 01:44 AM
I remember those specials, he was great. They don't have shows like that anymore, I ight check this out on Saturday.
stuart branson April 20, 2012 at 02:29 AM
Ah yes the good old days before we had reality TV.


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