Rays of Guanabara Bay, a web series produced through a partnership between OceanPact and the Urban Sea Institute, was launched on Saturday, June 11, at the Museum of Tomorrow in Rio de Janeiro. The launch was part of the 2030 Environmental Dialogues Event and it was attended by Ricardo Gomes, a marine biologist and the director of the Urban Sea Institute, who was responsible for the documentary; and Nina Gomes, a five-year-old junior ambassador for OceanPact.
According to Ricardo Gomes, Rays of Guanabara Bay shows the mysteries and riches of Guanabara Bay and seeks to portray the main threats and solutions for the preservation of rays and all of Rio’s marine biodiversity. The documentary was conceived after a dive off Praça XV, a square on the edge of downtown Rio, where the biologist found a large agglomeration of rays.
“Guanabara Bay is still a living place and one worth fighting for. We need to work on changing residents’ perceptions and restoring their sense of belonging. People are now beginning to look at these waters differently and understand that the bay represents the ocean and all the harm we do to it means global harm,” Gomes said.
Through the web series, the Urban Sea Institute intends to raise awareness and sensitize the population about the wealth of underwater species inhabiting the waters that bathe the city and show that a clean and preserved bay can yield a high economic return.
“We have huge potential, which is still unknown, and this web series presents the value of our waters. As oceanographer and environmentalist Sylvia Earle said, without blue, we don’t have green, and nothing survives on the planet without healthy oceans,” he added.
After the film was shown, the documentary filmmaker recounted his expedition’s experience, revealed behind-the-scenes details and discussed the unexplored economic potential of Guanabara Bay.
The launch event for the four-part web series was presided over by two non-governmental organizations, the Aegea Institute and Waters of Rio. The event was also part of the agenda of the Museum of Tomorrow’s Environment Week.