When World Champion Freediver, Yasemin Dalkilic dove on the Aquarius habitat late last summer, it’s future looked less than bright. But since the video was produced, Aquarius has been able to secure some funding – enough to keep it treading water, at least for now.
Last year the US government cut funding for Aquarius from $5 million to zero. The only underwater habitat in the world performing scientific research, Aquarius has been on Conch Reef off Key Largo Florida for 22 years. And now she is a magnificent living reef in her own right. At only sixty feet deep, the dive is not a stretch for the 9 time World Champion Freediver, Yasmine. Beginning with a charming little girl’s fantasy of living underwater, Yasemin takes us on a tour of Aquarius.
Thankfully things are better for Aquarius than when this video was produced, but we still have a way to go to secure Aquarius’ ultimate survival. Florida International University has stepped up to the plate with enough funds to maintain the base for 2013, although not enough to return to doing scientific work.