5 April 2011
Maersk Line joins the Virgin Oceanic Expedition (VOE) designated to explore the deepest points of the world’s five oceans.
Today, April 5, 2011, the Virgin Oceanic Expedition Team confirmed Danish shipping company » Maersk Line as the official shipping and research partner of the Virgin Oceanic ‘Five Dives’ expedition. The initiative is headed by Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, and the American explorer and sailor Chris Welsh.
The five dives to the bottom of the world’s oceans will be carried out by Sir Richard Branson and Chris Welsh who will each man an innovative new-built deep dive submarine, subject to receipt of all required regulatory approvals. The deepest dive will take the adventurer 36,000 feet down to the bottom of the Mariana Trench after which he will be able to ‘fly’ six miles across the Trench floor. The dives will run over a period of two years, after which the submarine will be donated to a U.S. museum.
|DEEP CHALLENGER dives
Dive 1 - Mariana Trench
Dive 2 – Diamantina Trench
Dive 3 – Puerto Rico Trench
Dive 4 – Molloy Deep
Dive 5 – South Sandwich Trench
“The Five Dives expedition is a unique and exciting opportunity for Maersk Line to support scientific ocean research. It is well aligned with our aspirations on improving the understanding of the state of the world’s oceans” says Eskild Lund Sorensen, Head of Marine Stewardship, Maersk Line.
Maersk Line has contributed to the funding of the scientific equipment used in the expedition to collect and analyse samples from the submarine dives and catamaran voyages. Maersk Line’s sponsorship may also include the transportation of the submarine and other equipment for the expedition, subject to receipt of all required regulatory approvals.
The expedition embarks from San Diego in the summer with the first dive taking place off the coast of Guam in the Mariana Trench. Over the course of approximately two years the team will uncover the deepest trenches of the Indian, Atlantic, Arctic and Southern Oceans.
“We are delighted to receive the support of Maersk Line in this amazing adventure to go where literally no man has gone before. Maersk Line is an important partner in this project and a sustainability ally demonstrating true commitment to protecting the marine environment” says Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group.
About Maersk Line
Maersk Line is a division of the A.P. Moller-Maersk Group and is the leading liner shipping company in the world serving customers all over the globe. Our operations comprise more than 500 vessels, 17,000 employees, and 2 million containers spread across 135 countries. At any given time, our ships will be carrying goods worth three percent of the world's total GDP.
Maersk Line was the first ocean carrier to have its fleet carbon emissions independently verified.
For more information please visit » maerskline.com or download the » 2010 Maersk Line Sustainability Progress Report
About Virgin Oceanic
Virgin Oceanic was formed by the Virgin Group to act as a sponsor of and partner on the Five Dives Expedition. Chris Welsh, though his company Deep Sub LLC, owns and will operate the submarine. The expedition will require various regulatory approvals, including export licenses, which Deep Sub LLC will obtain.
Sustainability Communication Manager
Mary Ann Kotlarich
Director, External Communications
Tel: +1 (704) 571-4840
For photos and further information please see » http://www.virginoceanic.com