What is Dive Against Debris is probably your first question?
Very simply a Dive Against Debris is using your skills as a diver to help remove items that don’t belong there from our ocean, however it is actually much much more than that!
Dive Against Debris is the flagship citizen science program from Project AWARE, empowering divers worldwide to collect debris from our oceans and giving them a platform to report this so it can be monitored, reporting on types of debris as well as quantities. This information can then be used not only to spread awareness, but to understand more about what can be done to help.
Project Aware was started as an environmental ethical project by PADI in 1989, progressing to becoming a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in 1992 with a vision, ‘A Return to a Clean, Healthy Ocean’, and a mission ‘Project Aware connects the passion for ocean adventure with the purpose of marine conservation’. They still maintain a strong partnership with PADI.
They develop new actions each year under their Clean Ocean and Healthy Ocean programs to support and address the greatest threats to the ocean and we, at Waiheke Dive and Snorkel are proud to support them and be a part of this action.
Although Project Aware has many amazing programs benefiting our ocean we are going to focus on the Dive Against Debris movement, but if you would love to find out more their website provides loads of fab information.
As a 100% Aware partner of Project Aware, here at Waiheke Dive and Snorkel we love to support the protection of our oceans, after all, we all dive because we have a love for the ocean right?
So what does this mean for you?
As a 100% Aware dive shop, all of our students receive an extra special certification card from PADI for any course undertaken, with an awesome picture of one of the marine animals we love selected each year, this also means we are making a donation to Project Aware on your behalf for each certification at absolutely no extra cost to you! We also carry out regular clean up dives and log what has been collected.
Dive Against Debris
The Dive Against Debris program was launched in 2011, and to date, over 1.5 million pieces of trash have been removed from our oceans, by more than 50,000 divers in 114 countries around the world!
As reported in December 2018, the top trash item removed from our ocean was plastic fishing line at a whopping almost 15%, something that anyone who has dived in Waiheke knows is the most common thing we find here.
All Dive’s Against Debris collect data and report back to Project Aware who collate the information, this can make for some fascinating/shocking reading, if you’re interested in learning more about this visit https://www.projectaware.org/diveagainstdebrismap - you can even pinpoint areas to look at including what we have done here on Waiheke!
Here at Waiheke Dive we have adopted our very own dive site through the Dive Against Debris program. This means we have committed to carrying out regular clean up dives at the same location to help with ongoing monitoring and information collection to support the programs that Project Aware work in collaboration with.
Our dive site on Waiheke Island is Enclosure Bay, where I’m sure many of you have seen our team and fabulous guests gearing up and hopping into the water, or possibly even joined us on a fun dive or clean up dive.
What we do
At Waiheke Dive we carry out monthly clean up dives where we take out certified divers to collect as much trash from the ocean as we can. As instructors here, we love to get involved and see the mesh bags coming out of the ocean full of rubbish knowing that we are helping to do our bit.
We feel so strongly about this we offer some awesome deals to get as many people as possible involved. We charge only $10 to participate in our Clean Up Dive, of which 100% is donated to Project Aware, we also offer a 50% discount to any gear hire for those of you who don’t have your own. To check out upcoming dates and join us visit our website here.
Not a certified diver but still want to get involved? You can either start your journey to become a PADI Certified Diver or, we always welcome snorkelers to join us, or even if you don’t want to get wet come along and collect any trash on the beaches, it will only end up in the ocean anyway. As far as we are concerned, when it comes to keeping our ocean (and our beautiful island) clean, the more the merrier!
Make every dive a clean up dive
Although we carry out monthly dives specifically for going out hunting for trash to collect, every dive can be a clean up dive! You will often see our team returning from a dive with pockets or hands full of items that don’t belong in the ocean, we just can’t swim past and ignore it! You can join us in picking up any bits of rubbish you see on your dive, just remember safety first, make sure you’re not getting yourself caught up in any fishing wire, why not try keeping a debris bag with you on your dives?
Want to take it even further and collect more bragging rights? PADI offers a Dive Against Debris Specialty certification, which you can complete with us here on the island! Get in touch for more information or follow us on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest events and pictures.
Hope to see you all soon for one of our clean up dives.
Lucy & The Waiheke Dive Team