[Coral-List] NGOs, Corals and Dive Industry

Julian @ Reef Check julian at reefcheck.org.my
Wed Nov 20 19:21:29 EST 2013

Many dive centres promote themselves as "green" - just ask PADI about its
Project AWARE and other campaigns. The original GoEco operator status
promoted by PADI was one of many voluntary sign up schemes....problem is,
many of them, being voluntary, have no teeth. So there is no real way to
know whether a dive centre calling itself eco-friendly (whatever that means)
is indeed doing its best to reduce its impacts other than to go and dive
with them.

Then there's Green Fins, which was set up by UNEP a few years ago to promote
environmentally friendly guidelines (wiki it for more info). That at least
has an assessment procedure. And Blue Star in Florida. I am sure there are

But the main problem with them all is that they are usually voluntary, and
generally there is little or no monitoring of whether people that sign up
are actually abiding by the rules. I used to operate a dive centre in
Malaysia for 6 years, and we were one of the first PADI GoEco operators in
the country...but all we had to do was sign a piece of paper promising to do
a few "green" things...no checking, no follow up, no annual assessment, no
visit - nothing. So the whole thing became degraded after a short while as
dive operators signed up to use it simply as a promotional tool without
being interested in the goals.

I am in agreement with Steve on this issue. I think the industry could do
more, without spending a lot of money. As someone else pointed out, there is
a big constituency out there, with friends, family colleagues. Of all the
divers - and there are many, and the number is increasing - I am sure that
some could be convinced by a good, strong message, and then that message
could be multiplied. 

If Honda Motor company stops servicing its production lines, it will quickly
stop producing vehicles and go out of business. If American Airlines stops
servicing its airplanes, they will soon start falling out of the sky...and
they will go out of business. But who is servicing the world's coral reefs?
Shouldn't the diving industry have some responsibility, since it is their
main business asset? 


Julian Hyde
General Manager
Reef Check Malaysia Bhd
03 2161 5948
Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rcmalaysia


"The bottom line of the Millenium Assessment findings is that human actions
are depleting Earth's natural capital, putting such strain on the
environment that the ability of the planet's ecosystems to sustain future
generations can no longer be taken for granted."

-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
[mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Ed Blume
Sent: Thursday, 21 November, 2013 3:19 AM
To: Steve Mussman
Cc: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] NGOs, Corals and Dive Industry

Do any dive shops anyplace in the world promote themselves as "green?"  The
travel industry has green travel certifications, but I've never seen
anything like that for the dive industry.

Ed Blume
Energy Consulting Network <http://energyconsultingnetwork.com>

On Wed, Nov 20, 2013 at 9:56 AM, Steve Mussman <sealab at earthlink.net> wrote:

>    This pertinent question was raised off-list: Can't the diving industry
>    acknowledge the problems and speak out
>    on the need for action without someone requiring them to pony up money?
>    That was exactly the point I was attempting to make. What we are 
> looking for
>    from industry leaders is not funding, but acknowledgement, 
> leadership and
>    guidance. In fact, there suddenly seems to be a groundswell of 
> support for
>    proactive engagement derived from divers and business leaders who have
>    studied  and understand the issues at hand. At least those who are not
>    predisposed  to reject  scientifically-based findings because they may
>    contradict  some  core beliefs. The way that the diving industry works
>    provides mystifying powers of persuasion to certification agencies 
> (and DEMA
>    directors). The average diver follows their edicts with something 
> akin to
>    religious fervor. If divers can simply be encouraged to follow the 
> science
>    rather than rhetoric designed specifically to discredit conclusions 
> based on
>    methodical   studies,   we   might   be   able  to  make  progress  by
>    implementing actions designed to mitigate the blighting impacts 
> currently
>    anticipated.
>    Steve
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
Coral-List mailing list
Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov

No virus found in this message.
Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 2013.0.3426 / Virus Database: 3629/6851 - Release Date: 11/20/13

More information about the Coral-List mailing list