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On Saturday the Bubbles Dive Centre team and local scuba divers completed a Dive Against Debris underwater survey in Marsalforn Bay. The event, which is part of an International Project AWARE campaign, involved trained divers not only removing underwater debris such as plastic bottles and fishing lines, but also the identification and documentation of everything collected underwater in a larger effort to prevent marine debris.
Director of Diving at Bubbles Dive Centre, David Hayler-Montague, led the dive and gave a very informative pre-dive briefing telling everyone about the importance of battling marine debris issues locally and internationally. Armed with mesh collecting bags the 8 strong team spent an hour collecting rubbish from the sea bed. The result was an estimated 25 kilos of a variety of marine debris including plastics, 20 metres of discarded rope, glass bottles, batteries, cigarette lighters, clothing, scrap metal, a boat throttle and what appeared to be the top of roof water tank.
“We had many spectators watching the divers in the shallow waters and curious passers-by looking at the debris as it was sorted out on the surface. If our Dive Against Debris has changed just one person’s attitude to throwing rubbish into the sea, then we will be delighted,” said David Hayler-Montague. “We believe most people really want to see an improvement in the marine environment and we’d like to thank the local businesses who sponsored the event by paying for air fills and mesh bags and providing cold drinks after the dive, as well as our volunteers who dived with us yesterday afternoon.”
Details of the debris have been recorded and sent to Project AWARE for analysis alongside data from similar events held around the World. This data will help drive changes in policies and infrastructure at local, regional and international levels.
“This dive is just the start of our efforts,” commented Donna Hayler-Montague from Bubbles Dive Centre, “In fact, following yesterday’s dive several divers have asked if they can volunteer for the next one and we have had more interest from other local businesses in sponsoring the event so we will be organising another dive very soon. We care passionately about the marine environment and everyone at Bubbles will be working hard on several projects this summer to raise awareness of the importance of conservation.”
If you would like more information on the event yesterday or would like to participate in the next Dive Against Debris visit the Bubbles Dive Centre facebook page onhttp://www.facebook.com/BubblesDiveCentre or contact Donna Hayler-Montague on 2702 8299 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.