Words by Zoe Fowler
It's important for us to make people more aware of the debris crisis around our oceans as this problem is becoming more of an issue every day with millions of tonnes of pollution making its way each year into our waters. It saddens us to find that this debris problem is now encroaching on our local marine life and their environment. So on the 15th of July Anna, Tim and myself (Zoe) organised Sweep Our Seas dive/beach clean up day.
We had a very successful day and were extremely surprised and happy with the amount rubbish removed from the Tangalooma Ship Wrecks in 30 minutes. We divided into three dive groups each starting in different sections of the wrecks and surrounding areas. From; a fishing rod, plastic bottles, lids, gloves, sunglasses, fishing line and more. I was shocked to see how much we collected in such a short time frame.
Not only was there substantial debris on the bottom of the sea floor (estimated 70% of pollution) but it's also what people are leaving behind and floating on the surface. Lucky for us we had Anna and her beach clean up crew walking along the beach and surrounding areas collecting a massive portion of rubbish which had a huge impact on the success of our day.
At the end of the day Anna, Tim and I spent a couple hours sorting through the collection of debris sorting it into piles and recycling what we could. It was a hard and smelly task but as a result, we've managed to collect data for Project Aware to add into the debris research as well as successfully cleaning up a small portion of our ocean.
We would like to thank the help and support from Adreno (especially Becky and Jacob who joined us on the cleanup dive), Tangatours, Tangalooma Island Resort and Marine Education Center plus the local dive community and the general public.
We are excited to organise another Sweep Our Seas dive/beach clean up in the near future and will continue in spread the word on debris. We would finally like to do a BIG shout out to Project Aware and Take 3 for their daily efforts in the Fight against debris.