Take the DYPP (Do Your Part Pledge)
It can be overwhelming to think about how we can protect our oceans, however there are simple things anyone can do to make a big difference. Whether you’re at home or on a dive vacation, here are 4 things you can do for the ocean that help to promote healthy marine ecosystems:
Practice Low-impact Diving
- Good buoyancy is key while diving and snorkeling – by not bumping into coral heads and kicking up the bottom, you can prevent physical damage to the reef.
- Don’t touch or take anything (unless it is trash!)
- Stand up for the reefs! If you see someone touching marine life or knocking into coral, let your divemaster or group leader know.
Decrease Plastic Pollution
- Bring a reusable water bottle and bag on your vacation – use them everywhere you go.
- Take enough toiletries with you for your own use (ie. shampoo bottles, sunscreen, defog), and consider taking any single use plastics home with you to recycle if your resort does not have a recycling program.
- Make cleaning up plastic trash part of your day – grab a bag for your own beach clean up – fill it with trash and discard of it properly.
Protect Local Waters
- Wear reef-safe sunscreen – sunscreen has been proven to cause coral bleaching by promoting viral infections of hard corals in low concentration (biodegradable sunscreens are not only reef-safe but fish and shark safe too!).
- Reduce the amount of harmful chemicals in local runoff by reusing your towels and linens and by using natural, biodegradable shower supplies.
- Decrease your water usage by taking shorter showers or turning off the water while you are shaving.
When Abroad, Go Local
- Eat local and sustainable seafood and produce. Not sure what is local? Just ask your server. Not sure what seafood is sustainable? Check out www.seafoodwatch.org and bring the print out on your trip (they also have an app).
- Purchase souvenirs that are made locally and sustainably, i.e not purchasing coral jewelry which is being depleted around the world
- Give gifts without guilt – opt for interactive presents like teaching the locals something you like to do. You can create long lasting memories, instead of giving gifts that could lead to more ocean pollution after they’ve been used.