ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY DIVING & SNORKELING. Training for Green Fins member staff

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1 ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY DIVING & SNORKELING Training for Green Fins member staff

2 CONGRATULATIONS! We are now Green Fins members

3 Contents About Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct Environmentally friendly guidelines to diving and snorkelling Environmental briefings

4 Code of Conduct The Code of Conduct is the CORE of Green Fins Dive Centres who follow this will reduce their impact to the surrounding environment VIDEO to guide you through these 15 actions and activities

5 About Green Fins This dive centre is part of a network of over 400 operators across 6 countries We are all working towards making the diving industry sustainable

6 Green Fins Membership As a member, we agree to follow the Green Fins Code of Conduct This presentation will give us tips to follow the Code of Conduct and reduce our impacts

7 Guide to the Code of Conduct #1 ADOPT THE GREEN FINS MISSION STATEMENT To protect and conserve coral reefs by establishing and implementing environmentally friendly guidelines to promote a sustainable diving and snorkelling tourism industry This means making sure the diving and snorkeling industry does not damage the reefs Green Fins is a tool to guide you This protects your jobs in the tourism industry Help Green Fins representatives who might visit you, respond to their questions honestly and communicate with them in a timely manner They are here to support us!

8 Guide to the Code of Conduct #2 DISPLAY THE ADOPTED GREEN FINS AGREEMENT Show our guests what standards we follow Help them understand what we expect from them Promote our active membership to Green Fins

9 Guide to the Code of Conduct #3 ADHERE TO THE GREEN FINS FRIENDLY DIVING AND SNORKELLING GUIDELINES AND ACT AS RESPONSIBLE ROLE MODELS ALL staff follow the Green Fins icons at all times Use permanent caps on tanks not masking tape Make sure all equipment is secured before diving so yours, or your guests, doesn t drag on the reef Be good role models for your guests Correct them if they damage marine life Watch out for photographers!

10 Guide to the Code of Conduct #3 ADHERE TO THE GREEN FINS FRIENDLY DIVING AND SNORKELLING GUIDELINES AND ACT AS RESPONSIBLE ROLE MODELS

11 Guide to the Code of Conduct #3 ADHERE TO THE GREEN FINS FRIENDLY DIVING AND SNORKELLING GUIDELINES AND ACT AS RESPONSIBLE ROLE MODELS

12 Guide to the Code of Conduct #4 PARTICIPATE IN REGULAR UNDERWATER CLEAN UPS AT SELECTED DIVE OPERATOR SITES Clean ups should involve our guests and the local community They can be at dive or beach sites If we record what we collect, we can report it to International Coastal Clean up

13 Guide to the Code of Conduct #5 PARTICIPATE IN THE DEVELOPMENT & IMPLEMENTATION OF A MOORING BUOY PROGRAM, & ACTIVELY USE MOORINGS, DRIFT OR HAND PLACE ANCHORS FOR BOATS Anchoring is extremely damaging to marine habitats. Only anchor in absolute emergencies Use mooring buoys wherever they are available Hand place anchors on rock (not coral!) or sandy areas if necessary

14 Guide to the Code of Conduct #6 PROHIBIT THE SALES OF CORALS AND OHER MARINE LIFE AT THE DIVE OPERATION Shells play an important part of balancing marine ecosystems Removing them can have serious long term effects Don t encourage people to buy shell souvenirs Don t display any around the dive shop Don t wear shell jewellery!

15 Guide to the Code of Conduct #7 PARTICIPATE IN REGULAR CORAL REEF MONITORING AND REPORT CORAL REEF MONITORING DATA TO A REGIONAL CORAL REEF DATABASE We can help scientists collect data to understand coral reefs around the world Ask guests to take photos of bleached corals We can send the photos to a global database to understand bleaching better. Find out about local marine monitoring programmes we could participate in

16 Guide to the Code of Conduct #8 PROVIDE ADEQUATE GARBAGE FACILITIES ON BOARD FACILITY S VESSEL AND DEAL WITH RESPONSIBLY Make sure we have a trash can with a lid on the boat and in the boat toilet Make sure we have ashtrays on the boat and in the shop, and ALL staff and customers use them! Separate our garbage, recycle wherever we can Include information about these in the boat briefing

17 Guide to the Code of Conduct #9 OPERATE UNDER A MINIMUM DISCHARGE POLICY Many chemicals can be very harmful to coral reefs Clean using biodegradable cleaning products or make our own Make sure we collect all batteries from dive torches. They should be safely disposed of, not sent to landfill. Dispose of used engine oil responsibly (do not bury it, or throw it in the sea) Do not feed the fish

18 Guide to the Code of Conduct #10 ABIDE BY ALL LOCAL, REGIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL LAWS, REGULATIONS AND CUSTOMS Please inform our guests of local and national environmental laws These might include briefing them about Marine Protected Areas, or illegal fishing techniques, or not taking shells and coral out the sea This will help our guests understand how they should behave underwater

19 Guide to the Code of Conduct #11 PROVIDE GUESTS WITH AN EXPLANATION OF GREEN FINS FRIENDLY DIVING AND SNORKELING GUIDELINES IN PRE-DIVE BRIEFINGS Remind guests what they should and should not do in the water Explain why it is important to follow your instructions Explain that you may correct them if you see them doing something damaging to the marine environment Use the ICONs to help you

20 Guide to the Code of Conduct #12 PROVIDE TRAINING, BRIEFING OR LITERATURE FOR EMPLOYEES AND GUESTS REGARDING GOOD ENVIRONMENTAL PRACTICES FOR SNORKELLING, DIVING, BOATING, MARINE WILDLIFE INTERACTIONS AND OTHER MARINE RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES All staff will be trained to follow these guidelines Promote environmental courses (like Fish ID or peak performance buoyancy) to our students

21 Guide to the Code of Conduct #13 PROVIDE STAFF AND GUESTS WITH PUBLIC AWARENES AND ENVIRONMENTAL MATERIALS (ID BOOKS, PAMPHLETS ETC) Raises awareness with guests. The more they know about the ocean and marine life, the more they will want to conserve it

22 Guide to the Code of Conduct #14 PROVIDE GUESTS WITH INFORMATION ON LOCAL MARINE PROTECTED AREAS, ENVIRONMENTAL RULES AND REGULATION Tell guests about local marine protected areas (MPAs) Helps them to understand how special these areas are, and that they need to be conserved This will inspire them to be more responsible in the water

23 Guide to the Code of Conduct #15 PROMOTE A STRICT NO TOUCH POLICY FOR ALL REEF DIVING AND SNORKELLING This is the most important point Brief guests about our No Touch policy Correct them if they do touch any coral or marine life Tell guests about our no gloves policy

24 The Green Fins icons Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines Available in multiple languages Should be used to help you teach your customers Easy to understand Now we will through these icons and we can discuss what the ecological significance of each of the do's and don'ts are

25 Ecological Significance of the Green Fins icons No stepping on Coral Coral is a very fragile animal and takes a long time to grow. Watch your feet and fins at all times. No stirring the sediment As you swim, your fins create a wash that can cause sediment and small debris to upset small habitats and cover corals. No touching or chasing marine wildlife This can cause great stress to any animal. Look but never touch and try not to get too close.

26 No feeding fish This has become a large-scale problem all around coral reefs. Green Fins 4 Deadly D s of Fish Feeding 1. Disruption of ecological processes 2. Disadvantageous health impacts to fish 3. Danger to humans 4. Damaging to the environment PLEASE ASK PEOPLE NOT TO FEED THE FISH No littering Marine litter can be ingested by marine life causing health problems, can be dangerous for you too and also affects beaches and the animals that live there when it is washed up on the shore. Bin it, don t throw it. Do not collect dead or alive marine life Everything found naturally underwater will eventually break down and be recycled back into the food chain, even empty shells on the beach play their part. Take nothing.

27

28 No gloves Give divers a false sense of protection that causes them to hold onto anything underwater. Do not support shark finning Shark species have dropped by 80% over the last 50 years. Removing these top predators is highly damaging to the ecology of our seas. Don t eat in restaurants that sell shark products. No spear fishing This method of fishing removes the largest and slowest species which can dramatically change the balance of the ecosystem and upset the food chain.

29 Do not anchor on coral reefs When dropped onto a fragile coral reef it causes great destruction. Coral takes hundreds of years to grow and are very important. Don t buy souvenirs of corals or marine life This encourages, people to remove tons of marine life, dead or alive from marine ecosystems each year for selling to tourists. If we didn t buy it then people wouldn t collect it. Leave it where it belongs. Use mooring buoys By using them you avoid the destructive impacts of anchors. It also sets a good example for others and raises marine environmental awareness.

30 Wear a life jacket For snorkelers, it will help prevent a lot of accidental damage by people who are new to the marine environment. Join in conservation projects Do as much as you can to help organisations and projects who aim to help the natural environment. A little help from everybody goes a long way. REPRESENT GREEN FINS WHEREVER YOU GO! Report Environmental violations Report destructive practices and violations of environmental laws. Informing key authorities of your observations can lead to appropriate action. By letting them know your concerns, you are being part of the solution.

31 Guide to Environmental Briefings Including environmental messages in a pre-dive briefing has been shown to reduce diver contact with coral reefs and other marine life! Here are some examples of what you can include: þ No touching Touching the reef can damage it and spread disease. Harrassing and touching marine life can remove them from their homes leaving them vulnerable to predation. Sticks and reef hooks should only be used on rock, NOT coral. þ Keep away from the reef Tell your guests to maintain good buoyancy this will reduce damage caused by fins and fin wash. By not getting too close to the reef, animals feel safer, allowing you to enjoy more natural behaviour.

32 Guide to Environmental Briefings þ No gloves In some dive sites it s illegal to use gloves while diving. By providing protection, they encourage people to touch the reef and marine life. In most cases, they won t remove the risk of injury from dangerous marine life. þ Secure all equipment Dangling equipment may break coral without divers even realising. Protect the coral and your equipment by using BCD clips to secure guages and octopus. þ No collecting If it is found underwater, it should stay underwater. Collecting marine life, dead or alive, is discouraged because it is often illegal and can leave your favourite species homeless.

33 Guide to Environmental Briefings þ Be a responsible photographer Research shows that photographers damage the reef more than any other diver. Help them to maintain neutral buoyancy throughout the dive and correct them if necessary. Encourage minimal flash photography as overflashing can damage many species.

34 Guide to Environmental Briefings Here s an example of how to integrate environmental content into a normal dive briefing: Going to dive the house reef this morning. Shallow reef entry. Take care not to descend too fast - you might crash into fragile coral which takes many years to grow. Make sure all your gauges and hoses are tucked away, so you don t hit marine life and damage our equipment! IF I SEE YOU POTENTIALLY CAUSING DAMAGE, I MIGHT CORRECT YOU DON T BE ALARMED. Steep slope dive max. depth 20m. Don t go below me.

35 Guide to Environmental Briefings Dive time 40 mins. Lost buddy 1 min search, Safety stop 5m for 3 minutes. We might be lucky and see lots of marine life, like turtles. Do not chase them, this stresses them. Signal review, low on air, buddy pairs Let s go diving!

36 Save Coral Reefs today, dive the Green Fins way! We are all part of the Green Fins network and we must all pledge to follow this philosophy to environmentally friendly diving at all times. It s your responsibility to make a difference!

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