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All posts tagged Conservation

#SaveOurReefs

Categories: Green Tips, Uncategorized
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RWF_coralreef

Image credit: Reef-World Foundation.

Every diver should be environmentally conscious. After all, divers live to experience the beauty of our oceans – and therefore must respect and protect them. They should not be an alternative group of divers but rather, the norm.

Diving and snorkelling is a huge industry worldwide and the primary reason for travel for many tourists. One of the most famous examples is the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia, which receives around 2 million visitors each year.

Taking a closer look at the statistics: if on average, a single diver contacts a reef 24 times per hour – and that if just 30 divers are on that site in one hour over 700 contacts could be made, then the potential for damage to reefs over the course of time can be catastrophic. Moreover, with the threat of climate change, our reefs are facing coral bleaching, a phenomenon that occurs when algae – a coral’s primary source of food – leaves a coral, causing it to become stressed and more vulnerable.

It is up to both divers as well as dive operators to take responsibility.

For environmentally conscious divers – happy reefs start with the selection of an environmentally conscious dive operator. This demand will push other operators that are not up to standard out of business or better yet, force them to be more sustainable.

Environmentally conscious dive operators must follow best practices, such as the Green Fins practices, to ensure that their divers are environmentally conscious both in and out of the water through education and awareness of the issues the reefs they are coming to experience face.

A great first step towards ensuring more environmentally conscious divers is to check out the Green Fins website, which contains a wealth of resources to get started.

#saveourreefs

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Give Consideration to our Furry Friends

Categories: Green Tips
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It’s a big question, and a difficult one to answer. How beneficial is human-wildlife interaction, and how much harm might it cause?
Often wildlife activities or viewings are advertised as ‘eco-friendly’ and supportive of wildlife because part of the price or additional encouraged donations goes to the conservation of the animals. Furthermore, they are seen in their ‘natural’ habitats and are in a protected, comfortable environment.
But critics have commented recently that even if the animals are not obviously enduring harm, the long-term effects may not be so sustainable. Of course, when animals are around humans habitually, their reactions and behaviours change. They may not flee from predators or poachers as they naturally would.
On your next eco-tourism outing, you might consider going to an animal sanctuary for rescued animals that cannot be returned to the wild, or view animal behaviour from a distance that doesn’t allow interactions between you and that particular species. As exciting as it may be to have a macaque on your shoulder – it may also contribute to the poaching and trade of these beautiful animals.

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Diving into Conservation

Categories: Recommended Reading, Sea, Southeast, Water, Wildlife
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Photo: Reef World Foundation/Green Fins

Photo: Reef World Foundation/Green Fins

I was that kid who spent most of his life underwater. I would spend hours swimming around the bottom of the pool, trying to see without the use of a mask, and testing the boundaries of a new world. Whether peering at it through chlorine-filled red eyes, or between winces trying to ignore another ear infection, I have always been fascinated with the underwater environment. I couldn’t wait to learn to dive and I decided at a young age that I would make it my life’s ambition to work with our seas and oceans. That kid is now a professional SCUBA diver and marine biologist working in international conservation focussing largely upon sustainable diving and marine tourism. By JJ Harvey. Read more.

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Best Responsible Tourism Destination

Borneo Rainforest LodgeBorneo Rainforest Lodge (BRL) is nestled in a magnificent setting alongside the Danum River flowing through Sabah’s largest protected lowland rainforest – Danum Valley Conservation Area of 43,800 hectares of pristine and undisturbed tropical flora and fauna in the eastern part of Sabah. This pristine rainforest is also home to more than 340 species Birds, 124 species of Mammals, 72 species of Reptiles, 56 species of Amphibians and a staggering 200 species of plants per hectare.

BRL has 30 individual chalets with fans and en-suite bathrooms, accommodating up to only 60 guests on any one day and on a Full-Board basis. The newly opened 3 units of Premium Villas offer a higher level of comfort. These two single-storey and a double-storey chalets combine minimalist design and green conservation exercising eco sensitive structure with minimal footprint. Each chalet has its own outdoors tub attached to spacious viewing deck for a panoramic view of the river and serene forest landscape.

 

fog catchers

When dense fog sweeps in from the Pacific Ocean, special nets on a hillside catch the moisture and provide precious water to the village of Bellavista, about 10 miles (16 kilometers) outside of Lima, Peru. With a few thousand dollars and some volunteer labor, a village can set up fog-collecting nets that gather hundreds of gallons of water a day—without a single drop of rain falling, conservationists say. By Helen Fields. Read more.

 

The Last of the Pink Dolphins

With the number of these unique mammals plummeting due to development, land reclamation and pollution, now is the time to see them before it’s too late.

When Simon Holliday jumped into the water to swim from Hong Kong to Macau on 24 May 2014, he was feeling anything but ready. Kate Springer Read more.

 

November 06 2015 – Last week we were reminded that there’s still plenty to both love and learn about our planet, as news went viral about a 16th-century church in Mexico spookily rising from the watery depths. Abandoned in the 18th Century after a plague swept through the Chiapas region, the Temple of Santiago usually rests about 30m underwater. Ellie Cobb Read more.

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November 2015 – Can the travel industry have an impact on saving Asia Pacific’s shark population from extinction? Dr. Andy Cornish, shark & ray initiative leader at WWF International, draws the connection between tourism and marine conservation. PATA Conversations Read more.

 

November 2015 – Discover the national park hotel that’s powered by cinnamon wood. Hiran Cooray, chairman of Jetwing Hotels, shares the initiatives that set standards for sustainable comfort and helped put Sri Lanka on a level playing field in the tourism industry. PATA Conversations Read more.

November 03 2015 – “Hold it.” Hasri’s upheld hand tells us. He takes two soundless steps on the dried leaves of the lowland Borneo rainforest and listens. We pause for the strange sound to repeat itself among the jungle cicadas and morning calls of birds. David McGuire Read more.