On March 1st Boating Marlborough Dive Centre (recently renamed Waikawa Dive Centre) in Picton, New Zealand organised an underwater clean up of the sea floor in the western arm of Double Cove. This was brought about by Kate Trayling, a dive instructor at Boating Marlborough Dive Centre noticing the rubbish when taking a student for a dive in the Cove. “ We have to do something about this, showing off our beautiful sounds is great but go underwater and in places it isn’t too beautiful.”
The response was amazing with a lot of encouragement from many individuals and companies.
Another local business – Blenheim Dive Centre also contacted them to get involved and asked if they could collect the rubbish they had found and put in one place. They too had experienced the situation in Double Cove.
A clean up dive was organised and all assembled at the dive shop. In total 17 people, divers, boat helpers and three boats joined in. It wasn’t long before the scuba and free divers had amassed bottles, tyres, motor parts, buckets, pipes and unrecognizable objects from the sea floor.”I had to say stop to any more rubbish, and call the divers in, as the boats where fully loaded” said Stuart Scaife the organiser. “We only covered a small area really, and we were all surprised by the amount collected”.
This isn’t the only “clean up dives” or “Dive for Debris” that Boating Marlborough Dive Centre has been involved with, and they have worked in with other caring groups.
Their next rubbish dive is on 22nd April which is international “Earth Day” in which they will dive Waikawa Marina and start from where their last Earth Day dive finished. Last time they had divers from Christchurch and Nelson eager to help in this unique dive.
“All our rubbish clean up dives are free for helpers and divers” said Stuart. “We really appreciate the support we receive and people often donate the use of their boats, resources, and time to help out”
To find out more about Earth Day visit http://www.earthday.org/ alternatively visit http://www.projectaware.org/ to find out how you can get involved or run an activity to help our underwater friends!