Marine Debris, Trash or Treasure?

As both an avid diver and a conservationist, no matter what I'm doing, I notice the impacts that we have on our environment.

When diving recently in Indonesia at Nusa Penida, I was shell-shocked at the amount of debris on the reef. The community that lives on the foreshore, make their living from fishing the pristine waters that surround their island, and sell this on to the tourists on mainland Bali and beyond. They have little knowledge of the impacts that their rubbish can cause on marine life beyond their backyards.

Fortunately, the largest piece of debris that I discovered on that dive was part of a net, and after some time, I was able to remove it from the coral that it had become entangled into. Tucked away safely in my BCD, I was able to bring it back to the surface.

This small piece of a worldwide puzzle, represents that trip, that dive, and that community to me, and now has pride of place on my desk.

Which begs the thought. Can trash be turned to treasure? Thousands of people worldwide comb the beaches looking for lost and discarded treasures, one mans trash is absolutely, my treasure!