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Taking Action Against

Marine Debris

Our ocean is under siege. More than 250 million tons of plastic are estimated to make its way into our ocean by 2025. Everyday trash is entering the sea at an alarming rate. Learn how our community of divers fights back against the onslaught of trash.

The Issue

Marine debris is not only unsightly, it’s dangerous to sea life, hazardous to human health, and costly to our economies. Marine animals become entangled in debris, and even mistake it for food - often with fatal results. Divers, swimmers and beach goers can be directly harmed by encounters with marine debris or its toxins. The environmental damage caused by plastic debris alone is estimated at US$13 billion a year.

Learn more about the Ugly Journey of Our Trash.

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What We're Doing

Project AWARE works to reduce underwater impacts of marine debris and prevent trash from entering the ocean in the first place.

Through Partnerships Against Trash, we work with businesses, NGOs and governments to advocate for long-term solutions and influence waste management policies at local, national and international levels.

But global change is also empowered by grassroots action. That’s why we developed our flagship citizen science program, Dive Against Debris®,  the first and only marine debris survey of its kind focused on scuba divers reporting types and quantities of debris found on the ocean floor. By using and sharing the data reported by Dive Against Debris volunteers, online and through our partnerships, we're helping bridge the gap in knowledge and build convincing arguments to lead to change.

Moreover, our most dedicated Dive Against Debris leaders across the globe are taking their commitment to the fight against ocean trash to the next level through Adopt a Dive Site™. Adopt a Dive Site participants’ local, repeated marine debris surveys help improve the health of ocean ecosystems, but more importantly, they provide valuable, much-needed information about marine debris to help inform policy change.

Together, we’re working toward a clean, healthy ocean planet.

How You Can Help

Global change is empowered by grassroots action. We need you – ocean enthusiasts and the scuba diving community – to help by taking action in your local community or next dive adventure!

If you’re a certified diver, you can collect and report important data. Through Project AWARE’s Dive Against Debris, remove marine debris on your dive and report the results. Together we make the ocean safer for marine life, and more importantly, information you report helps inform policy change. With your help, Project AWARE can use the information you report through Dive Against Debris to convince individuals, governments and businesses to act against marine debris.

Protect what you love and join citizens scientists everywhere. Join or lead a Dive Against Debris survey today.

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Make your dives count for a clean ocean. Be part of the solution and contribute to the #NextMillion2020

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