On Wednesday 1st July, Team Labyrinth – Jase, Jo, James and Roxy – divers, sailors and film makers alike, premiered the first episode in a series of documentaries that they are producing to raise awareness about some of the most pressing issues facing our precious ocean planet.Voyage of the Labyrinth: Coral Island Clean Upshowcases the impact of Dive Against Debris in working towards solutions to stop marine debris at the source. We’re excited to be a part of this important initiative and to highlight the power of scuba divers all over the world in their efforts to fight back against marine debris.
The planning began a few months ago when Jase got in touch with us to collaborate on the first episode: marine debris. With Team Labyrinth being on Tioman Island and me heading there to complete my Dive Against Debris Distinctive Specialty with B&J Diving Centre – the planets had aligned and there wasn’t much more to say other than “lights, camera, action”
Whilst being filmed was a bit disconcerting, it was fantastic to have the opportunity to talk about Dive Against Debris and really highlight the commitment of scuba divers around the world that are taking action and driving real change to address the marine debris issue.
On the way out to our dive sight, we were lucky enough to be joined by a pod of about 20 dolphins. They frolicked at the bow as if they were trying to race the boat, looking up at us cheekily. Their speed and agility in the water were completely awe-inspiring. I was absolutely mesmerised and filled with emotion, a reminder of the absolute necessity to keep our ocean clean and healthy – free of debris so we can continue to experience incredible encounters like this.
Arriving at Coral Island, we were pumped and ready to go – Jase and Jo took to the shallows to scour the mangroves whilst Nic, James, Roxy and I, took to the seafloor to conduct our Dive Against Debris survey.
Despite being in a marine park, discarded fishing nets – smothering the fragile reef – were the reoccurring sight during the survey dive. A depressing reality about the damage that marine debris is inflicting beneath the waves. I thought back to the morning and the fun-loving group of dolphins that joined us – I was distraught at the thought of them getting tangled up in this horrible mess.
My distress turned to determination and hope – we can help turn this ugly problem around and fight for change. After just 45 minutes, we hauled up almost 30kgs of trash. It was satisfying to know that that 30kgs of rubbish could no longer inflict damage on our precious marine environment or our vulnerable wildlife.
Through removing debris and reporting our data online, we are building an accurate and quantitative evidence-base about the types and amounts of marine debris found beneath the waves. No longer can policymakers ignore the issue.
Team Labyrinth’s quest to highlight some of the most pressing issues facing the marine environment through their documentary series “Voyage of the Labyrinth” will help raise awareness and inspire hope that we, the human race, do have the power to ensure that our marine environment gets the protection it needs and deserves for a clean, healthy and abundant ocean planet.