Author Topic: Health and future of our world's oceans...  (Read 6043 times)

brantrav

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Health and future of our world's oceans...
« on: July 08, 2008, 22:09:23 UTC »
For many years I have been hearing about the increasing use of our oceans for waste dumping, irresponsible shipping, fish pillaging, greedy coastal development, and other unhealthy practices which have been increasingly coming to light as causing some very serious and, in fact, irreversible damaging changes to our oceans and coasts.  And in spite of the warnings we've been hearing for decades, we continue to think of our oceans as SO HUGE as to be able to withstand negative human impact at any level.  But it's just not true...

I'd like to hear our fellow divers accounts of what changes they have noticed in their both their favorite and other revisited dive locations over the years.  Have any sites improved? ...remained relatively the same as your first few visits? ...continued to degrade? 

I believe this is a topic is so very urgent.  As divers we're able to see close up just what has been happening beneath the ocean's surface, at least to a recreational depth, and generally close to shore of land masses, both continents as well as coastal and remote islands.  If we wish to continue our most wonderful sport, we're going to need to make our voice loud and clear, yet "negotiative" rather than disruptive.

Anyway, what has been your experience?
brantravels
San Anselmo, CA

Travelnsj

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Re: Health and future of our world's oceans...
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2008, 17:19:38 UTC »
I have been to Palau 8 times. They do not allow Shark Fining or commercial fishing in their waters. You can see it. I have noticed very little change in the Marine life over the years, it is abundant.

I was in Lembeh Straits in December, could not believe the trash in the water but it seemed the critters loved it as they hide in it. I also visited Raja Ampat/Papua and the amount of fish was incredible. The Indonesian government does not allow commercial fishing in that area, although fishing boats sneak in and when either a local resort or LOB catches one the are allowed to cut lines and call the Navy in. One thing I did notice was the boat taking me from Sorido to Sorong.....Just dumped their trash into the water.

Now Malaysia allows fishing in their waters. I have been to both Sipadan and in April to Layang Layang....what I saw in 30+ dives in those locations equals what I would see in 1 or 2 dives in Palau or Raja.
I endeavor to pursue....Spend most of my diving time in the Indo-Pacific region. Lembeh Straits, Raja Ampat and Palau are my favorites!

brantrav

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Re: Health and future of our world's oceans...
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2008, 20:41:06 UTC »
C'mon divers, we need to find out what's going on at our visited dive sites.  I've started to work with Oceana, an international non-profit group interested only in protecting the world's oceans...check out:  www.oceana.org....    And with their research and interview strength, I've been able to learn so very much about just where we're headed in terms of what is going to be viewable for recreational divers in the next 10 - 15 - 20 - 25 years.  The prognosis is dismal...I wish it weren't so, but , alas, it is so.  I urge every diver to send their dive experiences to their representatives in the U. S. Congress (House and Senate), and tell them just how important all of this is to you and to others who don't think about it.  Also to our non-American friends, please do the same with regard to your government representatives.  Government reps need your vote in order to be elected or re-elected.  Let them know just how important their votes and introduced bills are to you, and how you are following their voting record.  Remember, they work for us! not the other way around!  Thanks for your attention.  Let me know what you think...B.                             


brantravels
San Anselmo, CA

Don Stark

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Re: Health and future of our world's oceans...
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2008, 11:36:37 UTC »
Anyone who has gone diving around Providenciales in the Turks and Caicos needs to be aware that there is a development underway that is posing a severe threat to all the Grace Bay dive sites.  A developer has proposed building a "Dubai-style" island from sand dredged from the Leeward Going Through channel.  The government has approved it, then halted it and now it is being challenged by an environmental group (PRIDE TCI).  Despite the current revocation of the permit by the government, dredging appears to be continuing and the visibility on the Grace Bay dive sites has decreased tremendously due to the silting.  The long term impact of this activity is unclear, but it is not likely to be good.  If you are interested in helping to preserve this wonderful dive area, contact pridetci@gmail.com to see how you can help.
Don Stark
ScubaVision Productions
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www.ScubaVisions.TV

brantrav

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Re: Health and future of our world's oceans...
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2008, 18:44:42 UTC »
We've been hearing for a couple of decades now that throughout the world, the reefs we've enjoyed as divers will not survive in their relatively healthy states much past 2050 if reckless and irresponsible fishing, drilling, dredging, and waste disposing continues at the rates they've at least maintained since the mid 20th Century.  My experience as a diver returning again and again to the same sites every few years over my 26 years underwater, has shown me that there has indeed been a significant deleterious effect upon most reefs in my travels over that time period.

The mind-boggling series "Earth: The Biography" which just recently aired (and most likely will be repeating) on the National Geographic Channel, ends its final installment with the argument that Earth has been through devastation before and will continue to be mighty and renewing.  The dinosaurs ruled Earth for 100 million years, and were driven to extinction through their inability to adapt to change. Today, whatever is driven to earlier than desired or expected extinction or radical change, including lifeforms as well as the inorganic (oceans, land masses, climates), will be replaced by other species and geography.  There's a good chance that surviving and/or newly evolved lifeforms will not include us, homo sapiens, a term which oddly enough, which in Latin literally means "wise man."  Will we be wise enough to adapt?  Will we be wise enough to halt our damage?

brantravels
San Anselmo, CA

Don Stark

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Re: Health and future of our world's oceans...
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2008, 18:51:46 UTC »
Agree - we might be the ones at risk of extinction!  I thought the first three segments of the Earth: The Biography were pretty good, but I haven't seen the conclusion yet.  But I'm not surprised with what you have outlined as their conclusion - they made a very strong case that the earth has been constantly evolving with many cataclysmic events shaping the environment and the life forms.    Guess my feeling is that we should do whatever we can to prevent our actions as being the next cataclysmic event!
Don Stark
ScubaVision Productions
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www.ScubaVisions.TV

 

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