& marine debris data submitted to PADI Project Aware and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection!
We teamed up with University of Miami’s Rescue a Reef and the Diver’s Paradise team to collaborate on a scuba cleanup on International Coastal Cleanup Day 2023! We were 1 of 58 cleanups county-wide on September 16th, with a total of 2,929 volunteers and 22,233 lbs of trash collected! This effort was made possible by the amazing and tireless work of the volunteercleanup.org team locally as well as the Ocean Conservancy.
Unlike most of the other cleanups, ours was underwater on the Florida Reef Track! Huge thanks to the 20 divers who came out to collect data on coral bleaching + clean up our beloved home reefs with us! We found plastic bags and a red solo cup out on the reef, illustrating that our disposable social choices have a lasting impact. We discussed how investing in the #reuse future is our way out of this debris disaster and toward a sustainable future. We talked about how single-use plastics are needlessly polluting our environment but that it doesn’t need to be this way! Check out some of our zero-waste tips n’ tricks on our Instagram! You can view our data from dive 1 here and dive 2 here.
While we still couldn’t outplant coral due to the summer’s record-breaking heat wave, we conducted important BleachWatch surveys that will inform the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and researchers on next steps to protect our precious reefs.
Take a look at photos from the day in the gallery below! #MiamiCleanup2023 #SeaTheChange