Dive Against Debris
Dive Against Debris
Globally, annual plastic production has boomed from 1.7 million tons in 1950 to almost 300 million. As much as 250 million metric tons of plastic could make its way into the ocean by 2025. The environmental damage caused by plastic debris alone is estimated at $13 billion a year.
As scuba divers, we are invested in the beauty and conservation of our oceans and waterways. Monthly, Adventure Outfitters partners with Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful and Project AWARE to clean up the inner-coastal and inner-Bay waterways including Ballast Point Park, Picnic Island, Marjorie Park on Davis Island and the Old Gandy Bridge in Tampa Bay that are the gateways to our oceans.
About the Dive Against Debris Program:
Our program started in August, 2014 completing several cleanup dives, collecting more than 5,000 pounds of debris and recycling materials. In addition to cleaning up local dive sites, we distribute our data surveys to Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful and Project AWARE for long-term analysis and research. We rely on our loyal volunteers that brave the poor visibility to help us clean up these sites. Without them, we would not be able to continually improve our community of unsightly debris, and create a safe haven for the local aquatic flora and fauna.
We also teach a Dive Against Debris specialty course. The course offers several benefits including:
- Educating you about the marine debris issue. You will learn what damage has already been done, where ocean trash comes from and how you can be an active part of the solution.
- Equipping you with the knowledge and skills needed to conduct a Dive Against Debris survey. You will learn how to create a survey dive profile, understand the best use of photography and make effective decisions on what to remove and what to leave behind.
Highlighting the five steps needed to record and report findings from a Dive Against Debris dive: weigh, sort, record, dispose and report.
- Explaining how to join the global Project AWARE movement of scuba divers protecting our ocean planet
Throughout the course you will gain a detailed understanding of what issues debris causes in the underwater environment. After the course is complete, you will be empowered to participant in ongoing Dive Against Debris surveys near you, and even start a survey of your own!
- The valuable data you submit as part of these surveys will help to support the development and implementation of policies that will improve solid waste management at all levels. Plus, your findings will be added to the interactive Dive Against Debris Map so that you and others will be able to visualise your impact at a local and global level.
In addition to managing debris and collecting, we also include a prize for the most-unique items, a kayaker prize and several more for the hard work of our volunteers! We provide a free air fill or a free air tank rental and we highly discount rental gear for our volunteers.
Who is Affected by Marine Debris:
663 marine species; 100% of sea turtles; 20% of all seabirds; Nearly 50% of all marine mammal species; Human health and our economy; Damages and destroys corals, sponges and anemones; Damages recreational and commercial vessels; Local fisherman; and Affects the beauty of our beaches and shores.
both divers and non-divers can help end this problem by picking up debris before it floats out and deposits on the ocean floor where it can’t be retrieved. When you participate in clean up dives, you are diving for change. You make the ocean safer for marine life; the data you collect helps inform policy to improve waste management by helping convince individuals, governments and businesses to act on marine debris. Your voice and actions can change public opinion, behavior and public policies so less trash is dumped in the environment and handled properly.
Our long-term data surveys give the best results. They build a more convincing argument for change and help identify local seasonal trends, such as those caused by weather patterns, tourist seasons, industries and/or events.
We need divers, shore personnel, data collectors, and kayakers. All volunteers and families are welcome!
All clean up dives are on a Sunday morning.
Davis Island: November 12, 2017 at 9 a.m.
Picnic Island: January 28, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Green Gasparilla: February 3, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Davis Island: April 22, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Picnic Island: June 17, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Ballast Point: August 19, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Davis Island: October 21, 2018 at 9 a.m.
Old Gandy Bridge: November 18, 2018 at 9 a.m.
If you haven’t been to a clean up dive and are interested, please stop by the shop for more information. We would love to have you join us!