The Reef-World Foundation have been designated by United Nations Environment Programme the Regional Coordinators of the Green Fins project operating in six countries aroud the world. Read the latest on the teams progress here.
| What is it? |
Green Fins is an innovative conservation initiative, working with dive centres to address threats to coral reef biodiversity.
Dive Operators join the project for free and agree
to abide by the Green Fins 15 Code of Conduct points. Diving operators are uniquely positioned to act within their own industry and among customers to effect positive change by establishing a network of educated divers through training in the the Green Fins Code of Conduct, a set of standards for environmentally sustainable scuba diving tourism activities. Dive centres operating in accordance with the Code of Conduct are offered “green” certificates once they have undergone their annual Green Fins Assessment. Green Fins promotes good reef health by reducing the impact of diving. It can also be economically beneficial for dive centres, by increasing their attractiveness to tourists and operators who prefer environmentally responsible options.
Green Fins provides a practical framework for implementing environmentally friendly practices and a robust management and assessment system to monitor success and apply lessons learned through the Reef-World GEARS system. Participating dive centres are also trained to provide information to and collaborate with research institutions as well as government/management agencies, and to conduct public awareness campaigns. Green Fins is run autonomously in each country, by the government department responsible for the caring of the seas, coasts or the stakeholders that operate within it. You can read about these National Teams that manage Green Fins on a national scale on the Official Green Fins website.
Green Fins uses dive centres and their customers are an effective tool to raise awareness and educate people about the threats posed to coral reef ecosystems and how to help reduce these. Green Fins Dive Centres display environmental materials for their customers to see and are obligated to carry out underwater clean ups and coral reef monitoring. Green Fins provides them with the materials, training and advice to facilitate this.
| Mission Statement |
"To protect and conserve coral reefs by establishing and implementing environmentally friendly guidelines to promote a sustainable diving and snorkelling tourism industry."
| History |
Reef-World assisted in Thailand in the early years by carrying out assessments of participating dive operators and by implementing training for the Reef Watch reef monitoring method used by Green Fins. The Green Fins Team conducts training in best environmental practice with dive staff, and environmental assessments of dive operations to see how well they are implementing the Code of Conduct. Following this, dive and snorkel business managers are given advice and support to help them improve their environmental practices. Reef-World developed the current www.greenfins.net website and the online Code of Conduct assessment system that helps members improve their environmental practices by providing a benchmark and guidelines for each Code of Conduct item. This website willl be updated in 2013 to better reflect the activities that are happening around the globe.
| Green Fins Across the Region|
Green Fins Thailand, was implemented by the Phuket Marine Biological Centre, Department of Marine and Coastal Resources in 2004. The project was extremely well received with participation from over 100 dive centre in all the major diving destinations in Thailand including Phuket, Koh Tao, Khao Lak and Koh Lanta. Dive centres have been proactive in using the Green Fins environmental materials and guidelines to promote environmental sustainability within their local communities. Continued training and support is required to expand implementation of the Code of Conduct and strengthen annual assessments.
Green Fins Malaysia is managed by the Department Marine Parks, Malaysia and has been implemented through the dive centres in three National Marine Parks. Introduction of Green Fins Code of Conduct has led to improvement in industry practices, including e.g. restriction of fish feeding. Capacity development is required to strengthen the National Team and support networks to increase promotion of the Code of Conduct.
Green Fins Indonesia is overseen by the Ministry of Environment and has been introduced within the diving industry of Manado, North Sulawesi, with involvement of a local University and NGOs. Expansion to additional popular diving destinations is a priority.
Green Fins Philippines is co-managed by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Environment Management Bureau and the Philippine Commission on Sports Scuba Diving under the Department of Tourism. The project was introduced in 2004, and after intensified efforts in 2010 there are now over 70 members at four major diving destinations. Green Fins is becoming an excellent medium for communication between the private and public sectors on a local and national level to strengthen policy and compliance by addressing conflicts of interest as well as perceived inequalities in rights and obligations. Expansion to additional dive destinations has been requested by national partners.
It is Reef-World’s vision to give all dive operators across the region the opportunity to be involved in Green Fins. To find out more about how the Reef-World team out
in South East Asia are doing with the Green Fins project please
see ourlatest news.
"We will conserve only what we love, We will love only what we understand, We will understand only what we are taught"
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