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5 Ways to Protect Coral Reefs on World Environment Day and Beyond

05 Jun 2023

The Maldives is well known as one of the world’s top scuba diving and snorkelling destinations – the coral reefs and abundance of marine life make a trip here unforgettable and at Prodivers we are very fortunate to be placed at the very heart of it. The coral reef is an incredible, yet fragile, environment and we want to do all we can protect it and you can help too by following these simple steps:

  • Choose reef-safe sunscreen. Traditional sunscreens are harmful to the reefs, even ‘water-resistant’ varieties wash off and once in the ocean they harm the coral and marine life too. Protect yourself and the reef by choosing to cover up with UV rash guards and ‘reef-safe’ sun protection products.
  • Look but don’t touch. Coral reef habitats are extremely fragile and touching them, standing on them or even a small accidental fin kick can cause years of growth to be destroyed. Marine life is much more likely to stick around for you to observe if you stay a respectful distance away and therefore reduce the chance of accidentally touching and harming the reef.
  • Have good buoyancy control. Being able to fine-tune depth with breathing whilst diving is not only good for the reef, it’s good for you and your equipment too. Your air consumption will improve, you’ll be much more comfortable in the water and be able to reduce the amount of weight you need, you’ll be able to get closer to the reef while still ensuring no physical contact is made.
  • Say no to single-use plastics. The plight of the ocean in terms of plastic debris is well known so if you see litter and it is safe to pick it up please do so. Avoid the use of single-use plastics and take any empty plastic containers home with you where they can be more easily disposed of. Join beach clean-ups at home as well as on holiday – every piece of plastic collected is a piece less in the ocean. The theme for World Environment Day 2023 is ‘Solutions to Plastic Pollution’, bringing to the world’s attention the issue of plastic in the environment.
  • Fight climate change. Coral reefs depend on a stable ocean temperature so doing your bit to halt climate change will help. Simple things such as switching off the lights, walking instead of driving and saving water, as well as encouraging others to do the same, will all make a difference.

Let’s all do what we can to protect the coral reefs we love – snorkelling and diving just wouldn’t be the same without them!