A total of 51 divers and 127 volunteers took part in the big clean-up of the waters around Masirah Island. The result? The best possible! During the action, divers and volunteers on the shore collected a huge amount of waste. At the end, when the organisers summed up the actions of the participants, it turned out that as much as 4 tonnes of rubbish had disappeared from the water and the coastal area!
The whole initiative is a joint venture involving the Environment Authority, in collaboration with Oman Fisheries Co. and the diving group Quriyat Divers. The clean-up campaign on Masira Island ran from 4 to 8 November and was very warmly received. This was particularly evident from the involvement of the local community, who took part in the clean-up in large numbers.
Speaking to local media, Juma Khamis al Amri, who leads the Quriyat Divers group, said that as part of the operation, volunteers removed, among other things, broken fishing nets, plastic and metal waste and a mass of empty cans from the water.
We started diving at 8 a.m. and finished at 1 p.m. Volunteers and divers came from several wilayets (provinces). We were all united by a common goal – to clean the marine environment and protect the coral reefs around the island – said Juma Khamis al Amri.
In the stripped nets, the divers noticed many dead fish. According to Amri, the clean-up on Masirah Island also had a deeper dimension. Because in addition to removing trash from the water, it is extremely important to create awareness and the importance of protecting the marine environment. That is why the head of the Quriyat Divers group is encouraging volunteers from other parts of the country.
Before the disposal action, some members of the team made a reconnaissance dive and prepared a report. Later, we discussed everything in an organisational meeting and divided up the tasks. This way we were more efficient and could do more – Amri explained.
The Quiyat Divers group was established in January 2019 and has since conducted several dive clean-ups Across Oman.
Without a doubt, the biggest challenge for divers during clean-up operations are the stripped nets. As well as killing sea creatures, they are also a deadly danger to humans. However, despite the various adversities, the organisers and participants have no lack of enthusiasm. They are determined and intend to continue cleaning up the waters in Oman.
Photo: Mohammed Taha
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