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OPERATIONAL HANDBOOK Dive and Snorkel Centres


Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


A practical guide for applying best environmental practice within dive and snorkel centres. For dive and snorkel centre owners, managers and staff, as well as resource managers


Foreword

by UNEP Executive Director

Diving towards sustainable economic growth As the fastest growing sector in the world, tourism represents a strategy opportunity for sustainable blue economic development. However, tourism can be a double-edged sword. The vibrant life on coral reefs draws growing numbers of people to tropical coasts – one million new divers are certified every year and number of snorkelers is even higher. Such additional pressures create risks. This handbook provides practical guidance to help those who rely on coral reef ecosystems reduce the risk of degrading their key natural asset. World tourism is at an all-time high with over 1.2 billion tourists traveling around the globe in 2015, driving considerable economic growth. In 2009 it accounted for 5 per cent of global GDP, 6 per cent of jobs and almost 10 per cent of investment. This represents a significant source of foreign exchange for many countries, with tourism making up a third of the economic value of coral reefs globally. However many locations struggle to cope with rapidly increasing tourism catalysed by ever more affordable air travel and growing disposable income in developed economies.

the Phuket Marine Biological Centre in 2004. It builds on a simple 15-point code of conduct and a robust assessment system for dive centres, which enables their environmental performance to be measured, evaluated and certified. This includes comprehensive criteria for high-risk practices both above and below the water, and offers simple, realistic and low cost alternatives. This series of three Operational Handbooks consolidates over 12 years of implementation experience across six Southeast Asian countries. It pulls together the lessons learned by dive and snorkel guides, instructors, partner agencies and resource and business managers. Solutions to everyday challenges are presented alongside step by step guidance for introducing and sustaining Green Fins activities within tourist destinations and countries. As such it provides a very practical strategic guide for the public and private sector to deliver on the Convention on Biological Diversity Aichi targets and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It will help dive centres, national authorities and local conservations reduce anthropogenic pressures on oceans, seas and marine resources, while mobilising financial resources, communities and sustainable production and consumption patterns.

Green Fins is a public private partnership initiative for environmental stewardship in the diving and snorkelling industry, which was established by United Nations Environment Programme and The Reef-World Foundation in collaboration with

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres

Achim Steiner United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme


Foreword

by CEO of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)

I had made a promise to my son, to take him to the Great Barrier Reef and, when we finally went, we met a fish named Wally - a humphead wrasse. Also known as the Maori wrasse, males can grow to two metres in length and can weigh up to 180kg. There is something about marine wildlife that brings about a sense of awe, then majesty, followed by serenity. As a recreational snorkeler I have seen at first hand the changes in our marine ecosystems. The diversity has decreased as creatures become endangered or extinct. Even the vibrancy in colours has diminished and this cannot and must not continue. At PATA, we take issues concerning sustainable tourism very seriously and we recognise the importance of a strong and forceful entity that can be an international voice to inspire the protection and conservation of marine life and coral reefs. Green Fins does just that through its grassroots efforts to provide education and guidelines to local dive communities. It is well known in the tourism industry that global visitation is on the upswing, with particular growth projected in the Asia Pacific region, the world’s centre of biodiversity. The increasing demand from tourism on our Earth’s precious resources highlights the need for best practices and to set standards to maintain

sustainable development. As the world’s only UNEP recognised international set of best practice guides for SCUBA diving and snorkelling activities, Green Fins’ three Operational Handbooks provide ‘a practical guide for applying best environmental practice within dive and snorkel centres’. These books give actionable solutions to dive centre owners, managers, staff and resource managers for handling environmental challenges. PATA is proud to endorse the work of Reef-World and the Green Fins initiative in working with local communities to empower people to act in a way that protects our marine resources. I am confident that, with the help of Reef-World, these Green Fins Operational Handbooks will give our dive and snorkel tourism communities the knowledge, expertise and commitment required to ensure that generations to come will be able to meet Wally and his extended family.

Mario Hardy Chief Executive Officer, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)


TABLE OF CONTENTS Pg. 8

Introduction to the Operational Handbook

Pg. 9

Introduction to Green Fins

Pg. 11 Membership Process Pg. 13 What is the Code of Conduct (COC)? Pg. 16 COC 1- Adopt the Green Fins mission statement Pg. 18 COC 2- Display adopted Green Fins agreement for dive operators and individuals Pg. 22 COC 3- Adhere to Green Fins ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ and act as a responsible role model for guests

Pg. 39 COC 8- Provide adequate garbage facilities on board facility’s vessels and deal with responsibly

Pg. 44 COC 9- Operate under a ‘minimum discharge’ policy for waste Pg. 50 COC 10- Abide by all local, regional, national and international environmental laws, regulations and customs

Pg. 52 COC 11- Provide guests with an explanation of Green Fins ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ in pre-dive briefings

Pg. 55 COC 12- Provide training, briefings or literature for guests

regarding good environmental practices for snorkelling, diving, boating, marine wildlife interaction, and other marine recreation activities

Pg. 28 COC 4- Participate in regular underwater clean-ups at dive operator selected sites Pg. 30 COC 5- Participate in the development and implementation of a mooring buoy program, and actively use moorings, drift or hand place anchors for boats.

Pg. 59 COC 13- Provide guests with public awareness and

Pg. 33 COC 6- Prohibit the sale of corals and other marine life at the dive operation

Pg. 61 COC 14- Provide guests with information on local marine

Pg. 36 COC 7- Participate in regular coral reef monitoring, and report coral reef monitoring data to a regional coral reef database

Pg. 63 COC 15- Promote a strict ‘No touch’ policy for all

environmental materials (books, pamphlets, fish ID books, etc) protected areas, environmental rules and regulations reef diving and snorkelling

DONATE NOW- to help Green Fins grow

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


INTRODUCTION TO THE OPERATIONAL HANDBOOK This is one of three in a series of Operational Handbooks to support Green Fins introduction and implementation at the three levels of operation:

1. Dive / Snorkel Centre 2. Site (tourist destination) 3. National

This handbook combines all the Green Fins learning materials and guides into a one stop shop of practical solutions to every day environmental challenges at dive and snorkel centres. It will lead you through a step by step guide to following the Green Fins Code of Conduct. For each Code of Conduct point you will find simple instructions as well as useful reference documents, educational posters and guides to support you.

Download! - Green Fins brochure

8

- The Green Fins Guide

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


INTRODUCTION TO GREEN FINS

Mission statement: ” TO PROTECT AND CONSERVE CORAL REEFS BY ESTABLISHING AND IMPLEMENTING ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY GUIDELINES TO PROMOTE A SUSTAINABLE DIVING AND SNORKELLING TOURISM INDUSTRY ”

The Green Fins approach promotes environmental awareness and stewardship within the diving and snorkelling industry. The message aims to inspire actions for lasting and positive change through simple, realistic and meaningful actions.

Download! What is Green Fins

INTRODUCTION TO GREEN FINS

9


Dive and snorkel centres operating in Green Fins active locations can become members by signing the membership form and pledging to follow the Code of Conduct. CLICK HERE to learn more about Green Fins!

Active Green Fins members are assessed and certified annually by qualified Green Fins Assessors to measure compliance. Members will

Following all aspects of this handbook will help you to achieve a better score in your annual assessments.

be promoted on the Green Fins website and associated social media. They can also promote themselves through use of the Green Fins logo and materials in line with the Green Fins Brand Book. 10

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres

Download! - Green Fins Membership Form - Green Fins Brand Book


MEMBERSHIP PROCESS 1

2

Dive and snorkel operators sign up for

FREE MEMBERSHIP by signing a membership form and

Based on the results of the assessment,

the Assessor consults with the business management

Each activity is graded either

The assessment results in a

GREEN, YELLOW or RED*,

SCORE

TO AGREE ON

3 REALISTIC

=

ACTIONS

to address the most pressing

BUSINESS OPERATIONS to

environmental concerns to be implemented prior to the next assessment (annually).

MARINE BIODIVERSITY

Member achieves

7

‘ACTIVE MEMBER’

STATUS, and is awarded CERTIFICATE

and provided OUTREACH MATERIALS AND TOOLKIT.

ENVIRONMENTAL RISK ASSESSMENTS are carried out by trained Green Fins Assessors DURING A NORMAL DIVE OR SNORKEL TOUR, in an open and consultative manner

best practices for the industry and solutions to common industry threats

Green Fins Code of Conduct

6

3

is provided for all dive centre staff (including boat crew) by Green Fins on

agreeing to adhere to the

5

ENVIRONMENTAL TRAINING

4

based on the effectiveness of controls in place to mitigate

THREAT TO THE ENVIRONMENT. Each grade and code of conduct item carries a SCORE, which is weighted by it’s threat.

CONTINUED MEMBERSHIP and promotion

DURING THE ASSESSMENT Assessors follow a robust assessment protocol which enables them to measure dive centre performance against a set criteria based on the

Green Fins Code of Conduct

Training,

Annual reduction in environmental threat shown through continued decrease in assessment scores, indicating effective environmental policy

repeated annually.

‘SUSPENDED MEMBER’STATUS

ASSESSMENT and consultation

Company is then listed on

GREEN FINS WEBSITE and

TOP 10

DIVE CENTRES

The ten dive centres with the BEST ASSESSMENT SCORES are showcased throughout the Green Fins website and network.

If, after three assessments member does not achieve reduction in overall score, continued membership is discussed with a Green Fins Assessor and may result in membership suspension.

promoted through the network.

11

* Key:

YELLOW: control(s) are in place RED: control(s) are but there is room for improvement. missing or inadequate.


Where are you located? Find out if full

Green Fins membership is available to you by visiting:

www.greenfins.net

All dive and snorkel centres can follow the Code of Conduct as well as use all our materials which are

FREE TO DOWNLOAD

from the website, even if you’re not in an active Green Fins location.

If you would like to explore the possibility of supporting a Green Fins Assessor Team to visit your business and other nearby businesses to conduct the training and assessment, contact:

info@greenfins.net 12

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


WHAT IS THE CODE OF CONDUCT (COC)?

The Green Fins Code of Conduct (COC) is a list of 15 actions and practices designed to reduce the ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT of diving and snorkelling operations. Dive and snorkel operators who follow the Code of Conduct will enhance the positive environmental and social impact of their businesses.

Download! - Green Fins Code of Conduct - English - Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct – Dive Operator and Staff

WHAT IS THE CODE OF CONDUCT (COC)? 13


These are the Guidelines to the Code of Conduct, created in a more attractive way to be displayed in dive centres and snorkel operators:

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


WHAT IS THE CODE OF CONDUCT (COC)? 15


COC 1: Adopt the Green Fins mission statement

CLICK to play

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


” TO PROTECT AND CONSERVE CORAL REEFS BY ESTABLISHING AND IMPLEMENTING ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY GUIDELINES TO PROMOTE A SUSTAINABLE DIVING AND SNORKELLING TOURISM INDUSTRY ”

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Show your commitment to Green Fins by assisting Green Fins Assessors to organise your annual training and assessment. Return phone calls and respond to e-mails quickly to let them know when they can join one of your tours.

COC 1 17


COC 2: Display adopted Green Fins agreement for dive operators and individuals

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Where funding is available, Green Fins centres will be given a MEMBERSHIP PACK to promote environmental awareness and best practices within the diving community.

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Where materials have not, or cannot be supplied

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO DOWNLOAD any of these materials

FOR FREE to print off for display.

Download! ALL the Green Fins awareness and educational materials

COC 2 19


Ensure you display these materials clearly within your centre and on company vessels to help raise awareness to good environmental practices (e.g. Certificate, Guidelines to the Code of Conduct and the Icons)

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Green Fins members can promote their membership by using the Green Fins logo on their website, social media (Tripadvisor, Facebook, etc.), painted on boats, or anywhere throughout business facilities.

On the Green Fins website you can access the following logo promotion materials for

FREE DOWNLOAD: - Green Fins Stencil - Green Fins Save Our Reef Stickers - Green Fins Flag - Green Fins Bag - Green Fins T-shirt - Green Fins Brochure

COC 2 21


COC 3: Adhere to Green Fins ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ and act as a responsible role model for guests

Visiting guests will follow the example set by industry representatives. All dive and snorkel staff should ensure they use this influence to encourage responsible behaviour above and below the water by acting as responsible role models at all times. 22

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Display and brief all staff and customers

TO ENSURE THEY FOLLOW the Green Fins set of icons. No stepping on coral

No stirring the sediment

No touching or chasing marine life

No gloves

For more information on why each of these Icons should be followed, review the

No feeding fish

No littering

No spearfishing

Do not support shark finning

ECOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE ICONS which can also be used as a training aide for new staff and customers.

Don’t buy souvenirs of coral and marine life

Do not collect dead or alive marine life

Do not anchor on coral reefs

Use mooring buoys

Download! - Green Fins icons - Green Fins Significance of icon

Wear a life jacket when snorkelling

Report environmental violations

Join in conservation projects COC 3 23


MO

DEL

R ES P O N

LE R O L

E

SIB

While in the water dive and snorkel staff

must follow the Green Fins

DIVER DOS AND DON’TS and encourage their guests to do the same. Ensuring guests’ equipment is secure will reduce the chance of accidental damaging contact with marine life. PROVIDE FUNCTIONING EQUIPMENT CLIPS ON ALL RENTAL EQUIPMENT TO AVOID DANGLING EQUIPMENT. Clips are widely available for purchase or you can make them yourself. Ask your dive staff and boat crew to check your guests’ equipment is tucked away before starting the dive.

Download! Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct - Diver 24

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


UNDERWATER CORRECTIONS Managing guests well underwater will reduce the chance of damaging contact and negative interaction with marine life

Watch them closely at all times

Always provide thorough environmental content in pre-dive briefings

Correct bad behaviour e.g. when they get too close to the reef or if they are hassling marine life

After the dive, explain to guests why behaviour was corrected. This will make it a positive experience, as well as adding value to the overall service.

CHOOSE ROUTES APPROPRIATE TO GUEST EXPERIENCE. Do not use masking tape to indicate full tanks, this can easily become marine litter when removed. Tank caps are widely available for purchase, or you can make them yourself.

Do not take inexperienced divers to sites where they are likely to come into contact with the reef such as swim throughs, narrow gulleys or gaps, or those with strong currents or wave surge.

COC 3 25


Snorkellers: Provide life jackets for snorkellers, this will give them some support in the water and reduce the chance of them standing on the reef to rest. Where possible, don’t provide fins or booties for snorkellers, this will eliminate the chance of damaging contact from fin kicks and standing. Do not take inexperienced snorkellers onto shallow reef areas.

RESPONSIBLE USE OF EQUIPMENT Special care should be given to divers with specialist equipment

1. Photography equipment Brief all divers with photography equipment on best practice for underwater photography.

Download! Green Fins Underwater Photography Guidelines (courtesy of GFAS in Thailand)

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Consider a COMPANY POLICY where only experienced divers can use photography equipment underwater, inform guests of this by including a statement in the COMPANY LIABILITY RELEASE FORM. Staff should be encouraged to help inexperienced photographers underwater by steadying them for a shot, or even taking photos for them.

2. Muck stick / pointer Brief all divers with a muck stick / pointer on best practice (e.g. do not touch live reef or marine life with the stick, do not use the stick to manipulate marine life). Ban customers who do not follow best practice from using a muck stick / pointer, inform guests of this by including a statement in the company liability release form.

Do not serve your customers marine life that have an IMPORTANT ROLE ON THE REEF, are THREATENED or UNSUSTAINABLE (e.g. parrot fish and grouper in south east Asia, shark meat globally), or are CAUGHT USING UNSUSTAINABLE METHODS (e.g. dynamite fishing).

Download!

Dive professionals have the ability to positively influence diver behaviour: by managing your divers and preventing them from causing damage, you are helping protect coral reefs one dive at a time. Build up your knowledge, skills and confidence in conducting environmentally friendly diving by taking the Green Fins Dive Guide e-Course

Example of environmental content for liability release form

COC 3 27


COC 4: Participate in regular underwater clean-ups at dive operator selected sites

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


This is one way that a

member can make

POSITIVE

ENVIRONMENTAL

Beach and reef clean-up events are a fantastic way to raise awareness to the global issue of marine litter, as well as collect valuable data for widescale monitoring. CROWN-OF-THORN SEA STARS are increasingly becoming a threat to corals on dive sites. Please read the Green Fins COT’s clean-up guidelines before deciding to conduct a clean-up, and follow the guide for all subsequent clean up activities.

Download! Green Fins COTs Cleanup Guidelines

CHANGE

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Aim to organise at least 5 clean-up events each year in your local area and encourage the participation of all staff and customers, as well as local communities in clean-up events.

Fill out and submit clean-up data sheets to assist with global monitoring efforts. This will help improve understanding and management regarding the threat of marine litter.

To help increase participant numbers, some Green Fins members have found success by offering free or discounted dives to customers who want to help with reef clean-ups.

Contribute to the world’s largest clean-up database by completing “Ocean Trash Data Forms” for Ocean Conservancy.

Keep an event log with corresponding dated photographs (or simply upload them onto a company Facebook page and share to the Green Fins Facebook page) to be reviewed by your Green Fins Assessor.

Or join UNEP’s Global Partnership on Marine Litter (GPML).

facebook.com/GreenFins Follow the Green Fins clean-up guidelines and brief participants thoroughly in accordance to these guidelines.

CLICK HERE to download the data form

CLICK HERE to access the official website of GPML

Download! - Green Fins Underwater Clean-up Guidelines - Green Fins Beach clean-up guidelines COC 4 29


COC 5: Participate in the development and implementation of a mooring buoy program, and actively use moorings, drift or hand place anchors for boats

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


IRRESPONSIBLE ANCHORING CAN HAVE DEVASTATING ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES Never anchor on areas with live marine life such as coral reefs, seagrass beds and seaweed beds.

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Install mooring buoys where possible. Offer your support to local relevant authorities, as there may already be a mooring buoy programme locally but resources may be limiting.

COC 5 31


There are companies who can be employed to help with the building and installation of mooring buoys but you can also do it yourself for relatively little cost.

Mend damaged and replace lost moorings wherever possible.

32

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


COC 6: Prohibit the sale of corals and other marine life at the dive operation

COC 6 33


Collection of live and dead marine life for the global marine life souvenir trade is relatively unregulated and targets

SENSITIVE AND ECOLOGICALLY SIGNIFICANT SPECIES. This activity has a seriously negative impact on the marine environment globally.

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

$$$$$

Do not have any marine life on display as decoration, furniture or for educational purposes in any of the operation’s facilities.

DO NOT SELL MARINE LIFE

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If marine life has been used as part of the building structure or design it should be removed if possible. If this is not possible then display a sign to provide education and explain the company’s policy.

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Download! - Green Fins Marine Souvenirs - Green Fins Marine Life Sign

COC 6 35


COC 7: Participate in regular coral reef monitoring, and report coral reef monitoring data to a regional coral reef database

36

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


This is one way that a

The diving and snorkelling industry is very well positioned to collect and report valuable marine life monitoring data. This data will be used by local and global experts to influence decision makers.

member can make

POSITIVE

ENVIRONMENTAL

CHANGE

COC 7 37


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE There are many monitoring programmes that the diving industry can contribute to. Where available, contact your National Green Fins Team to enquire about opportunities in your area.

CLICK HERE to access the Green Fins country pages

Reef Watch is a simple one-dive one-survey monitoring programme developed by Green Fins Thailand for the diving industry. Keep a log of the data you have submitted to the relevant database/s to be reviewed by your Green Fins Assessor.

CLICK HERE to watch the Reef Watch Training in Koh Tao, Thailand

Download! Reef Watch Guidelines

38

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


COC 8: Provide adequate garbage facilities on board facility’s vessels and deal with responsibly

A responsible garbage management policy will ensure businesses reduce the amount of waste being generated, reuse and recycle whenever possible, as well as have clear systems in place to safely collect, store and dispose of waste. COC 8 39


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Ensure BINS are placed in accessible and convenient locations for guests and staff around all company facilities including boats (including any marine toilets). Consider how windy it can be on a boat and make sure waste is secured with a lid once it’s disposed of.

Ensure secure ASHTRAYS are also easily accessible to staff and guests around all facilities including the boat. Once again, remember how windy it can be on the dive boat.

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Ensure guests do not throw anything down a marine toilet by displaying the no toilet paper poster. BRIEF your customers and staff to use the bins and ashtrays and to never discard waste irresponsibly.

Download! - Green Fins Toilet Sign - Green Fins Environmental Briefing Guidelines - Green Fins Environmental Briefing Cards

COC 8 41


Raise awareness to the issue of MARINE DEBRIS by clearly displaying relevant educational posters for guests and staff to see. Use REUSABLE CONTAINERS for lunch, refreshments and drinks and reduce all use of single use plastics such as bottles, cups and straws.

Download! - Green Fins No Plastic - Green Fins Trash Breakdown

You may find an increase in singleuse plastic (e.g. masks, gloves etc) as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Get the guide for environmental considerations during this time.

Download! Green Fins Guidelines: Environmental Best Practice for Chemical Cleaning Agents

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Have a clear system in place to ensure garbage is separated

INTO RECYCLABLES AND NON-RECYCLABLES

(or according to local authority instructions) and disposed of responsibly.

Have a clear system in place to ensure all garbage is REMOVED SAFELY FROM THE BOAT. SUPPORT AND MAKE USE OF ALL LOCAL RECYCLING OPTIONS WHERE AVAILABLE.

COC 8 43


COC 9: Operate under a ‘minimum discharge’ policy for waste

Adopting a minimum discharge policy will ensure businesses release no hazardous chemicals and waste into the marine environment. 44

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Replace all chemical cleaning products with ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY OR BIODEGRADABLE PRODUCTS (for washing boat decks, toilets, kit, etc.). Eco friendly products are widely available to purchase, or you can make your own!

Download! Green Fins Non-Toxic Cleaning Recipe

Disinfection using chemical cleaning agents may be unavoidable during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Get the guide for environmental considerations when dealing with hazardous waste

Download! Green Fins Guidelines: Environmental Best Practice for Chemical Cleaning Agents

COC 9 45


Have a clear system in place to ensure used OIL is SAFELY COLLECTED AND STORED during engine maintenance.

Seek safe disposal options such as gas stations or refuse / junk facilities (who often accept used oil), or recycle where possible (e.g. use to treat wood). Consider efficient transportation systems to minimise fuel usage and waste. Use efficient engines such as FOUR STROKE ENGINES and ensure all equipment is regularly maintained. Ensure processes involved in refuelling do not result in any spillage to the marine environment. Regularly check boat and compressor engines for oil, coolant or fuel leaks. Safely dispose of any compressor or oil filters.

Download! Green Fins Used Oil

46

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Use rechargeable batteries (e.g. for dive torches) where possible, or ensure safe collection, storage and disposal of used batteries where possible.

If this is not an option locally, consider asking guests to take your batteries home with them for safe disposal. If staff wish to take used batteries home for continued use, ensure they are returned once empty to dispose of responsibly.

Download! Green Fins Batteries

COC 9 47


Where available, use facilities to safely pump out holding tank waste for sewage treatment on land. Where not possible, ensure holding tanks are only emptied in the open ocean shallow reef areas or in bays.

INSTALL HOLDING TANKS FOR TOILETS ON BOARD COMPANY VESSELS WHERE POSSIBLE.

Ensure marine toilets which flush directly into the ocean are not used or flushed over dive sites, shallow reef areas on in bays. Ensure regular maintenance of all related equipment such as pipes.

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Ensure all food scraps are collected and brought back to land for disposal. DO NOT THROW OVERBOARD. DO NOT FEED FISH OR OTHER MARINE LIFE.

Download! - Green Fins No Fish Feeding - Green Fins No Fish Feeding- A3

COC 9 49


COC 10: Abide by all local, regional, national and international environmental laws, regulations and customs

50

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


This is one way that a

As natural advocates for the environment, the diving and snorkelling communities can support coastal resource management efforts and law enforcement by promoting and following all laws, regulations and customs.

member can make

POSITIVE

ENVIRONMENTAL

CHANGE

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Where available, contact your NATIONAL GREEN FINS TEAM to learn more about laws, regulations and customs relevant to you and how you can report violations. CLICK HERE to access the Green Fins country pages

If you are not in a Green Fins active location, then contact your LOCAL AUTHORITIES and ask for their help to identify relevant laws, regulations and customs and how you can report violations. Display posters and /or brief your customers and staff on relevant laws, regulations and customs and ensure they follow these at all times.

COC 10 51


COC 11: Provide guests with an explanation of Green Fins ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ in pre-dive briefings (UNEP Multilingual pre-dive briefing handouts, multimedia, posters, videos)

52

Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


Including environmental content in boat and pre-dive briefings is an excellent way of adding value to guest experience by promoting the uniqueness of the dive sites you visit. There is a lot of scientific evidence to show that environmental briefings reduce the chance of direct diver damage to marine life.

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Provide clear guidance in staff training to include environmental content in boat and pre-dive briefings.

COC 11 53


Have the Green Fins briefing aids available on boats and in centres to support staff during briefings and encourage your dive guides to take the Green Fins Dive Guide e-Course

Download! - Green Fins icons - Green Fins Environmental Briefing Guidelines - Green Fins Environmental Briefing Cards - Green Fins Train your staff presentation

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


COC 12:

Provide training, briefings or literature for guests regarding good environmental practices for snorkelling, diving, boating, marine wildlife interaction, and other marine recreation activities

There are many opportunities for company environmental standards to be promoted to staff and guests in a dive or snorkel centre. By clearly outlining and displaying these standards people are more likely to follow them. COC 12 55


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Train staff to follow environmental standards using the Green Fins Train your staff presentation, Green Fins video, The Green Fins Guide and by clearly displaying the Guidelines to the Code of Conduct within business facilities. CLICK HERE to access the complete Green Fins video

Download! - Green Fins Code of ConductEnglish Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct - Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct - Combined

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres

- Green Fins Train your staff presentation - The Green Fins Guide


Provide information on environmental standards for guests by clearly displaying the Guidelines to the Code of Conduct within business facilities, including environmental content in liability release forms.

Conduct CHECK / TEST DIVES as company policy to determine guests’ buoyancy skills, correct weighting and ability underwater. Dive sites should be chosen based on diver’s skills. DO NOT take inexperienced divers to sites where they are likely to come into contact with the reef such as swim throughs, narrow gulleys or gaps or those with strong currents.

Download! Example of environmental content for liability release form

DO NOT overweight divers, this commonly leads to direct diver damage. DO NOT take inexperienced snorkellers onto shallow reef areas. COC 12 57


PROMOTE ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION COURSES e.g. fish ID, ocean ranger, underwater naturalist, underwater ecologist, buoyancy skills, and instructions on use of equipment for new snorkellers.

PROVIDE FURTHER TRAINING FOR STAFF AND GUESTS FOR ACTIVITIES WHERE DAMAGE TO THE ENVIRONMENT IS A HIGH RISK (e.g. clean-up and monitoring activities)

CLICK HERE to watch the Reef Watch Training in Koh Tao, Thailand

Download! Reef Watch Guidelines

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


COC 13: Provide guests with public awareness and environmental materials (books, pamphlets, fish ID books, etc)

Dive and snorkel centres are an ideal hub to raise awareness to local and global environmental concerns and to inspire and empower people to take positive action against these. Be part of the solution by having plenty of awareness and learning materials freely available to your staff and guests which will help inspire a better association with marine life. COC 13 59


TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

DOWNLOAD

as many of the Green Fins (and others)

AWARENESS AND EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS as possible and display them around your dive centre.

Green Fins TOOLKIT

The Green Fins Guide Green Fins Brand Book Green Fins Beach Clean-up Guidelines Green Fins Brochure Green Fins Coastal Clean-up Guidelines for Organisations Green Fins Code of Conduct Green Fins COTs Cleanup Guidelines Green Fins Environmental Briefing Cards Green Fins Environmental Briefing Guidelines Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct – Combined Green Fins Guidelines to the Code of Conduct – Diver Green Fins icons Green Fins Posters Green Fins Membership Form Green Fins Membership Process Flow Chart Green Fins Train your staff presentation Green Fins Underwater Clean-up Guidelines Green Fins Underwater Photography Guidelines Green Fins Wallpapers Reef Watch Guidelines Bag, Flag, Save Our Reef Stickers, Stencil, T-shirts

Have marine life identification books, slates and posters freely available around the dive or snorkel centre / boat and encourage dive staff to use these during briefings before and after entering the water.

Download! ALL the Green Fins awareness and educational materials

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COC 14: Provide guests with information on local marine protected areas, environmental rules and regulations

COC 14 61


This is one way that a

Promoting any local Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) member can make

POSITIVE

will highlight the uniqueness of the local area to your guests as well as support local marine management and protection efforts.

ENVIRONMENTAL

CHANGE

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE Where available, contact your National Green Fins Team to learn more about local MPAs. CLICK HERE to access the GF national pages

If you are not in a Green Fins active location, contact your local authorities and ask for information about local MPAs. Include information on MPA locations on dive maps. Ensure guests and staff are aware of MPA laws and rules in pre-dive briefings or disclaimer forms. Have posters on display on boats or at the dive/snorkel centre on laws and rules associated with local MPA’s.

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COC 15: Promote a strict ‘No touch’ policy for all reef diving and snorkelling

COC 15 63


STEPPING ON OR KICKING CORALS CAN DAMAGE OR KILL IT. Touching marine life can cause it great stress, remove protective coating and transmit disease.

Contact with marine life can also be harmful to divers and snorkellers. Gloves provide people with a FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY and might make them more likely to touch things underwater.

Dive and snorkel centres should operate in ACCORDANCE WITH A NO TOUCH POLICY AT ALL TIMES

TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BEST PRACTICE

Promote no touch and no glove policies through clearly displayed signage.

Promote no touch and no glove policies in boat and dive briefings.

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Green Fins Operational Handbook - Dive and Snorkel Centres


In scenarios where gloves must be used, provide further briefings for responsible use. Train staff to correct customer behaviour underwater before / after contact is made. They can build up their skills, knowledge and confidence by taking the Green Fins Dive Guide e-Course.

COC 15 65


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THANK YOU! We hope that this guide will help you on your journey towards making your business more environmentally sustainable. Your feedback and suggestions are welcome, please contact your Green Fins network on: www.greenfins.net | info@greenfins.net Use this reporting form if you see a Green Fins member who is not following the Code of Conduct DONATE NOW- to help Green Fins grow

Profile for Green Fins

Green Fins Operational Handbook  

This handbook combines all the Green Fins learning material and guides into a one stop shop of practical solutions to every day environmenta...

Green Fins Operational Handbook  

This handbook combines all the Green Fins learning material and guides into a one stop shop of practical solutions to every day environmenta...

Profile for greenfins
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