In April this year, Mona and I had the pleasure of diving with our friends and dive buddies Rob and Susie at Magic Oceans Dive Resort on Bohol in the Philippines. This is a place that has received loads of press of late. Check out our Trip Report here and a blog posts by Nick and Caroline Robertson-Brown for Scubaverse here. It is well-deserved press, but we’d like to cover it from a slightly different angle.
Firstly, it is safe to say that this was the very best diving we have ever done, and we are no strangers to scuba travels. The waters were immaculate – not a single bit of flotsam or jetsam that shouldn’t have been there, and therefore, very, very healthy reefs that are full to bursting with marine life.
Sitting with our friends at meals we were inspired as they refused the plastic straws that were provided with drinks and other guests started to do the same. Later in the week, we found ourselves deep in conversation with Eef and Arie of Magic Resorts discussing the impact of single use plastics and what they might be able to do to help the effort. I doubt that we are the only ones that have seen the video of the turtle having the straw removed from its nostril.
The conversation turned to solutions for the “straw issue.” We have seen pasta replacements, but these taste funny. Paper straws go soggy, and use trees. The glass ones could be dangerous. Then there are bamboo ones, silicone and acrylic. Eef and Arie were excited at the options and went straight to work. As we’re writing this, Magic Island Dive Resort is using reusable silicone straws and Magic Oceans is providing guests with stainless steel straws. And Nick shared with us that other resorts and local establishments in the Philippines are doing the same!
Mona and I were spurred into further action – we have been evaluating various branded ‘gifts’ for some time, but could not decide completely on one single object. We wanted something useful, and really wanted something that would have a positive environmental effect too.
We have now made our decision! The Scuba Place will be providing every client that books a trip with or through us with a BPA-free, aluminium water bottle, complete with carabiner clip and screw top lid. We hope that our clients will find them useful and that it might help to reduce the amount of plastics ending up in the oceans.
Surprisingly picking a reusable water bottle was more difficult than we expected. So many vendors use plastic bags as packaging and we don’t want those blowing overboard into the sea! We’re delighted with our final selection and can’t wait to see them on dive boats around the globe. Our next hosted ‘Come Dive With Us’ trip is to Jardines de La Reina in Cuba this coming September (spaces available!) and we’ll be taking some of our bottles out for the dive staff.
We are pleased to be doing our bit for our Oceans – Come Dive with Us!