Monday, 30 June 2008

Dive-Related Jobs Listed on is a scuba career resource dedicated to employers and job seekers alike. We focus on all aspects of the diving industry, not only “fun in the sun” jobs. Diving positions that involve manufacturing, retail, product development, sales, instruction, commercial or government positions are also posted.

If you are a job seeker we have over 100 active employers registered on the site. Many applicants have been successful in finding their next dream diving job through us. Come check us out and see if there is a position for you. You can also post your resume, or sign up for the newsletter to keep abreast of all newly posted jobs. It’s all free, no cost!

If you are an employer looking for a great candidate we have hundreds registered applicants. It’s only $9.99 to post any employment ad. This is a special to celebrate our 1st year anniversary and to say thank you to everyone that helped us get this site started. The candidates you will receive are all certified divers, experienced and initially screened. No bogus resumes or unqualified candidates!

Here are a few of the positions that are currently posted on the site. Click on the job description to take a closer look:


Monterey Bay Aquarium: – Program Instructor - Monterey, CA

The Underwater Explorers Program Instructor will be responsible for delivering Underwater Explorers programs to the public on our outside deck and in the Great Tide Pool. They are the primary response for water safety and rescue of participants while teaching children ages 8-13 about the natural history of our tide pools and ocean.

Other Monterey Bay Aquarium positions:

Underwater Explorers Assistant Supervisor

Underwater Explorers Team Leader

School for Field Studies : Dive Safety Officer – Turks & Caicos

Under the general direction of the Center Director, the Diving Safety Officer/Marine Operations Coordinator (DSO/MOC) is responsible for a variety of support duties associated with SFS/CMRS sponsored academic and scientific activities on and underwater in order to ensure these activities are carried out in an effective and safe manner in accordance with SFS and CMRS specific policies.

For our Land Lubbers

Diversified Clinical Services: Hyperbaric Chamber Technicians – USA, multiple locations

Under the direction of the Technical Director of the Hyperbaric Medicine Department, the Hyperbaric Medical Technician administers hyperbaric oxygen therapy to patients as prescribed by the Hyperbaric Physician. The Hyperbaric Medical Technician operates and maintains the hyperbaric chamber(s) and associated systems and equipment.

Sport Chalet: : Scuba Assistant Buyer – La Canada, CA

An assistant buyer is primarily responsible for assortment planning, product development, selection and promotion, vendor negotiation, gross margin and inventory control, develop store merchandising directives.

Are you an employer looking for great scuba certified candidates?

Click here: - Employers

For more information on please visit us online

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Swimmers' Sunscreen Killing Off Coral

January 29, 2008

The sunscreen that you dutifully slather on before a swim on the beach may be protecting your body—but a new study finds that the chemicals are also killing coral reefs worldwide.

Four commonly found sunscreen ingredients can awaken dormant viruses in the symbiotic algae called zooxanthellae that live inside reef-building coral species.

The chemicals cause the viruses to replicate until their algae hosts explode, spilling viruses into the surrounding seawater, where they can infect neighboring coral communities.

Zooxanthellae provide coral with food energy through photosynthesis and contribute to the organisms' vibrant color. Without them, the coral "bleaches"—turns white—and dies.

"The algae that live in the coral tissue and feed these animals explode or are just released by the tissue, thus leaving naked the skeleton of the coral," said study leader Roberto Danovaro of the Polytechnic University of Marche in Italy.

The researchers estimate that 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of sunscreen wash off swimmers annually in oceans worldwide, and that up to 10 percent of coral reefs are threatened by sunscreen-induced bleaching.

The study appeared online in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Activated Viruses

Danovaro and his team studied the effects of sunscreen exposure on coral samples from reefs in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans.

Even low levels of sunscreen, at or below the typical amount used by swimmers, could activate the algae viruses and completely bleach coral in just four days, the results showed.

Seawater surrounding coral exposed to sunscreen contained up to 15 times more viruses than unexposed samples.

Several brands of popular sunscreens were tested and all had four ingredients in common: paraben, cinnamate, benzophenone, and a camphor derivative.

Full article here: Swimmers' Sunscreen Killing Off Coral

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Tabu waters: Protecting Fiji's Great Sea Reef

Dakuwaqa , the Polynesian shark god, would have heard the ruckus coming from the small village of Naduri in a verdant corner of the Fijian archipelago on the morning of a new beginning.

Ancient fishing chants, many of which hadn't been performed in more than 50 years, and a lavish feast of local delicacies — clams, seaweeds, taro leaves, mangoes, guavas, coconuts and pineapples — were prepared over days for villagers and visitors alike. A pig was roasted, graceful seasea fan dances and fierce spear dances enacted, gifts bestowed, kava drunk, and a whale's tooth passed around for good luck.

All this for the opening of the country's first marine protected area? Yes. That's what a waitui tabu (prohibited zone) is these days, a cause for celebration, especially when it will protect parts of Fiji's Great Sea Reef — the world's third largest barrier reef and home to a staggering array of life, some still unknown to science.

Fiji is leading the pack of coastal nations by committing to the establishment of a network of marine protected areas (MPAs) by 2020. The area, covering 30 per cent of its territorial waters or 39 million hectares, will be the largest system of underwater sanctuaries in the world.

“Protecting the reef will ensure that one of our greatest assets remains intact and continues to be an important part of the traditions, culture and livelihoods of the people of Fiji,” said Etika Rupeni of WWF's South Pacific Office in Fiji. “Marine protected areas the world over are proving to be one of the most effective ways for coastal dwellers to safeguard their dwindling food supplies and preserve precious biodiversity.”

Damsel in distress
Captain James Cook, the 18th century British explorer who mapped the South Pacific, including Fiji, is often referred to as the founder of modern oceanography. Among his many discoveries was a linguistic one, the term “taboo” (or “tabu”) — a word that has traveled as widely as Cook himself and is now used throughout the English-speaking world. It still retains, however, its meaning in Polynesia — a prohibition imposed by social custom.

Waitui tabusI, or prohibited fishing zones, have been set aside in Fiji's Great Sea Reef to conserve the most diverse amount of species and habitats as possible. Covering more than 200,000km2, the reef — locally known as Cakaulevu — is home to thousands of marine species, including marine turtles, dolphins, sharks, and 43 new hard coral species. The reef is also an important fishing ground for local communities.

“If you see this place, you would consider yourself the luckiest person on Earth,” said marine biologist Aaron Jenkins, who dives regularly in the Great Sea Reef and is still awed by its extraordinary diversity of life. “The colours, the fish and coral, and most of all, what we still don't know about it, are amazing.”

During a 12-day survey of the reef undertaken by WWF and its partners at the end of 2004, the team found a species of damsel fish (Pomacentrus sp.) previously unknown to science, as well as 12 threatened species, including 10 species of fish, green turtles and spinner dolphins. The survey also identified significant threats to the Great Sea Reef, such as overfishing and poaching by illegal fishers, poison fishing, sand dredging, and other development activities.

In efforts to protect the fragile environment, local village chiefs in Fiji have launched the first of the reef's network of marine protected areas.

“It is important to look at a wider scale of management by capturing the interactions between a range of sites, protecting migratory corridors of more mobile species and maintaining ecological processes,” said Jenkins, the survey's chief scientist.

“Marine protected areas are crucial. They are about preserving the integrity of the wider marine environment across connected systems.”

Protecting tabu areas
In a country where the abiding principle of veisolisoli and kerekere (give and take) is woven into the fabric of society, the concept of marine stewardship is considered common sense. But, years of overfishing, pollution, and destructive harvesting of live coral and exotic fish have eroded Fiji's underwater paradise.

This is in addition to the plundering of Fiji's genetic resources where important plant and marine species are being ripped out of the ground and sea for the highly profitable cosmetic, pharmaceutical, agriculture and biotechnology industries — often without the consent of local resource owners.

Efforts, however, are being made to reign in the free-for-all.

The creation of locally managed marine areas (LMMAs) are empowering coastal communities to take matters into their own hands. The Fiji LMMA drives community-based marine conservation by working closely with 40 traditional fishing grounds (qoliqoli). To date, there are 109 LMMA sites in Fiji, covering about 15 per cent of the country's coastal areas. Witnessing the positive impacts LMMAs are having on local livelihoods, more and more communities are clamoring to establish similar programmes.

The benefits of combining traditional and scientific knowledge and methods can be seen in one of the originating communities of this quiet revolution. The residents of Ucunivanua in Fiji's Verata district, for example, can attest to the benefits of such locally managed areas. Lamenting the decline in the numbers of kaikoso (ark clams) — a key source of food and a marketable commodity — the community decided to take action by reviving tabu practices to protect breeding areas. As a result, clam populations have increased 300 per cent annually in these areas, and by 200 per cent in spillover areas. Incomes over three years have risen by 35 per cent.

“The fish in my protected area are so tame when you dive down to count them they wink at you,” said one local Fijian fisherman jokingly.

“The underwater residents of my protected area are so happy that they practically flop themselves into the boat, said another.”

Replenishing waters for future generations
A notable initiative from Verata is a bio-prospecting arrangement with a pharmaceutical company which has seen US$30,000 put into a trust fund to sustain local conservation work. Another community is managing its coral reefs and generating income by sustainably collecting “live rock” (dead coral or rock covered with algae that is used in aquariums to form a reef base for tropical fish) for the marine aquarium trade.

The Verata initiative and other projects have since merged to share information and resources in a Fiji-wide network of community representatives and NGOs, of which WWF was a founding member.

“The network story is truly an outstanding one, demonstrating how local communities, NGOs and the government can work together to improve livelihoods and protect one's natural heritage, and indeed, a nation,” said WWF International President Chief Emeka Anyaoku, who presented the government of Fiji and local communities with WWF's Conservation Leadership Award.

“As a small island state we are equipped with a special sensitivity that makes us keenly aware of environmental changes,” added Fiji's Fisheries Minister Konisi Tabu Yabaki. “We, just like our forefathers, know that if we do not maintain the health of our environment, our way of life will be threatened. Waitui tabu simply makes sense.”

WWF is working in the world's most sensitive and biologically diverse regions to help protect ocean habitat and support commercial fisheries. The global conservation organization is establishing individual marine protected areas and ensuring that they are supported by local people so that they can be managed effectively. Each park fits into a network of protected areas that represents the diversity of habitats within a given marine ecological region.

“The community is grateful for the support,” said Chief Ratu Aisea Katonivere of Macuata Province. “We hope it will begin the journey to bring back the richness of these once plentiful waters, not only for ourselves, but also for our children.”

Source: WWF

Monday, 23 June 2008

Divers Alert Network (DAN) celebrates its 25th anniversary

DAN Divers Day in Graz, Austria on September 7th 2008.

In 2008 Divers Alert Network (DAN) celebrates its 25th anniversary.

For this reason, DAN Europe is happy to announce a DAN Divers Day in Graz, Austria, a full-day event offered free of charge to attendees. The goal of DAN Divers Days has always been to address safer diving through education with DAN.

Speakers for this event are internationally known DAN area directors and DAN diving medicine experts. They will present dive safety, diving medicine, and other dive-related topics of interest to the scuba diving community in the main auditorium at the Graz University Hospital.

Lectures will be given in English (probably with simultaneously translation into German and also into Italian).
DAN Europe invites all recreational divers, dive guides, diving instructors, search and rescue personnel, underwater photographers, diving physicians and other interested individuals to attend.

Though the participation in the DAN Divers Day is free of charge, we ask for registration.

Preliminary topics:

Fitness to Dive: PFO and obstructive lung diseases – what’s new ?
* The Economy of Decompression: do deep stops make diving profiles safer ?
* The Economy of Decompression: can certain physiological factors and medicaments improve recreational diving safety ?
* Flying After Diving: is it still a problem ?
* Women and Diving: an update
* Children and Diving: do we need a different approach ?
A detailed program and online application form will be published soon.

Participation in the DAN Divers Day is free of charge, but registration will be required (not open yet)

Kind regards,
Your DAN Europe team

The key mission of DAN Europe is to make diving ever safer.
Knowing the diving safety rules and keeping constantly updated about the most recent advances is a must for every professional as well as recreational diver.

This is why DAN Europe has started a regular e-mail information service on diving safety and medical meetings.

Depending on the characteristics of each single event, DAN Europe will either inform the divers in the interested geographical or linguistic regions, or the information will be provided nationally and internationally.

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Exploring Fiji's underwater world Sunset

Exploring Fiji's underwater world Sunset - Find Articles:

Sunset, May, 1990

Rapidly gaining fame as one of the South Pacific's top diving and snorkeling spots, Fiji offers many lures to its diverse underwater world of coral gardens and reef fish. People are drawn to these islands by the proximity of barrier reefs to resorts with dive facilities--as well as the friendly, English-speaking people; the landscape's lush tropical beauty; and frequent air service from the U.S. Their nearness to shore is just one of the reef's virtues.

Great Sea Reef, off the north coast of Vanua Levu, is one of the world's largest, and Astrolabe Reef, north of Kandavu, one of the most colorful. The water is warm, and conditions are good year-round. Snorkeling or diving, you'll see hundreds of species of fish, including manta rays, batfish, moray eels, barracuda, whitetip shark--though you'll have a better chance of seeing larger fish if you dive.

Abundant soft and hard corals explode in a riot of reds, oranges, yellows, purples, and glowing neon hues. Over the past few years, several dive operations have set up around Fiji; all offer top-quality rental equipment, and expert instruction and guiding."

Friday, 20 June 2008

Fiji Scuba Diving - About Scuba Diving in Fiji

Fiji Scuba Diving - About Scuba Diving in Fiji

Fiji Scuba Diving Information

Fiji is famous for its beautiful terrain, tranquil sunsets, clear waters, and it's rainbow medley of soft coral. This tropical paradise has rightfully earned the nickname: 'Soft Coral Capital of the World'. No wonder snorkeling and scuba diving are popular throughout Fiji.

While diving Fiji, you'll discover over four hundred species of coral. The most famous being Dendronepthya Klunzingeri, which comes in a kaleidoscope of colors. The coral is found on reefs with moderate to strong currents and at deeper depths. With over 330 islands and 76,000 square miles of ocean, there's an abundance of coral environments for your enjoyment. You'll find drop-offs, swim-throughs, fissures, coral gardens, and the spine and groove type reefs."

Wednesday, 18 June 2008 | Listing | Essential Digital Download | Bali 11-17 August 2007

Essential Digital Download | Bali 11-17 August 2007

"The Essential Digital Download program is designed to fast track your digital photographic skill, empowering you with techniques to produce artistically pleasing and technically correct images. The six day program is challenging, fun and your results measurable by the quality of your graduation portfolio. Digital Download includes daily lesson modules on the techniques of successful Underwater Photography, from the basics of lighting, to advanced composition and essential elements of post editing using Photoshop and various tested software to create multi-media presentations. Though the program schedule allows for maximum shooting time, the lesson modules, formal and informal critique sessions ensure participants with essential techniques to acquire publishable images.

The Download Instructors: this is your chance to learn from the PRO

Michael AW : author Essential Guide to Digital Underwater Photography, 2 times winner BBC Natural History Museum Wildlife Photographer, 3 times winner Antibes World Festival of Underwater Pictures, 3 times winner Nikon International Photographic competition.

Mathieu Meur: author Essential Guide to Digital Underwater Photography, author of PADI Digital Underwater Photographer distinctive specialty, jury member - CMAS World Championship of Underwater Photography"

Monday, 16 June 2008

Scuba Diving Vacations - Where to Vacation and Scuba Dive

Scuba Diving Vacations - Where to Vacation and Scuba Dive

"Top Places to Scuba Dive while on Vacation

Scuba diving vacation spots aren't hard to find. So, you've thought about taking a dive vacation, and you're having a hard time picking a scuba diving vacation spot. It isn't easy, with all the wonderful places to scuba dive and vacation at the same time. To make your decision a little easier, consider one of these locations.


#2 Fiji
Taveuni is probably the most preferred island for diving in Fiji, but there is no shortage of dive spots. Fiji is nicknamed "Soft Coral Capital of the World" because of the famous soft coral that thrives in the region. Naturally, the coral grows in strong current areas, so you should be thoroughly comfortable diving in those conditions. The Great White Wall is a thrilling attraction. Not only will you discover soft corals here; you'll also see tropical fish such as butterfly fish, parrot fish, and unicorn fish."

Saturday, 14 June 2008

Pilot whales are the sprinters of the deep - life - 14 May 2008 - New Scientist

Pilot whales are the cheetahs of the oceans, focusing their hunting effort on short, intense chases after a few rich food items. They are the first deep-diving whales known to follow such a strategy.

Whales such as sperm whales and beaked whales, which feed during deep dives that take them hundreds of metres below the surface, have to find and capture prey while holding their breath.

Until now, biologists had assumed that all deep-diving whales would cruise slowly and graze on slow-moving prey items while underwater, since this minimises their energy expenditure.

Using this strategy, most deep-diving whales can spend nearly an hour at a time underwater. Pilot whales, however, are the exception – their dives last no more than 15 to 20 minutes.

To find out why, Peter Tyack of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, US, and his colleagues suction-cupped data recorders to 23 short-finned pilot whales off Tenerife in the Canary Islands. During the few hours the recorders stuck to the whales, they logged sound and movement for a total of 59 dives to more than 500 metres depth.

Nutritious reward

Near the bottom of most, but not all, of these dives, the recordings showed that whales made a sudden sprint of 30 seconds or less, accompanied by a furious burst of echolocation clicks, which usually signals a nearby prey item.

The researchers calculated that this short sprint consumes, on average, about 22% of the entire oxygen use for the dive, during just 3% of its duration – a huge cost for a breath-holding animal to pay.

Such a cost would need a large potential payoff. "They look like they are going after big, nutritionally rich prey," says Tyack.

The researchers are not sure exactly what the whales were eating on the dives they measured, but other studies have found large, muscular – and hence, especially nutritious – squid in the stomachs of pilot whales.

Journal reference: Journal of Animal Ecology (DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01393.x)

Pilot whales are the sprinters of the deep - life - 14 May 2008 - New Scientist

Friday, 13 June 2008

Scuba Gear Review » Aqua Lung Legend

Aqua Lung Legend LX/ACD/Supreme Review from Scuba Review

Aqua Lung Legend LX ACD

Aqua Lung’s top of the line regulator series is the Aqualung Legend. This regulator comes in a few different variations. There is the Aqualung Legend, the Aqua Lung Legend LX, and The Aqualung Legend Supreme. Each one of this regulators also comes with an ACD option. ACD stands for Auto Closure Device. This is a very neat feature that closes the inlet fitting of the first stage (both on YOKE and DIN) as soon as the regulator is disconnected from the cylinder valve. This feature presents a few advantages:

  • It keeps water and contaminants out of the regulator’s first stage during rinsing and storage.
  • It allows the first stage to maintain peak performance over time.
  • The first stage will retain its internal lubrication for longer.
  • It Makes the first stage safer for Nitrox use.

All of the regulator in the Legend series use over-balanced diaphragm first stage with a dry seal environmental kit. The over-balance feature allows the intermediate pressure in the hose to increase at a rate faster than ambient pressure, resulting in more responsive inhalation.

The first stage has two high-pressure (HP) ports and four low-pressure (LP) ports. The ports are aligned and angled for optimum hose routing.

The second stage is also pneumatically balanced. It comes with Vane Adjustment Switches (VAS). The difference between the standard version and the LX version is that the LX versions come with a breathing-resistance knob that allows you to dial in or out on your inhalation effort at depth. Performance wise, these regulators are identical.

The second stage also comes in a yellow Octopus Version, here it is:

Aqualung Legend Octopus

All of the Aqua Lung Legend models allow you to choose between a Comfo-Bite or a standard mouthpiece. The Legend Supreme and Supreme LX are considered to be the cold water versions of the regulator. They include a rubber shield that fits over the mouthpiece to keep lips warm. Most divers agree that this is very effective and really does keep the lips warmer than usual.

These regulators offer really great performance in various conditions and very easy breathing. They are also very easy to adjust. Scuba Diving Magazine gave this regulators a Simulator Score of 25 out of possible 25.

Here is a simple explanation on how the ACD feature works:

Aqua Lung ACD Feature

When the regulator is off of the scuba cylinder, spring pressure forces the inlet crown upwards against head of the center valve post effectively sealing the regulator closed. This prevents contaminants and moisture from entering the first stage.

When the regulator is clamped onto the scuba cylinder, the inlet crown retracts thereby exposing the gas inlet in the center valve post. This provides a steady flow of breathing gas to the first stage without any restrictions.

AquaLung ACD Feature

This is the link to the manufacturer.

Scuba Review » Aqua Lung Legend


The adventurous urge of three humble NAI'A passengers initiated and inspired what is now the world's largest marine protected area. Thanks to the generous funding and tireless participation of Arizona's Kandy Kendall, Iowa's Bruce Thayer and California's Mary Jane Adams, NAI'A's first exploratory diving survey to Kiribati's Phoenix Islands archipelago in 2000 led to the sensational declaration last January of 410,500 square kilometers of conservation boundary around them– that's larger than Australia's Great Barrier Reef. We are more thrilled and grateful to these three individuals than words can properly express.

Kandy Kendall
Bruce Thayer
Conservation catalysts - Kandy Kendall and Bruce Thayer.

The Phoenix Islands Protected Area, or PIPA as it is commonly known, has grabbed mainstream media headlines all year in a brilliant coup for global marine protection boldly staged by one of the smallest, most threatened nations on the planet: The Republic of Kiribati. The details of the MPA are presented at

You may have already heard about the tenacious pursuit of the MPA by New England Aquarium's Dr Greg Stone and his team of scientists, the crucial endowment deal closed by Conservation International and the awarded environmental foresight of Kiribati President, Honorable Anote Tong. Phoenix's eight atolls and surrounding deep ocean are highlighted by National Geographic and nominated for World Heritage status. Probably you have read in NAI'A newsletters about our many expeditions there since 1997, first with TIGHAR looking for Amelia Earhart's remains, and then with divers and biologists completing the first underwater surveys. NAI'A is the only vessel with an intimate knowledge of this remarkable but remote coral archipelago.

But what most people don't know is that a handful of the most dedicated NAI'A divers started the whole PIPA ball rolling. Without their exploratory vision and trust in us, the Phoenix Islands would still be unheard of and exploited. Thank you, Kandy, Bruce and Mary Jane. You genuinely embody the famous words of anthropologist, Margaret Mead:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

It began almost accidentally when Rob and Cat briefly glimpsed the overwhelmingly abundant fishlife of Nikumaroro while setting moorings during NAI'A's first Amelia Earhart search expedition with TIGHAR. The experience kept them awake at night for a couple of years until our friend and many-time NAI'A guest Kandy Kendall said,

I want to do something new and brave with NAI'A. Is there anywhere left to truly explore?

Kandy's substantial start-up funding of our goal to put marine scientists and experienced sport divers together to survey under the Phoenix Islands made our first 21-day excursion possible. Bruce Thayer and Mary Jane Adams leapt at the opportunity too, sponsoring and assisting the final three expert biologists of the survey team. Then Dr Craig Cook brought not only his diving knowledge but also his emergency medical skills to the party of explorers. And finally, Australian cameraman, Alex Morrison, donated his time and steady film-eye to document the expedition topside.

Watch the short film made about the PIPA project or read the Skin Diver magazine feature about the journey, Sharks on Prozac, Coral on Steriods.

Mary Jane summed up Phoenix 2000 beautifully:

It was an unforgettable experience and a major highlight of my 25 years of diving. When I signed up for the project, I hoped that we would discover at least a few good dive sites. The Phoenix Islands expedition exceeded my most optimistic expectations. Diving with New England Aquarium biologists greatly enriched my understanding of tropical reefs and their inhabitants. If I ever get this kind opportunity again I will grab it.

Mary Jane also joined NAI'A as reef invertebrate researcher for the 2002 Primal Ocean Project survey led this time by the now deeply committed New England Aquarium and Conservation International scientists and covered in National Geographic. Dr Greg Stone seized the baton of protection for Phoenix and ran with it. His energy, diplomacy and colleagues quickly transformed that hopeful NAI'A discovery tour into a ground-breaking global conservation vision which culminated in the 2006 declaration of PIPA and this year's expansion of the preservation zone to be the world's largest. It grew beyond our wildest dreams, as Bruce Thayer eloquently expresses.

It's been a long road? But my role in Phoenix is turning out to be one of the absolute high points of my life; a singular something that will be left behind when I've burped my final bubble.

We hope to do it all again in Central Fiji/Lomaiviti where, just as NAI'A divers discovered in Phoenix, something extraordinary is going on under the surface.

FIHTA Dive Fiji EXPO 2008 pics

Bula All,

Here's a couple of pics taken by Lorraine Evans of Scubahire from last week's FIHTA Dive Fiji EXPO 2008.

Andrew and Tui from Ratu Kini's Dive Centre on Mana.

Stuart Gow from Matava and Aaron McGrath (the host of the event) of Sonaisali Island Resort.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Waitabu Marine Park : Coral Reef Alliance

Our Projects | Waitabu Marine Park: Coral Reef Alliance

In 1998, the residents of Waitabu Village designated a significant portion of their Qoliqoli, or traditional fishing grounds, as a no-take zone, thus creating one of the first marine protected areas in Fiji. With the dedication of local community leaders in partnership with CORAL and other non-governmental organizations, the Waitabu Marine Park celebrated ten years of healthy coral reefs in 2008.

Most recently, CORAL provided a microgrant to Waitabu Marine Park to purchase twenty brand-new masks and snorkels for the snorkel tourism business from which the park earns the bulk of its yearly income. And in an effort to increase camping tourism within the marine park, CORAL provided funds to purchase a lawn mower that park leaders will use to keep camping areas safe and well groomed.

Fiji field representative Sirilo “Didi” Dulunaqio was joined by field representative Heidi Williams in 2007, allowing CORAL staff to meet regularly with dive operators, the local community, and other stakeholders to develop customized training and materials for the region.

Our Projects | Waitabu Marine Park: Coral Reef Alliance

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Fiji - Scuba Diving Magazine

"Brilliant soft corals may be Fiji's signature dive attraction, but there's much more to the underwater story here. With more than 320 islands to choose from, divers never run out of options. The largest island of Viti Levu offers easy access to the widest range of sites (including the world-famous Beqa Lagoon and the shark encounters off Pacific Harbour) and has the most extensive diving infrastructure. Vanua Levu and Taveuni, to the north, feature otherworldly walls of snowy soft coral. And the smaller islands of the Yasawas, the Lau Group, the Mamanucas, the Lomaivitis and Kadavu each have a distinct underwater appeal. Acres of plate and staghorn corals have colonized the Yasawas and Mamanucas, considered to have some of the best vis in all Fiji. The bommies off the outer Lomaivitis are known for pelagics drawn to their shoals of baitfish, and the Great Astrolabe Reef of Kadavu is a top spot for big animal encounters."

Leading Conservation Organizations Join Forces for Coral Reefs

Project AWARE and Reef Check partner for global reef protection.

Two top nonprofit conservation organizations, Project AWARE Foundation and Reef Check Foundation, have formally partnered with one mutual goal - to protect coral reefs around the world.

Project AWARE and Reef Check both rely on dedicated volunteer divers to collect relevant data for their monitoring programs. Project AWARE’s CoralWatch monitoring, implemented in partnership with the University of Queensland, Australia in 2005, collects information on the intensity of coral bleaching and recovery. Since 1997, Reef Check has carried out an annual global scientific survey of human impacts on coral reefs. Project AWARE and Reef Check would like to encourage all divers to volunteer for these programs and help track the condition of coral reefs.

“The joint efforts of Project AWARE and Reef Check aim to boost public awareness and action for critical conservation initiatives,” said Project AWARE Foundation, Director, Jenny Miller Garmendia. “Volunteer divers are at the core of these monitoring programs and are natural advocates for declining underwater ecosystems.”

The partnership was announced at the launch of the year-long International Year of the Reef 2008 campaign in Washington, DC this week.

According to Dr. Gregor Hodgson, Founder and Executive Director, Reef Check, “Reef Check is very pleased to be partnering with Project AWARE because we share the same goals of involving more volunteer divers in coral reef monitoring and conservation. All of the data gathered will be used to interpret trends in global coral status.”


Project AWARE Foundation, a registered nonprofit organization, is dedicated to conserving underwater environments through education, advocacy and action. For more than 16 years, Project AWARE has worked in direct partnership with divers and water enthusiasts to protect aquatic resources in 175 countries and territories of the world.

Reef Check Foundation is an international non-profit organization dedicated to conservation of two ecosystems: tropical coral reefs and California rocky reefs. With headquarters in Los Angeles and volunteer teams in more than 90 countries, Reef Check’s mission is to protect and rehabilitate reefs worldwide.

Monday, 9 June 2008

White House Unveils Plans to Address Trash in the Ocean

White House Unveils Plans to Address Trash in the Ocean

Initiative Boosts Project AWARE's Long-Standing International Cleanup Day Efforts

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA Project AWARE Foundation and partner environmental organizations applauded First Lady Laura Bush’s unveiling of a new initiative to address marine debris.

The First Lady called for an increase in public/private partnerships for cleanups, enhanced public education on marine debris prevention and an emphasis on international cooperation during the dedication ceremony of the J.L. Scott Marine Education Center-Gulf Coast Research Laboratory in Biloxi, Mississippi, USA.

“Whether we live on the shore or not, all of us have the obligation to care for these amazing natural resources,” stated Mrs. Bush.

The First Lady has championed marine debris prevention since seeing the extent of the problem during a visit to the remote Northwest Hawaiian Islands National Monument. She spoke about the importance of the ocean environment, promising to promote annual cleanups and make sure people are educated about marine debris and how to participate in solutions.

Vikki Spruill, President and CEO of the Ocean Conservancy, Project AWARE’s partner for International Cleanup Day, spoke before the First Lady last week and shined a spotlight on marine debris issues and the international cleanup efforts taking place each year.

“The First Lady’s dedication to the issues we’ve been fighting for is inspiring – and, it gives a big push to the sea change that is underway,” states Vikki Spruill, Ocean Conservancy President and CEO.

“We’re thrilled about the new White House plan to address trash in our oceans,” said Jenny Miller Garmendia, Director, Project AWARE Foundation. “The announcement boosts Project AWARE’s 12-year underwater volunteer effort to remove and prevent harmful aquatic debris – a human-induced and preventable problem.”

Each year Project AWARE Foundation coordinates underwater cleanups in more than 100 countries and territories in partnership with dive professionals and the Ocean Conservancy. Cleanup volunteers are making a difference by improving aquatic environments and protecting fragile wildlife.

Project AWARE Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving underwater environments through education, advocacy and action. Visit for more information about Project AWARE’s ongoing debris removal efforts, to volunteer or to view inspiring images from cleanup events around the world.

Material posted and distributed through DiveNewswire

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Welcome to My Fiji

Its as if Pieces of Heaven Have Dropped from the Sky
by Jack and Sue Drafahl
Now, open your eyes and see your dream become reality. Welcome to Fiji! Scattered over the South Pacific, its 330 islands are welcoming more and more dive travelers every year. Once they find Fiji, it becomes embedded in their souls and they have an insatiable desire to return. One of the main reasons this happens is the people: they are truly the friendliest on earth. Moments after you arrive in Nadi Airport you will be offered a smile and the Fijian greeting of bula. Simply return the greeting by repeating bula and your life will be changed forever.

Fiji is 17 degrees south of the equator, just northeast of Australia and west of the International Dateline. The largest island, Viti Levu, is home to the largest portion of Fiji's 780,000 people. The official language is English and although Fiji has its own currency, the U.S. dollar is accepted everywhere. Because Fiji is south of the equator, its summer is November to March; winter is April to October. Summer temperatures average 86F; the winter average is 73. Cooling trade winds make even the warmest day comfortable.

Accommodations throughout Fiji vary from luxury hotels with golf courses to comfortable resorts offering thatched roof Fijian cottages called bures. You can find inexpensive backpacking locales and resorts that offer affordable luxury. Fiji has something to satisfy every pocketbook.

The diving in this South Pacific paradise is as varied as the resorts and the topography. You will find calm, shallow diving inside many of the island lagoons and deeper wall diving where the intertidal currents pass among the islands. During this exchange of water the reefs are alive with soft corals of every color in full bloom. Although we hope you never see it, the Fiji Dive Operators Association has also established an hyperbaric chamber in Suva.

While Fiji is noted for its world-class diving, it also offers a fascinating blend of culture and customs. To truly enjoy Fiji, you must experience the customs that make these people unique. Many Fijians live in villages where the philosophy is care and share. No visitor is a stranger for long because these people immediately make you one of their family.

Fiji's Regions: Fiji's diving is divided into the northern section, encompassing Savusavu, Vanua Levu and the islands of Namenalala, Taveuni, Laucala, Matagi and Qamea. The central and southern sections cover Vatulele, Kadavu, Beqa and the Coral Coast. The western region features the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands. Follow us as we introduce you to some of the finest diving in the world.

Read whole article...

Nai'a offers great deal!


Due to a last-minute cancellation, Nai'a suddenly has six available spaces remaining on their 2008 Tonga Humpback Whale Safari and can discount them by 25%. The berths are available on the July 18-28 trip. And for something completely different, you can stay on in the Kingdom of Tonga to join the country's biggest ever celebration: the coronation of the new King. How often do you get a travel opportunity like that?

Check out Nai'a's Tonga Humpback Whale Safaris and email or call them right away to reserve your place among the gentle giants.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

In China, Corporations Cultivate Profits and Conscience

BEIJING -- Coca-Cola will revamp bottling practices globally to save water and fund conservation along the Yangtze River and other major waterways, highlighting a growing emphasis on social and environmental spending by multinationals in China.

Under the program, Coca-Cola Co. intends to offset some of the 76 billion gallons of water _ a two-month supply of drinking water for New York City _ that the world's largest beverage maker and its bottlers use each year to make Coke, Sprite, Fanta and other drinks.

The company said it will reduce the amount of water used to rinse, clean, heat, and cool during the manufacturing process. The company also plans to recycle factory wastewater.

"Essentially the pledge is to return every drop we use back to nature," Coca-Cola Chief Executive Officer E. Neville Isdell said in Beijing.

"We need to think holistically about the availability of water for the ongoing sustainability of our business," Isdell said.

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola pledged $20 million for the World Wildlife Foundation to protect sections of major rivers in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia, including China's badly polluted Yangtze, the world's third longest.

Coca-Cola's sales by volume have seen double digit growth in China over the past few years and the mainland is now the company's fourth-largest market.

Coca-Cola has joined a wave of global corporations funding social projects outside their business investments across China.

As China becomes an ever more important market and manufacturing base, many multinationals are under growing pressure in the Chinese media to show they're doing in China than taking profits.

There is also pressure at home. Shareholders questioned Isdell directly about Coca-Cola's global water usage during the annual shareholder meeting in April.

Projects funded by multinationals in China run the gamut from "planting a few trees by the Great Wall" to significantly reducing carbon emissions, said Elizabeth Knup, who heads the corporate social responsibility committee for the American Chamber of Commerce in Beijing.

She said the spending in China on corporate social responsibility is difficult to calculate. Different companies consider compliance with environment or labor standards a measure of their social responsibility while others tout charity, sponsorship programs or industrial training courses.

Either way, media attention in China is focused increasingly on major corporations and their practices.

Over the past year, Western icons such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Yum Brands Inc.'s KFC and Pizza Hut have been pilloried in Chinese media for alleged unfair or predatory practices.

Other companies have recognized that socially conscious projects can tip the scales when they compete for government contracts and licenses, Knup said.

United Technologies Corp. plans to open a 'green' elevator factory in the eastern city of Tianjin in July and has worked with the Ministry of Construction on developing better environmental standards for government buildings.

The projects help to promote UTC's subsidiaries like Carrier, which makes air conditioning units, and Otis, an elevator manufacturer, said Jim Gradoville, president of UTC's international operations in China.

Carrier landed a contract to provide air conditioning equipment for 70 percent of the venues for next year's Olympics in Beijing because the company led competitors in phasing out ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons, Gradoville said.

China's leaders were once leery of campaigns by foreign campaigns or groups to improve local environmental or labor conditions, believing they undermined domestic companies that had neither the financial or human resources to compete.

Recently, however, under the slogan "building a harmonious society," the government has embraced corporate social responsibility for foreign and Chinese companies alike.

One Chinese activist group launched a campaign this year to publicize companies that violate environmental or labor standards. Ma Jun, the head of the Beijing-based Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, said he hoped the campaign would shame offenders and drive up the costs for violators through consumer boycotts.

Source: Associated Press

Bune Launches Environment Week

(Fiji Government Online)
The Minister of Environment Poseci Bune today officially launched the National Environment Week (June 5 – 10) in Sigatoka.

In his address, the honorable Minister said “this is my first obligation since becoming the first Minister of Environment and I have been advised that it will not be the last since the promotional activities for the protection of our natural environment have been scheduled throughout the rest of 2006 and as a matter of fact the campaigns for protecting and conserving Fiji’s environment should be on going into the future.”

Mr Bune said Fiji is very fortunate to be part of the United Nations and also being part of various international and regional environmental agreements or conventions and their related protocols which allows us to be part of the global environmental programs.

He said for the various agreements to succeed, it requires the effort of the government, the private sector, academic institutions and local communities.

However, “this calls for the setting aside of differences we have at all levels that is economic, social and even political levels so that the appropriate resources and efforts are channeled during this week towards the protection of Fiji’s natural environment week.”

Fiji now has a legislation in the Environment Management Act of 2005 to establish guiding regulations and standards to comply with and the deterrent penalties for not complying.

Furthermore, the Environment Ministry is putting into place the strategies that would control the generation, use, storage and disposal of all types of waste. Associated with this is the determination of the the appropriate levels of adverse impacts of new development activities on the environment.

The theme for this year’s National Environment Week is “Right to Life” and the sub theme is “The Survival of each species of plants and animals is the only insurance for our own survival.”

Mr Bune said this would set the direction of our thoughts and deeds during this week and hopefully for the rest of the year.

Pacific Magazine: FIJI: Bune Launches Environment Week