PATA has partnered the Reef-World Foundation.
As part of the agreement, PATA has
endorsed Reef-World and Green Fins, a management approach to promote and measure compliance to an
environmental code of conduct for sustainable diving and snorkelling activities for destinations, dive operators and
related ancillary products and services.
PATA members will also
have access to relevant information that relates specifically to
diving, snorkeling and marine tourism.
Reef-World Operations Manager, James Harvey,
said, “At Reef-World we strive to ensure simple and practical
guidance to environmental best practice for scuba diving and
snorkeling activities is freely available to everyone, regardless
of business size, location or language spoken. Through this
exciting partnership with PATA, and using the Green Fins
management approach, we will be able to extend the reach of Green
Fins to more businesses managers and owners.”
Reef-World began in 1993
with a series of programmes educating local communities in
Thailand on the sustainable use of marine resources. Since then,
Reef-World has been focusing on education within coastal
communities, with an interest in sustainable dive and snorkel
tourism, initially focused in Southeast Asia and now globally.
Reef-World originally established Green Fins through a partnership
with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 2004.
Today, Green Fins represents the world’s only UNEP recognised
international environmental standards for scuba diving and
snorkeling activities and the only approach to combine these
standards with performance assessment. It’s an inventive model for
working with the private and public sectors to inspire industry
led actions for the protection and conservation of coral reefs.
“Concerns are growing about marine tourism conservation
issues. I believe that this is a developing area of interest for
many PATA members including island and archipelago states across
Southeast Asia and many private sector businesses,” said PATA CEO
Mario Hardy. “We look forward to gaining insights about
Reef-World’s monitoring of best practices of the diving and
snorkeling tourism industry internationally through Green Fins.
This partnership means that PATA members now have improved access
to knowledge that can help us make a real difference, at the
grassroots level, on a wide range of marine tourism issues.”
With this newly-signed partnership, PATA provided the
forewords for the new Operational Handbooks that are practical
guides for applying best environmental practice within dive and
snorkel centres, dive destinations and within national
governments. The handbooks also provide solutions for dive centre
owners, managers, staff, resource managers and authorities on how
to handle related environmental challenges by following the Green
Fins code of conduct.
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