The volunteers of KSDC after completing the mission of coral reef cleaning near Churna Island. -- Photo by Suhail Yusuf / Dawn.com

The Coral Reef Cleaning Day is led by Mr. Yousuf Ali and will take place at Churna Island. Ali was kind enough to have given one of our reporters an in-depth account of scuba diving, the risks involved and how our marine life is endangered due to general lack of awareness, improper waste management and industrial pollution.

For KSDC, scuba divers are not just people with an interesting hobby but they are a reliable source of information on the extent of damage and repair done to local marine life. Ali feels that it is the divers’ social responsibility to do what they can with their skills and talents to protect the environment.

He says that sights of broken coral, the debris being dumped on the reef, the on going destruction of the flora and fauna and the gorgeous coral reef, and the damage done to underwater habitat are as distressing as watching a piece of himself decay. According to him most people who are sincere about scuba diving are also sincere about nature. One cannot exist without the other.

For the majority of our population, the underwater marine life, the flora and fauna and the breathtaking coral reef coastline of our country is still shrouded in mystery. KSDC is trying, and to some extent succeeding, in creating mass awareness about this vast, unexplored and most importantly, local ecosystem.

The aim is to unite divers and environmental enthusiasts together so that the scuba sport and Marine Environmental Awareness and Eco Tourism can be promoted more extensively. In addition to the information and the excitement, divers are encouraged to have a rudimentary auction or trade of their scuba equipment.

Hopefully this will encourage the support and sponsorship of corporate firms who seek to be socially responsible and environmentally sound. Their long term goal to work with local communities to help rebuild and repair the marine environment.

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