With a population of more than 1.35 billion, nearly 550,000 tons (49,89,51,607 Kg) of mismanaged plastic waste reaches the ocean every year from India alone, according to a report by the National Geographic. Imagine the lustrous blue ocean and home for several species of the aquatic life turning into a gigantic pile of plastic waste. It’s heartbreaking.
Several parts of India have decided on banning plastic altogether and thankfully, people have come to realise that their mess should be cleared by none other than themselves. Many are coming forward to clear their surroundings of toxic waste materials.
Speaking of which, six scuba diving instructors from Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh took it upon themselves to remove accumulated plastic from the sea. Within 13 days, they have managed to collect and over 4,000 kg of plastic waste, reported The New Indian Express.
These scuba diving instructors work for Platypus Escapes, a Rushikonda-based company. They dive 2 metres under the surface of the sea from 100 metres off the shore. Speaking to sources, they said:
“One day, when we came back from deep-sea diving at Mangamaripeta beach, we noticed a few plastic bottles and pouches had stuck to our diving suits. That was when we realised the severity of the issue and so we began this programme three weeks ago.”
The team collected 400-500 Kgs of plastic waste every day after remaining underwater for nearly 5 hours. After separating aquatic waste from plastic waste, they dumped the garbage into the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation dumping yard.
3-4 fishermen of Mangamaripeta helped the team by providing them with boats and coming along on most days.
One of the senior instructors from the team said that people should realise the consequence of throwing waste into the ocean. They are now looking for both divers and non-divers to help them with their endeavour and spread awareness about water pollution.
We hope many more come forward and volunteer for this necessary and noble cause. Our environment is in danger and it is up to us to save it!