Phi Phi Island Protection and Conservation Team 2015
There is some great news for Phi Phi which could see some really positive changes coming regarding the local reefs and environment.
Koh Phi Phi is naturally stunning, with thousands of visitors coming each day. Earlier this year local business owners, both Thai and Farang, met to discuss the impact of tourism on the island and problems that needed to be addressed.
What came of these meetings was the founding of ‘Phi Phi Island Protection and Conservation Team’ (‘PACT’). A great step forward for Koh Phi Phi!
The local community and dive shops are determined to help conserve these islands and encourage visitors to do the same.
A main problem is the increase of plastic and other waste washing up on beaches. This is not only an eyesore, but also damaging to marine life. Turtles are very much at risk as they often mistake plastic for jellyfish which they like to eat. Not only is this devastating for their digestive system, they often get tangled and caught up in the nets, garbage and plastic and get badly injured or worse.
Another problem is boat anchors being accidentally dropped on corals as the number of boats visiting the island increases and there was a lack of mooring lines.
Something else we see more often than we would like is snorkeling and diving tours which allow their guests to stand on the corals, collect animals and feed fish.
Let’s make a difference!
The Solution? Well, the aim of PACT is to preserve the island’s beauty both above and below the water. How can we do this?
We want to educate and encourage responsible business practices when it comes to snorkeling, long-tail, diving and speedboat trips; guests briefed not to stand on corals or to collect or touch any marine life, and not to feed the fish.
Each Friday small cleanups will be held around the island. Anyone who has dived with Blue View Divers will know that when tides allow us to stop at the beach for lunch during our surface interval, we do our best to collect one or two bags of rubbish a day. With everyone doing a little bit each day we can make a huge difference.
You might also notice many new garbage and recycling bins around Tonsai Town and signs erected threatening a 2000 THB fine for littering. The streets have been nicely paved and palm trees have been planted along the water front next to the new sea wall to protect from erosion.
Installation of Mooring Lines
Over the past few months, teams of divers have installed many mooring lines and buoys around Phi Phi Leh so that there should be no reason for boats to drop anchor onto the reef below. Viking Dive Site, which is home to a Coral Nursery and Artificial Reef Project, will very soon be a protected area where boats cannot enter. Not only does that save the reef from boats anchoring but also makes the area safe for beginner divers, just like a confined water area.
SAVE PHI PHI DAY – 20TH OCTOBER 2015
There was a massive clean operation on 20th this month to clean up above and below the water, all around Koh Phi Phi. It went well and with a massive turn out of volunteers, hundreds of kilos of rubbish was collected!
Blue View Divers had a boat full of divers that morning so we could only spare two of our team to assist in the ‘official’ cleanup. But we HAD to do our bit! So, we used our surface interval to clear all the plastic from our little beach in Maya Bay, as we like to call ‘Blue View Beach’.
We lunch here most days over the high season, so after a 4 month hiatus we had a big job! We cleared more than 8 bags of rubbish from the beach with the helping hand of our divers and some other tourists from another boat! We stockpiled what we couldn’t take on the boat and will be collecting over the next few days.
Thank you to our divers and staff for your help in our beach clean up; Kellie, Diane, Luisa, JP, Gerne, Caroline.
If you think of anything, or see anything that you think should be protected, please let PACT know:
If you find any nets or abandoned fishing gear please can you let us know as we are partnered with Olive Ridley Project: