Marine conservation charity asks tourists to look for Green Fins when planning their holiday
The Reef-World Foundation and Chamber of Diving & Watersports (CDWS) are pleased to announce Green Fins – a UN Environment Programme initiative which provides the world’s only internationally recognised standards for diving and snorkelling – has now been expanded to be available to all dive and snorkel operators nationwide across Egypt.
Green Fins was piloted in South Sinai Governorate in September 2019 and has now been expanded nationwide, following a week-long training for six new Green Fins Assessors in Red Sea Governorate (23 to 29 February 2020). Through the implementation of the Green Fins initiative nationally, the Egyptian marine tourism industry is playing its part in protecting coral reefs from the negative impacts associated with diving and snorkelling.
Following the recent lifting of UK flight restrictions to Sharm el Sheikh, and the resultant increase in tourism to the already popular country, The Reef-World Foundation is reminding tourists of the importance of protecting the reefs they visit; urging them to follow environmental best practice and book with a Green Fins operator wherever possible. The CDWS is rallying more dive centres to sign up to the Green Fins initiative to help improve their sustainability and prove they are following environmental best practice.
Diving related damage to sensitive marine ecosystems, including coral reefs, makes them less likely to survive other local and wider stressors, such as overfishing or plastic debris as well the effects of climate change, such as rising sea temperatures. Green Fins is a UN Environment Programme initiative, internationally coordinated by The Reef-World Foundation, which helps identify and mitigate these risks through environmentally friendly guidelines to promote a sustainable diving and snorkelling tourism industry.
Chloe Harvey, Director at The Reef-World Foundation, said:
“We’re proud to be helping protect Red Sea coral reefs by expanding Green Fins nationwide across Egypt. Congratulations to the Green Fins Hurghada Assessor team members who are now certified to recruit, train and conduct robust assessments to evaluate the environmental impact of dive and snorkel operators in the country. They will also provide training about the ecology and threats to coral reefs and offer practical, local and low-cost solutions to these threats. Through their one-to-one consultations, the Green Fins national team in Egypt will play a vital role in helping the country’s marine tourism industry improve its sustainability; ultimately, protecting the Red Sea’s precious coral reefs for future generations.”
Hesham Gabr, Chair of the Chamber of Diving & Watersports, said:
“To date, nine Egyptian dive and snorkel operators have already joined the global network of nearly 600 trained and assessed Green Fins members, with significant interest from other operators who are awaiting their training and assessment. In the coming year, we aim to certify 30 marine tourism operators, train 150 dive guides and raise awareness of sustainability best practice among 30,000 tourists. Green Fins is a critical part of our ambitious action plan to strengthen sustainability within the marine tourism sector across Egypt and we are excited to see the continued results.”
Amr El Ezabi, Director of the Egyptian State Tourist Office (UK and Ireland), said:
“This is the kind of partnership I value and search for. Based on respect, exchange of knowledge, building capacity and at the end realise the targets through sharing the culture. It fulfils all the requirements of sustainability. We are building a community together. Marketing the Red Sea on this basis is solid and sustainable. We are very happy about the implementation of Green Fins in Egypt.”
While Green Fins is usually adopted by a government body (which integrates the programme’s activities with their annual plans and absorbs associated costs), in Egypt the industry has collaborated to bring Green Fins to the area through the CDWS. CDWS is a non-profit organisation and Egyptian operators pay an annual CDWS membership fee of 5,500 Egyptian pounds (LE) to cover costs associated with audits. For those who would like to voluntarily participate in Green Fins, an additional fee will be charged to cover the associated costs of the programme. The Ministry of Environment is CDWS’ main counterpart in the implementation of Green Fins Egypt. The country is the first in its region and 11th worldwide to officially adopt Green Fins.
The Green Fins approach includes proven assessment criteria to identify and mitigate high-risk practices both above and below the water. Green Fins members are evaluated annually based on a 15-point code of conduct, which measures the company’s impact on coral reefs: of a possible score of 330, the lower the score, the lower its impact. The assessment then enables Green Fins assessors to offer practical alternatives to the most pressing threats posed by that business. To ensure its members are fully compliant with the Green Fins Code of Conduct, the CDWS will introduce a minimum environmental impact benchmark of for Green Fins certification; a world first for Green Fins.
The launch of Green Fins Egypt was made possible thanks to financing support from the United Nations Development Programme through its project “Mainstreaming the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity into the tourism development and operations in threatened ecosystems in Egypt.”
Egyptian dive and snorkel operators interested in signing up to Green Fins can contact the Green Fins Team at CDWS (email@example.com).
Calling all ocean torchbearers in Hurghada, Egypt!
As part of PADI AWARE Week, we are thrilled to announce an exciting collaboration between PADI, PADI AWARE, Seiko, HEPCA, and CDWS. Join them for an extraordinary underwater clean-up event at Magawish Island, Hurghada, on the 13th September 2023.
Guided by local PADI dive centers and marine experts from HEPCA, you can participate in a Dive Against Debris and make a tangible difference in saving our ocean.
Imagine diving into the crystal-clear waters of the Red Sea, surrounded by vibrant marine life, while actively contributing to its preservation. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to connect with your local dive community and experience the wonders of this remarkable ecosystem.
Participants can also enjoy some fantastic giveaways, including hats, T-shirts, metal water bottles, and more.
- Date: 13th September 2023
- Time: 10am
- Location: Magawish Island, Hurghada
- Requirements: Participants must be PADI Open Water certified
To secure your spot simply sign up here or contact a participating local PADI Dive Center in Hurghada.
Participating PADI Dive Centers at time of writing:
|Blue Paradise Diving Center||Scuba Diving in Hurghada | Diving Holidays | Blue Paradise|
|Scuba World Makadi||Diving in Makadi Bay – courses, daily diving, snorkeling (scubaworlddivers.com)|
|Aquarius Diving Club Grand Hotel||Aquarius Diving Club Hurghada – Home (aquariusredsea.com)|
|Aquarius Diving Club Marriott||Aquarius Diving Club Hurghada – Home (aquariusredsea.com)|
|Colona Dive Center||Home | Colona Divers|
|Diving Star||Diving in Hurghada – Diving School | Diving Star Egypt (diving-star.com)|
|Chloe’s Diving Centre||Chloe’s Diving Center | Hurghada city | PADI Dive Center|
Emperor Divers welcome divers to Seven Seas with 20% off
The much-loved Red Sea liveaboard Seven Seas has become a full member of the Emperor Divers fleet.
Having worked in collaboration with the Seven Seas team in recent months, Emperor have now integrated her into their fleet to make her their flagship vessel in the region.
Seven Seas has won the “Best Liveaboard in the Red Sea” award on five occasions which speaks volumes for the quality of trip she offers. She is a true icon of liveaboard holidays in this region providing a great diving experience from truly elegant surroundings.
At 41 metres long with 12 spacious cabins – each with marble clad en-suite and separate shower room – there is plenty of room to relax, while the five-star service on board includes sensational food and wonderful facilities. She is perfect for diving as the large deck has spacious and powerful zodiac tenders with ladders.
The view from the barbecue lounge – where freshly-grilled food is produced – on the upper deck is amazing while there is also a large dining room, welcoming bar and beautiful sundeck.
Bringing such a fantastic boat into the team is a real cause for celebration at Emperor who will now do everything they can to continue providing the high-quality diving holidays for which Seven Seas is renowned.
SPECIAL WELCOME OFFER – GET 20% OFF!
Anyone booking a 2023 sailing on Seven Seas will receive 20% off the cost of their trip. That’s a massive saving and a great way to welcome Seven Seas to the Emperor family.
For more, visit www.emperordivers.com