Thursday, May 28, 2009

Putting garbage in the ocean on purpose?

I guess it's ok if you sink a big old warship and call it a "reef." In fact, it's not only OK, it's an economic opportunity. Project officials expect the $8 million cost of the project to be recovered in just a year of wreck-diving related revenue.

I like to dive underwater and look at things, but I've never understood the fascination with diving on wrecks. I'd rather look at ocean stuff than human stuff underwater. If I want to see deteriorating hulks, I can just go to a junkyard.

The warship Vandenberg was all done warshipping and needed to go somewhere. So the Key West Dive community put together an effort to sink the ship where divers can enjoy it and spend a pile of money enjoying it. Call it economic development. I wish they put the effort into natural habitats, making natural diving better.

Oh well, nobody asked me.


Fish Whisperer said...

It would be nice if they put that money towards cleaning it up rather than dumping crap in the oceans.

Tony Wildish said...

I was of a similar mind about diving on wrecks, why bother? Then I dived on a ship that was deliberately (cleaned and) sunk just off Machafushi in the Maldives. Compared to the house reef, there was a lot more variety on that wreck, it clearly enhanced the local ecosystem. The amount of life on it was just incredible, and I made a point of diving on it every day I was there.

I now believe that, done properly, sinking ships like this can be a valuable addition to a reef, and a sensible way to dispose of these things. Of course, I emphasise the 'done properly'!

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