VISAKHAPATNAM: Six scuba diving instructors of Platypus Escapes, a Rushikonda-based company, have been diving two metres down under the sea every day to remove plastic waste accumulated there. They have collected over 4,000 kg of plastic waste in 13 days. This team dives into the sea from about 100 metres from the shore.
Speaking to TNIE about how they began the underwater clean up programme, Platypus Escapes senior instructor Subhash Chandran said, “It came upon all of a sudden. 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.”
“After we started the programme, we removed 400 kg to 500 kg of plastic waste daily after remaining underwater for four to five hours. We segregate aquatic waste from the plastic waste and dump it in Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) dumping yard,” he said.
Commenting on the amount of plastic gathered underwater, Subhash Chandran said it’s high time that people know the outcome of throwing plastic waste in the sea. “We are also looking for volunteers who are divers, who can help us collect plastic waste to make our efforts successful. Non-divers can help us segregate waste and create awareness among people on plastic use,” the senior scuba diving instructor said.
He said about three to four fishermen of Mangamaripeta area helping them by providing boats and coming along with us on most days. “We have done deep-sea diving from nearly all the beaches of the city.” The team is making people aware about the affects of throwing plastic waste into the sea.