Coral reefs are one of the most magnificent natural wonders on the planet. There are various reasons why these magnificent underwater ecosystems are so important. In addition to being home to a quarter of all marine species, they protect coastal areas from storms and provide a source of income for hundreds of millions of people worldwide.
As humans are trying to work together to achieve a shared objective of conserving the marine ecosystem, many are making efforts to reduce their carbon footprint. Reef-building corals may be able to mend and recover from previous and future bleaching disasters, according to scientists who believe that improved ocean environmental conditions may help them do so. Even WWF introduced tools to help scientists in this mission. While there are no guarantees that coral reefs will survive indefinitely, tourists can do a few things to protect coral reefs while they are traveling.
10 Dive And Snorkel In A Safe And Responsible Manner
When snorkeling or scuba diving, it is recommended that tourists know where they are and what they are touching. Although they can certainly take in the beauty of the coral reefs, travelers should still avoid touching them as coral reefs are a delicate ecosystem. In fact, any type of interaction with them can harm the microscopic marine organisms that live there causing them to die. If one is curious and gives the reefs even a gentle touch, the natural hand oil can be lethal despite being zero physical damage. Similarly, travelers should keep their fins to a minimum to prevent disturbing sediments on the seafloor bottom and suffocating coral colonies when taking in the underwater scenery. Also, it is much better to follow the local rules and regulations when snorkeling or diving and educate oneself on the importance of exploring coral reefs responsibly.
9 Take Advantage Of The Local Dining Scene In The Area
Due to the appeal of nutritious seafood, fishes have begun overfishing to suit this desire and have caused some terrible environmental effects. In fact, coral reefs are under threat due to fishers participating in exploitative fishing practices, which has resulted in the reef’s health being threatened. As a result, overfishing is a significant threat to coral reefs worldwide. One should make sure to buy from a sustainable source that avoids practices like indiscriminate fishing and spawning aggregation.
8 Support Sustainable And Green Businesses
Ecologically minded businesses are likewise concerned about the state of the reef. So for travelers out there, give support to those companies committed to aiding and sustaining the environment’s health. . Such locations can be found in great numbers through America's National Green Pages database, where American travelers can check. In fact, stock ownership will provide them with the additional benefit of utilizing their proxy voting power to urge giant firms into "becoming green" and halting environmentally harmful fishing practices.
7 Support Projects That Promote The Conservation Of Coral Reefs
Coral reef conservation measures are being implemented by several hotels and travel operators to ensure the long-term survival of coral reefs. In fact, coral gardening and other eco-friendly activities are becoming increasingly popular at eco-friendly hotels and resorts. The very least that travelers can do is to book a room at one of these establishments during their next beach holiday to show their support because, for sure, they will learn about reef conservation projects and how to leave the reef in a better condition through these establishments.
6 Take Proper Waste Disposal And Recycling Precautions
It is recommended that travelers always remember to put the three R's of sustainability (Reuse, Reduce, Recycle) into action every time they venture out onto the beach. Plastic bottles should be reused, and paper, glass, and any other type of plastic should be recycled at recycling facilities. So, it is good for them to properly dispose of waste so that it does not end up in the water.
5 Avoid Feeding Fish By Hand
Fish feeding is a common practice among visitors to coral reef-based tourist destinations. In fact, tour providers use the chance to provide visitors with an up-close view of aquatic life. On the other hand, this behavior is likely detrimental to the coral reef ecology since fish serve as a natural balance between coral and algae alongside them being potentially aggressive to future snorkelers. If one wants to feed a fish, they should simply put the fish food on algae within the coral to improve its health and survival.
4 While On Vacation, Consider Volunteering
Contribute to preserving coral reefs by participating in beach or reef clean-up events. Several groups and organizations held clean-up events where volunteers were encouraged to collaborate with marine conservation. So, if travelers are proficient in scuba diving, there are numerous chances to assist the monitoring and preserving coral reefs.
3 Help Reduce Carbon Footprint
One of the most significant causes of coral dying is ocean warming, caused by greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles and industrial facilities. As a result of these emissions, ocean acidification occurs, making it difficult for corals to construct their shells and skeletons. So, travelers are recommended to reduce their carbon footprint by opting for environmentally-friendly modes such as walking, bicycling, public transportation. These small but significant adjustments will go a long way toward assuring the long-term survival of coral reefs for present and future generations.
2 Avoid Purchasing Souvenirs Made Of Coral
Coral has been a favorite souvenir for many years, used in everything from jewelry, home decor, and crafts. On the other hand, many buyers are unaware that these souvenirs are created from living animals that are essential to the survival of a healthy reef ecosystem. Shallow and deep ocean corals are threatened by overharvesting because of high consumer demand, so it is better to avoid purchasing any souvenirs made from coral.
1 Consider To Travel Lightly
It is recommended that travelers and tourists consider going light by simply bringing what they must have in travel. In addition to saving money and time, they will be able to find what they need more quickly at their destination if they pack essentials efficiently. Remember that it's good to support the local economy by shopping at the local markets.