Healthy Seas returns to the Aeolian Islands from 3rd – 8th June 2019 to celebrate World Oceans Day. Together with Ghost Fishing, Aeolian Islands Preservation Fund and Blue Marine Foundation, we will carry out our second multi-day mission at the breathtaking volcanic islands, in Italy.
The sea around the Aeolian Islands is home to some of Europe’s endangered marine species. Bottlenose dolphins, loggerhead sea turtles, sperm whales, and dusky groupers, have been found entangled in nets near the Aeolian Islands and in the Tyrrhenian Sea, suffering unnecessarily and in many cases eventually dying.
The long-term objective of the project is to aid the process for the creation of a well-managed marine protected area (MPA) across the Aeolian archipelago by contributing to the awareness of the local community towards the protection of the marine environment.
Funding for this World Oceans Day event in the Aeolian Islands is provided by Maratona Dles Dolomites-Enel (July 7th, 2019), one of the biggest cyclosportives in Europe now in its 33rd year. This year’s marathon is dedicated to “Tomorrow” to remind us that we need to find a better balance between the present and future by establishing a renewed relationship with nature.
An education programme for the local children will be carried out in the classrooms as well as the Lipari harbour where the children will have front row seats to how the divers prepare and also get the opportunity to ask them questions. The education programme will culminate in an art festival held on Saturday, June 8th, World Oceans Day, at the Port of Lipari.
The collected fishing nets will be cleaned and combined with other nylon waste materials by Aquafil, before being transformed into ECONYL® regenerated nylon, the infinitely recyclable material. This will provide the basis for beautiful new products such as socks, sportswear, swimwear and carpets. Healthy Seas is an excellent example for the circular economy, where waste is a resource.
This is the 2nd of 4 main events Healthy Seas will carry out during 2019, doing its part to protect the marine environment through ghost net cleanups and raising public awareness besides the regular activities organized throughout the year.
First Mission (October 2018)
In October 2018, the same team of organizations successfully recovered over 4 tons of ghost fishing gear from Lipari and the surrounding islands. During the mission, Ghost Fishing volunteer divers recovered their largest ever net. In June, they will return to finish the deep-sea cleanup, carry out a harbor cleanup as well as an interactive and outstanding educational program with local schools.