New app transforms any smartphone into an ocean protection tool

Project AWARE has developed a smartphone app that will enable scuba divers around the world to record levels of marine debris that is causing increasing problems for wildlife and ocean habitats.

Project awareThe new app is designed to make it easier for scuba divers to register information on the man-made debris they encounter on their dives, building a collection of data shared with scientific and conservation bodies. It includes a list of common debris items and uses geo-location for quick and easy reporting.

Project AWARE developed the mobile app to support the data submission process for its global underwater marine debris survey Dive Against Debris, which began in 2011 in an attempt to map the extent of the underwater problem.

Danna Moore, Project AWARE’s Director, said, “For many people, marine debris is a problem that’s out-of-sight, out-of-mind once it enters the marine environment. This is mainly because 70 percent of marine debris that enters the ocean sinks to the seafloor. That’s why scuba divers are so critical to this movement - they have the unique ability to bring to the surface what’s going on beneath the waves."

The free Dive Against Debris app is available now for iOS and Android devices from the App Store or Google Play. For more information visit projectaware.org