Waste Management at Your Fingertips – and Why It’s Important!

Waste Management at Your Fingertips – and Why It’s Important!

by Mardia, AMD-B’s 2023 Divemaster Internship

The ugly journey of plastic trash is not a myth. Plastic trash is an unpleasant reality that we all have to deal with, it’s everywhere, and it’s not going away anytime soon. In today’s world, the use of plastic has become an integral part of our daily lives. Plastic has become ubiquitous from packaging to household items due to its convenience and affordability. However, the overuse of plastic has also led to environmental concerns, and it’s no secret that plastic has become a pervasive and pressing issue. From single-use items to microplastic pollution, the detrimental effects of plastic on our environment are undeniable. However, it’s essential to acknowledge that despite our best efforts, we still need plastic for certain purposes. So, the question arises: what is the solution? Waste management is the answer when it comes to finding a solution to the ever-growing waste problem. Effective waste management practices are crucial in addressing environmental concerns and promoting sustainability.

In everyday life, there are typically two types of waste: degradable and non-degradable. In addition, there was an expansion to include a greater variety of waste categories in the commercial sector. Regarding waste management, AquaMarine has taken a step by implementing a system separating waste into three distinct categories. This approach ensures that each type of waste is handled appropriately, minimizing the negative impact on the environment.

AquaMarine’s Waste Bins in HQ Office


The first category is non-degradable waste, which includes materials such as plastic, metal, and glass. These items are known for their long lifespan and inability to break down naturally. By identifying them as a separate category, AquaMarine acknowledges the need for special treatment and disposal methods to prevent them from polluting our surroundings.

Next up is degradable waste, primarily consisting of paper. Unlike non-degradable waste, paper can decompose over time. However, it still requires proper management to ensure that it doesn’t end up in landfills where it can contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.

Lastly, AquaMarine addresses organic waste, including leftover food, tissue, and other organic materials.

In the realm of waste management, it is crucial to have a reliable partner by your side. And in our case, we are fortunate enough to have already established a strong alliance with our waste management partner, who assists us in handling our waste efficiently. This partnership has proven invaluable in ensuring our waste is managed responsibly and sustainably.

The waste management problem is not limited to plastic alone. Harmful chemicals and other pollutants enter the ocean, affecting the water quality and marine life. This pollution can also negatively affect human health, as consuming contaminated seafood can cause severe health issues.


Ecobrick to Prevent the Uncontrollable Spread of Plastic Packaging Waste

Waste management is an important matter that must be addressed. We must find ways to reduce our waste output and ensure that our generated waste is disposed of properly. This can be accomplished through recycling, eco-friendly products, and proper disposal of hazardous waste. We are responsible for caring for our planet and leaving future generations with a healthy and sustainable environment. By collaborating to manage our waste, we can protect our oceans and the valuable life that resides within them. Remember that every action counts, and by changing our daily routines, we can significantly impact our planet’s health.


AquaMarine’s Monthly Beach Clean-Up Activity

Being EcoDivers to Support Climate Crisis Success

Eco-Friendly Divers

by Ara, AMD-B’s Environment Officer

For most scuba divers it is self-evident we should be concerned by what we are facing beneath our oceans. As ocean users, the least we can do is be responsible for ensuring our behaviour has minimum negative impact and follows eco-friendly practices. The ‘Climate Change Crisis’ is very high on the list of priorities AND everyone is able to makes changes anytime, anywhere.

Why are scuba divers boldly geared up to be Ocean Ambassadors?

  1. Coral is the most diverse, complex, rich, and valuable ecosystem which also contributes an enormous amount of oxygen (a lot more than trees) and supports our life resources.
  2. Divers have the privilege of exploring the underwater realm. Despite the fact we can’t control what other people do, we can demonstrate to non-divers who cannot see the ugly journey of our waste. Over and above, human destructive behaviour always ends up using the ocean as their landfill.
  3. Divers are witnesses of how our planet is becoming devastated. When the ocean is destroyed, it will give domino effect to our daily life, it also applies in vice versa. What scuba divers see, and pass on, helps the public to understand and visualise what we shouldn’t do AND what we can do to help our planet.

This century’s technological sophistication help us to simplify into intelligible information for the public by using social media.

The ‘ocean issues’ divers mostly find are:
– Coral cover degradation,
– Ocean destructive waste,
– Diminutive biodiverse fishes.
These are the indicators where we can see how powerfully land activity impacts coastal areas.


Why destroy; why not preserve this beautiful nature?

How does all of this integrate with land residents behaviour?

First, humans throw away their solid non-degradable waste in uncontrollable amounts. Nowhere in Indonesia does the local population have an adequate waste management programme. There is no regional or government collection. So, where do you think it will all end up? It will accumulate in one place, over a long period of time, then it rains and so the debris moves, piece by piece slowly to the nearest rivers – and everything that goes to river will be end in the ocean.

Second, liquid household waste that contain hazardous ingredients that can jeopardize water and soil. Which again! it will finally run into the ocean.

Third, coral degradation can be caused by many things such as destructive land-waste, unsustainable fishing, misleading ‘reef-safe’ sunscreen ingredients, bad in-water activity behaviours, and the most important climate change: A rise in ocean temperature causing coral bleaching.


Eating plastic “jellyfish” kills turtles – turtles are a key species to control ocean balance.

PADI’s ‘Adopt the Blue’ is a path to restore corals at sites where major coral decline has occurred. The goal is to create a new spawning and nursery ground for marine creatures.

AMD-B is also committed to ‘Dive Against Debris’. The programme provides an excellent network to expand what divers have done and record those efforts to then publish on our social media.


AMD-B’s Monthly Commitment to ‘Dive Against Debris’

Here I help the summary!
All human lives depend on the ocean – The oceans depend on our on-land behaviour – Scuba divers have help protect our ocean barriers! (Of course everyone can lend a hand. There are millions of things non-divers can also do to make our ocean and planet better protected).

Mola-Mola (Ocean sunfish) in Indonesia

Mola-Mola (Ocean sunfish) in Indonesia

The massive Ocean sunfish (Mola) is a unique and odd-looking fish. Mola are the world’s heaviest bony fish, reaching up to 1,000kg, and can have 300 million eggs. With their flat, tail-less body, they are not only the world’s largest bony fish, but also one of the most elusive fishes in the world. Sunfish develop their truncated, bullet-like shape because their back fin simply never grows; instead, it folds into itself as the enormous creature matures, creating a rounded rudder called a clauvus.

Their two long dorsal fins mean Mola-Mola can be 3.5m in height but, although they have rounded bodies, they are very narrow when seen from front/back (“mola” is Latin for ‘millstone’).

Mola-Mola in German is ‘schwimmender kopf’ = floating head; in French, Poisson Lune (Moon Fish). In fact, most languages have a name for Mola-Mola (some make more sense than others!).


WHERE in Indonesia to see Mola-Mola

Bali: The most likely place in Indonesia to see Molas. They are seen off the east coast of the mainland, and around the offshore island of Nusa Penida.

South of Komodo: The site is actually famous for Manta rays however sunfish are sometimes also seen.

Pantar Strait, Alor: Molas come up from the very deep waters to get cleaned and can be found lying flat on the surface.

WHEN to see Mola-Mola

To write from personal knowledge and experience, I’ll focus on Bali’s Mola which I believe are in Bali’s waters year-round (recorded as deep as 360m).

Mola suffer from external parasites (up to 40 kinds!) which need to be removed by ‘cleaner fish’. The cleaner fish live much shallower on coral reefs.

Therefore, from July to mid-November, Mola-Mola drift up on the incredibly cold, but very fertile, upwelling from the 3.5km deep Bali Trough off Bali’s southern coast, to get cleaned. That is how we are able to see them at recreational diving depths.

Seven days from now, our Nusa Penida trip will be focusing on Mola-Mola sites. So, if you are aiming for Mola-Mola this year, contact our Dive Travel Consultants and get yourself signed up. In addition, make sure you don’t miss out our Mola-Mola special offers.

HOW to see Mola-Mola

Despite their size, if they don’t feel safe, Mola won’t come close to the reef or approach the schools of fishes waiting to clean them.

If you see a Mola (or 4) or your AquaMarine Dive Guide spots one (or 7), just stop moving. At that stage, do not try to approach the Mola, two flips of those long dorsal fins, and they will be gone!

You need to stay really, really still, close to the reef. Let the fish come closer, settle on the reef, and go into their Cleaning Meditation. Once a Mola finds a place to get cleaned, it tips 45 degrees upwards, and often slightly sideways, and genuinely seems to go into a trance.

When that happens, usually you and your group, rather than the Molas, will be the first ones to leave as you are limited by maximum bottom time, or air supply. Plus the water can be very cold.


Movement and Diet

Mola are clumsy (but fast) swimmers, waggling their large dorsal and anal fins to move and steering with their clauvus.

Ocean sunfish mainly eat jellyfish – obviously in huge quantities! – so plastic bags pose a big hazard to them (this also applies to turtles).

Protection for Mola-Mola (Ocean sunfish)

The Coral Triangle Center (CTC, a non-profit organization engaged in Coral Reef Conservation) has proposed to the Indonesian Government to include Mola as one of the country’s Protected Animals.

PS: I’ll let you into a little secret – ssshh! Here in Bali we actually have Mola alexandrini rather than Mola-Mola, but “Mola-Mola” is so much more fun to say and it’s used Bali-wide.