BICREF celebrated Environment Day 2004 in a special way, for two main reasons: first this year’s UNEP theme is the Sea and Oceans of the World which BICREF strongly support and secondly BICREF received a dinghy, engine and trailer generously sponsored by MECCA and General Soft Drinks toward assisting BICREF’s marine work. The presentation of this useful sponsorship took place at Portomaso Marina on Saturday, Environment Day in the presence of several youths that will be participating in BICREF’s research and awareness activities this summer.
BICREF members are all voluntary workers and sponsorships are utilized 100% to cover research expenses. BICREF however does not stop at research as it always delivers results that may also be enjoyed by the wider public. Examples include: the first-ever photographic exhibition of Dolphins in Maltese Waters; Documentaries on Eco-tourism in Malta for both locals and tourists alike; News clips on marine environmental matters; Awareness on issues relevant to safeguarding the marine ecosystems and marine vulnerable species; Interviews and public talks on our marine resources and habitats on TV stations and public places. BICREF has also managed to involve an increasing number of sea-users such as fishermen, sailing crews, Gozo Ferries crews, AFM, Civil Protection and SCUBA divers, toward reporting relevant information while they use the marine environment.
BICREF has been working for years and has put marine issues in the forefront with no limits to the distance from our coast. Far or close, all life in our sea is necessary and an important part of the marine system. BICREF is assisting in the difficult cetacean and turtle survey research as it is assisting in coastal biodiversity research. BICREF has involved itself with the education and awareness of children and adults in the belief that all ages need to reinforce their awareness to grow with a better appreciated, valued and safeguarded environment.
As this year the UNEP selected the 2004 theme to focus on our Seas and Oceans, BICREF was particularly happy to support this theme as the sea and its wonderful biodiversity is often forgotten in our every day routines that may not allow us to appreciate the tremendous contribution played by our seas and oceans.
The Maltese Islands are right in the Middle of the Mediterranean Sea and as such has an important role to play in connection with this Sea. Marine Conservation Research and action needs to be promoted in every possible way. Everyone can assist towards this important goal.
BICREF would like to remind the little but important everyday actions each one of us can do toward a better marine environment, starting from using our water in a more responsible manner, to taking care of what we throw down our sinks. The way we dispose of our wastes is also important and thus a second’s consideration prior to damping our plastic bag or bottle just anywhere has today an amplified effect due to our greater consumerism.
On Environment Day 2004, BICREF is particularly thankful to MECCA and GENERAL SOFT DRINKS for sponsoring a very much needed dinghy to assist in BICREF’s voluntary marine research work.
This sponsorship is a beautiful example of how businesses and other entities may not only use the natural themes for their propaganda without ever assisting work for its understanding and protection, but on the contrary utilize some of its funds to support long-term work for the environment. The public should support the latter entities, since they would be supporting work toward a better environment for their children and grand children.
Since 2004 BICREF has managed to undertake numerous coastal surveys with this dinghy and has also organised annual seminars to educate the public on coastal and marine affairs, problems and possible solutions for the safeguard of our marine biodiversity.