Costa Brava Expedition 2013

After waiting for so long I finally did the dive on Wednesday the 30th July.

But I had to make some changes. As the other big sponsor I was waiting for was all the time “now yes, now no again” because of the financial crisis, I had had enough so I decided to shorten the dive to a five hour non-stop one and I added collecting debris, and I did it all PRO-BONO. I did it all free for the Oceans.

Early in the morning I went out with the boat to a cliff site, got ready with all the equipment and into the water. It was of a greenish colour and full of particles although the surface was calm, it was not the beautiful blue from just five years ago.

I took some photos of the only remaining species that there are like lobster, sea urchin, octopus, sea star, anemone, some nudibranchs, to say a few. I compared all my samples and observations with just five years ago. Many species have disappeared. The salinity levels have risen from 35.2psu to 38.2psu. The temperature has changed in the first 20 metres from an average 22ºC at surface and 20ºC at 20 metres to 26ºC at surface and 16ºC at 20 metres. That is a ten degrees difference within only 20 metres. Obviously the species don’t know where they are anymore. A lot of Coral bleaching. The degree of contamination from oil, petrol and sewage is high. I collected debris like tins and mostly plastic which can last up to 450 years. And the lethal plastic beverage holder in which many animals get caught.

I ended the dive arriving to the beach, where I was received by some adults clapping but mainly by children cheering and asking me questions, which made my day.

Obviously I still have the 10 hour one in mind to raise funds and will continue to pursue it and do it, but from what I have seen and experienced moneywise in this part has made me consider doing it elsewhere in another location, another country.

I would like to thank the physiotherapist and doctor Jean Yves and Oliver, my great diving assistant and photographer Edu Cortés, “Cataleya Diving”, “Cendrassos English School” and “Viatges Fergana” for their humble but fantastic sponsorship and all the people and media that have stood by my side.

(Photos by John Laboria and Edu Cortés)

John Laboria


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