Global underwater explorers (GUE) Science strives to define an objective starting point – a baseline in which starting conditions such as water quality, water clarity, fish counts and living reef coverage are compared to evolving conditions. Environmental declines can then be quantified and appropriate corrective actions developed. This comparative process is compromised when the measure of decline stems from non-existent or poorly defined historical conditions. In this case, the baseline continually “shifts’ ‘ downward as people with a different historical memory are outnumbered by newcomers – we refer to this phenomenon as Baseline Shift. Baseline Shift is a significant force for environmental degradation because it shrouds problems from the light of public recognition. Establishing a global library of baseline measurements is one of the most important things we can do to protect our cherished natural environments – this effort is called the GUE Project Baseline
In collaboration with GUE UAE, Freestyle divers have implemented Project Baseline at our local reef, DIbba Rock, the UAEs oldest marine protected area.
Establish a baseline photographic data set so that any degradation of the reefs going forward can be monitored, allowing for the easy detection of adverse events. This is an easy technique which can be done on every dive to create a valuable photo library timeline.
James Campbell is our resident marine biologist and has worked with GUE UAE to implement and locally monitor the Dibba Rock project baseline.
This role will enable you to understand the theory behind project baseline and allow you to learn how to take the appropriate photos at the correct location.
Prerequisites are open water diver and RAID Ecological Diver qualifications as well as underwater photography experience.