These divers and boat-crew work with the Marine Management Organisations and other authorities in England, Scotland and Wales “to ensure that ghost-fishing equipment is removed safely, legally and without harm to the environment or wildlife”.
Three RIBs are assigned year-round to the campaign, fitted with 3D sonar scanners to pinpoint wrecks and help locate and identify seabed obstructions.
The course lasts two days and includes four dives with theory classes in between. Candidates need to be qualified to SDI Advanced Adventurer or equivalent level, be over 21 and able to show that they have carried out at least 100 logged dives.
Successful completion of the course qualifies them to dive with the Sea Shepherd Ghostnet team.
“We have about 15 volunteers at present, and there will be no limit on numbers accepted for training, because divers will come and go,” Sea Shepherd’s Ghostnet Dive Co-ordinator Tony Land told Divernet. “Also, we can have different crews located in different areas.”
Land said that Sea Shepherd would later be looking at “rolling the course out across Europe to other Sea Shepherd chapters”.
Interested divers can learn more about the UK Ghostnet campaign here and contact Land about undertaking the course at firstname.lastname@example.org