The numbers don’t lie: 27 per cent of the world’s coral reefs have been lost, with 60 per cent projected to be destroyed over the next 30 years*. Moreover, 34 per cent of coral reefs and 600 reef-building coral species call Southeast Asia home, and one billion people depend on coral reefs for food and income through fishing.
It’s a situation that ONE°15 Marina doesn’t take lightly. The mission of going greener is all the more crucial, given that ONE°15 Marina Sentosa Cove is the first marina in Southeast Asia to be awarded a Fish Friendly Marina accreditation by the Marina Industries Association.
As part of our 11th anniversary this year, the Club has embarked on a project to safeguard the beautiful marine life in our waters.
Called the ONE°15 Marina – SeaKeepers Asia Coral Garden Project, this initiative to protect the marine eco-system and provide a natural habitat for existing sea life is done in conjunction with our key partner, Tropical Marine Science Institute of NUS, and sponsors, The International SeaKeepers Society Asia, Audi Singapore and SC Global Developments. Our long-term vision is to plant corals in the marina and become an aquatic treasure trove for everyone to explore.
On 6 October, guests and the media gathered on board the Hye Seas II superyacht. Mr Jack Long, SUTL Enterprise Group General Manager, kicked off the day with an opening address, where he spoke of the many eco-initiatives the Club has championed in the past decade, including the mussels cultivation Project Perna and the bi-annual marina clean up. “We are excited to work with the Tropical Marine Science Institute of NUS on the Coral Garden,” Mr Long said. “This research work will contribute to restoring 60 per cent of coral reefs believed to have been lost in Singapore waters from land reclamation over the years.”
Guest-of-Honour, Nee Soon GRC MP, Mr Louis Ng also gave a rousing speech, highlighting that more can be done to save our planet. He also feels strongly that commercial entities can contribute so much more to help the environment, and views efforts such as the Coral Garden initiative by ONE°15 Marina as a great start. He hopes that more companies will come together and do their part for the environment.
More than 20 invited guests also witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI) of NUS and ONE°15 Marina Sentosa Cove. The Areas of Cooperation between TMSI & ONE°15 Marina include:
(a) Enhancing marine biodiversity and the development of a coral garden within the marina using reef restoration approaches;
(b) Allocating appropriate areas for this research and development initiative, facilitating access and providing logistical support for TMSI’s research team members by ONE°15 Marina; and
(c) Allocating researchers to conduct research work and coral restoration activities and share the results with the marina for publicity dissemination by TMSI.
After the signing ceremony, a video of the coral planting effort was screened. Thereafter, guests were escorted to the coral nursery to observe the corals, which were planted with the help of NUS Reef Ecology Lab.
At the Eco-Exhibition, several environmental organisations also presented exhibits about the effects of water and plastic pollution. Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) displayed panels showing the importance of coral reefs, sea grass, coastal forest, and the threats the marine ecosystem is facing and what can be done to save the environment.
The main attraction was a life-sized sperm whale skeleton from Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum that was set up in the middle of the ballroom, where both kids and adults stood in awe of. There were also educational posters on the causes of the sperm whale’s death and how the public can do their part to save the water environment.
Besides meaningful education through the exhibits, there were also engaging games for kids to learn about the environment. To help the young children understand how to make the right decision to protect the ocean, Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) taught these young participants how to choose the right certified sustainable seafood via crossword puzzles.
The day marked a memorable moment for the Club. As any lover of the ocean would know, a good day at sea wouldn’t be complete without crystal clear waters brimming with life. Through various efforts, the Club hopes to keep the waters of the marina as pristine as they are today and encourage a thriving sea life. *Numbers according to WWF.