The Green Fins Award is awarded to the marine tourism operation best achieving the only internationally recognised environmental standard for marine tourism.
The Reef-World Foundation — the international coordinator of the UN Environment Programme’s Green Fins initiative — is delighted to announce the winner of the Green Fins Award 2023 — Evolution Beach and Dive Resort in Malapascua, Philippines.
The esteemed annual award recognises the Green Fins Member with the lowest environmental impact, as demonstrated by an assessment of business practice conducted within the last 12 months across 75 diving hotspots in 14 countries. This year, the award made a return at Asia Dive Expo (ADEX) 2023 in Singapore after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the last award was presented at ADEX in 2020.
The winner was identified from the network of hundreds of Green Fins Members around the world through a rigorous and robust assessment of environmental business practices. To be eligible for the award, the operator must have had its latest assessment conducted within the last 12 months.
As 2023’s Green Fins Award winner, Evolution Beach and Dive Resort is globally recognised as the top Green Fins Member. This means that they operate in compliance with the Green Fins Code of Conduct and have exceptional environmental performance every day at their dive resort. The Green Fins Code of Conduct is the only internationally recognised environmental standard for marine tourism.
Chloe Harvey, Director at The Reef-World Foundation, said: “It’s such a pleasure to recognise the team at Evolution with this award. Their Green Fins membership journey started back in 2012, and ever since then, Matt, David and the Evolution staff team have been pivotal in Green Fins programme development. They are not only an exemplary sustainable dive operation, but also an incredibly valuable voice in our network, helping to drive the collective global industry towards a more sustainable future. THANK YOU EVOLUTION!”
Evolution Beach and Dive Resort is a PADI 5-star Dive Resort that also provides Technical Diving International (TDI) tech dive training based in Malapascua Island — the infamous island for its thresher sharks sightings. They have been a Green Fins Member since 2012, and their steps to improve sustainability practices, which have resulted in this recognition, have included but are not limited to:
- Preventing toxic chemicals such as used oil, cleaning products and sunscreen from entering the ocean
- Consistently providing training for their staff and guests on best environmental practices
- Taking part in regular marine life monitoring and data reporting
- Disposing of all waste responsibly
- Including environmental information in pre-dive briefings
Matt Reed, co-owner of Evolution Beach and Dive Resort, said: ”The last few years have shown that uncertainty is always just around the corner. This has made us more determined than ever at Evolution to ensure that what we can control is done to the highest ‘best practice’ standards. We cannot stop wars and pandemics, but we can protect and defend our tiny speck of the globe.”
The Green Fins Award is organised annually by The Reef-World Foundation and has been hosted by Underwater360 at the Asia Dive Expo since 2018.
In the Philippines, Green Fins is implemented by the Coastal and Marine Division under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Biodiversity Management Bureau (DENR-BMB) with support from local NGOs.