Working with organisations such as Reef World and Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) , our enthusiastic team of wildlife lovers and keen divers regularly help with activities such as beach cleans and retrieving ghost fishing nets.
What began as our original project to eliminate single use plastic from our packaging by World Oceans Day 2020 has evolved and developed into a project involving the global dive community.
Companies, brands, dive centres and instructors are all pledging to make a difference in their own practices regarding single use plastic, from changing what they sell to organising underwater beach clean ups. This is the power of collaboration – together we can make a difference.
The Global Ghost Gear Initiative is another great example of the power of collaboration. There are so many organisations involved with the clear-up, prevention and recycling of Ghost Gear around the world.
From Ghost Fishing to Conservation International, Net-Works to Interface, ECONYL® and government departments, a concerted effort is needed to deal with this threat as effectively as possible.
The GGGI is a collaboration of many of these organisations and fourth element is part of it, with Paul Strike, one of our founders on the steering committee and part of the team coordinating these efforts.
Reef World International is the organisation behind the Green Fins programme for environmentally friendly practices in dive centres.
A partner organisation of UN Environment, Reef World is at the epicentre of research and policy making that will help to protect our coral reefs and wider ocean environment.
We support their volunteers with equipment and are working on several initiatives to disseminate their messages through our packaging and other fundraising campaigns.
The Olive Ridley Project (ORP) is based in the Maldives where the organisation works to save turtles, often ensnared in ghost fishing gear or injured in other ways, rehabilitate them and release them back into the wild.
The ORP is also a prolific educator – with volunteers briefing divers and other visitors to some of the islands’ resorts about the importance of not disturbing these animals when they come to shore to lay their eggs.
Fourth Element has worked with the ORP for several years, supporting fund and awareness raising events as well as designing and producing their range of limited edition clothing.
Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF) came to us to create an OceanPositive UV shield using recycled ocean bound plastics, for its volunteers, staff and for sale to support its work.
CRF is the largest coral reef restoration organisation in the world founded in response to the wide-spread loss of dominant coral species on the Florida Reef Tract.
They developed a method for “farming” and “out-planting” colonies of stag-horn and elk-horn corals by hanging finger-sized fragments to grow on Coral Trees™. In just a few months, these colonies are large enough to be planted further out on the reef. To date, they have planted more than 66,000 corals back onto the Florida Reef Tract, making this one of the most successful restoration project of any kind, anywhere.
We’ve worked with World Animal Protection for the last five years, joining their fledgling Global Ghost Gear Initiative, and later collaborating with the UK retailer Fat Face and its charitable foundation to raise thousands of pounds to support the charity’s work, both in the ocean and the wider environment.
We’ve teamed up with Bite-Back to champion the cause of one of our favourite marine creatures, the shark.
The UK-based charity is dedicated to shark and marine conservation and it seeks to educate people about the issues facing not only sharks, but fish-life as a whole and aims to empower its supporters to help change the way fish is consumed.
The charity’s goal is to encourage retailers to put conservation before commerce at the same time as it is working to ‘devalue’ a dead shark by ending demand and reducing profit opportunities for all shark and shark-derived products in the UK.
We designed the “Shark Invested Waters” t-shirt for Bite-Back, and donate £3 of every sale to the charity.