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Kerala: CEOs to hold underwater conference on marine pollution, global warming

In a first of its kind, CEOs of five IT firms will hold an underwater conference in the Arabian Sea off the Kovalam beach and take a pledge to protect the ocean from pollution.

india Updated: Apr 21, 2017 17:33 IST
Ramesh Babu
Five CEOs IT firms in Kerala will hold a 30-minute  underwater conference in the  Arabian Sea on Monday  to raise awareness against growing marine pollution.  The CEOs have been training for a week for the underwater conference.
Five CEOs IT firms in Kerala will hold a 30-minute underwater conference in the Arabian Sea on Monday to raise awareness against growing marine pollution. The CEOs have been training for a week for the underwater conference.(HT Photo)

Chief executive officers (CEOs) of five IT firms are set to take their message against marine pollution and global warming to a new level with an underwater conference in the Arabian Sea on Monday.

At the 30-minute conference near the famous beach resort of Kovalam, the CEOs will take a pledge to protect the ocean and marine life.

Armed with scuba gear and other gadgets, the CEOs will descend at least six to seven metres into the sea for the conference. After the meeting they will take a pledge and sign a memorandum to protect ocean and marine life. They will also release a logo as part of their “ocean love” campaign. For the underwater conference, the CEOs have been training for the past week.

Their underwater conference assumes much significance in the wake of a recent global report that termed seas near Mumbai, Kerala and Andaman and Nicobar Islands as the most polluted in the world. The report also said most of the plastic and other debris in the sea originate from inland. Besides affecting marine biodiversity, pollution poses a big threat to people who live close to the sea, said the report prepared by three eminent world bodies.

Read more: Sea near Mumbai among the most polluted in the world: Global study

“Sea pollution is rising at an alarming level. Our endeavour is to make the public aware of the dangers posed by littering especially the unscientific disposal of plastic,” said Raja Gopaal Iyer, CEO of Uday Samudra Group, one of the main organisers of the event. Iyer will also participate in the underwater meeting.

After the conference, details will be posted on the Facebook page of the Kerala Tourism Department. “I am really excited. I hope such attempts will help send a right message,” said Hema Menon of UST Global, one of the participants.

Other tech firms include Neologix and SKHF, two IT firms based in Thiruvananthapuram Technopark. Kerala Tourism, Kovalam Surfing Club and Swacch Bharat are co-partners.

Iyer said on World Ocean Day on June 8, a club will be launched (Beach and Marine Environment Protection Club) roping in many hotels on the beach stretching from Kanyakumari to Kasargode. “At least 40 hotels have joined the club. We will regularly clean beaches and river fronts to ensure that litter won’t enter seas,” he said adding that after gauging its success the club will cover the entire coastal belt of the country.

While the CEOs’ meet is unique, it is not the first time such an event will take place. In October 2009, the Maldives government made an attention-grabbing plea for climate change action by holding the world’s first underwater cabinet meeting.

According to a recent report of the World Economic Forum at least 12.7 metric tonne of plastic end up in the sea each year and by 2050 there could be more plastic in the sea than fish.