107. A look back at dive magazines in March 2020 plus Wet Notes, new, information and commentary

Members of the United Nations recently approved the High Seas Treaty. This treaty if successful will protect two-thirds of our oceans.

Norway and Japan continue to hunt whales. Norway killed 560 whales in 2022, the highest in six years. This at a time when the demand for whale meat continues to drop around the world.

The University of Miami recently deployed two new artificial reef structures off of Miami Beach as part of their EcoReef program.

REEF has released their 2024 REEF Survey Trips. They have a very full schedule that will take you all around the world. You can get more information on their website along with availability and pricing.

Fourth Element is a leader in scuba diving exposure protection along with other new innovative products. They are also a fierce advocate for the environment and the oceans with their Ocean Positive initiative.

Commentary –

What is the state of the dive industry? Hopefully we will get a little insight when the results of the State of the Industry survey is completed. Perhaps we will get some data on the long-term sustainability for the local dive shop model. It seems like we hear about more and more dive shops closing after being in business for a very long time. It doesn’t seem that there are opportunities to sell the businesses perhaps because the model is too difficult to maintain. A local dive shop must pull all of the fragments of the scuba industry together and take a great deal of risk. When local dive shops close, local divers are left without many options and may tend to fade away from diving plus we no longer have a pipeline for new divers.

In March 2020, the scuba magazines were filled with optimism. I’ll take you back to the first quarter of 2020 and discuss how Alert Diver from Divers Alert Network, The Undersea Journal from the Professional Association of Diving Instructors and Dive Center Business from Dive Training Magazine. Dive travel, training and conservation were front and center. The industry was looking forward to a great year with economic indicators all pointing upward.