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Adelaide sea janitor on a month-long mission to clean up local waters

Adelaide dive instructor Kate Wilkins was so sick of seeing rubbish while diving, she decided to do something about it.

“I’m a scuba diver instructor, so I spend a lot of my time under water,” she told ABC Adelaide Drive.

“I see a lot of marine debris and fishing stuff that gets stuck down there.”

Ms Wilkins started the Sea Janitor Facebook and Instagram pages and plans to dive each day in February along Adelaide’s coastal waters to remove rubbish.

She said a lot of the rubbish under water was generally unseen and not a concern for most.

“A lot of things we think go in the bins [on land] actually end up in the oceans.”

Ms Wilkins said she would do additional dives each day, focused on collecting rubbish in a netted bag known as a catch bag.

“I wear gloves for any clean-up dives because many of the things are very sharp.

A man fishes off Henley Beach jetty.

“It’s going very well at the moment as I am collecting a lot of stuff — I wish I wasn’t, but I am.”

Ms Wilkins said she was targeting jetties that weren’t local dive haunts to make sure areas not often visited were also taken care of.

“Brighton and Glenelg jetties were often used for fishing but never for diving, so there is a lot of random stuff I have found.”

Gold bracelets, an electric scooter, bottles, cans, scissors, fishing equipment, sunglasses, scissor and toys have all found their way into her catch bag.

Ms Wilkins is also using the project to raise money for the charities Sea Shepherd and Project Aware.

“They both have data documenting cards, so I am documenting all of the things I am finding and reporting it them back to them.”

She said over the month she planned to dive some jetties more than once to remove as much rubbish as possible.

“I’m hoping towards the end of the month that I actually don’t find anything under the jetties, but we’ll have to see how that goes.”

Kate Wilkins prepares for a dive under Henley Beach jetty.

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