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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, September 12, 2006

NCL cruise ships teach reef etiquette

By Lynda Arakawa
Advertiser Staff Writer


NCL’s public service announcement on protecting Hawaiçi’s coral reefs can be downloaded at www.forthesea.com

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NCL America has begun broadcasting public service announcements on protecting Hawai'i's coral reefs aboard its three cruise ships.

The public service announcement, "Hawaii Reef Etiquette," is broadcast in 4,000 stateroom televisions aboard NCL America's Pride of Aloha, Pride of America and the Pride of Hawai'i. The three U.S.-flagged cruise ships sail seven-day tours around the Islands and carry more than 8,000 passengers a week combined.

The seven-minute video, made by Big Island-based filmmaker Ziggy Livnat, teaches visitors how to enjoy and preserve Hawai'i's coral reef system.

"NCL America is certain that if all our passengers know about the increasing threats to coral reefs, they would be inspired to support positive change," said Robert Kritzman, NCL America executive vice president and managing director of Hawai'i operations. "That is why this PSA is important. It provides recreational divers, snorkel enthusiasts and swimmers alike an opportunity to learn more about the coral reefs that they love, and to actively participate in saving them from damage and destruction."

Livnat began offering the public service video to tourism-related companies at no cost this year.

Companies that use the video include Outrigger Hotels & Resorts, which runs the public service announcement on its in-room channels in Waikiki. Aloha Airlines also shows the educational video to passengers on its flights from the Mainland.

The video was partly funded by grants from public and private organizations such as the Hawai'i Community Foundation, the Snorkel Bob Foundation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Livnat said he also received a grant from the Hawai'i Tourism Authority to make a Japanese-language version of the video, which will be available in about a month.

Livnat said he has been involved with underwater film-making and conservation for more than 12 years. He said he was motivated to make a friendly, "non-preachy" public service video about Hawai'i's coral reef after he moved to the Big Island four years ago and saw tourists stepping on coral and bothering turtles.

"Most of them didn't know they were causing damage," Livnat said. "If we don't tell them, how do we expect them to know?"

Reach Lynda Arakawa at larakawa@honoluluadvertiser.com.