Displaying items by tag: Ocean
A new paper says that both shallow and deep-water coral reefs, even in remote areas, are impacted by plastic. Most of the larger items are from fishing “ghost gear” such as nets. Food wrappers and plastic bottles were also common.
Plastic is an “emerging threat” to reefs which have already been stressed by the impacts of climate change, pollution, and overfishing.
The study examined 84 reefs at more than 25 locations including uninhabited atolls and reefs at depths of 150 metres across the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans.
Anthropogenic debris was found in 77 out of the 84 reefs surveyed, including in some of Earth’s most remote and near-pristine reefs, such as in uninhabited central Pacific atolls.
The Comores, which together with Mauritius, Seychelles, and Madagascar form part of the group of island states in the Western Indian Ocean, is the worst-affected location with nearly 84,500 items of plastic in each square kilometre.
Pinheiro, H.T., MacDonald, C., Santos, R.G. et al. Plastic pollution on the world’s coral reefs. Nature 619, 311–316 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-023-06113-5
Cousin Island Special Reserve was the island famously bought for conservation by BirdLife International in 1968, and it is now managed by Nature Seychelles. I visited the island at the beginning of the year to inspect catastrophic coastal erosion that had occurred, and it was the first time I had seen anything like it since we took over management.
(Seychelles Nation) The beach is of paramount importance as it is the most important unique selling point of Seychelles. All agencies should play their roles and there should be better coordination between all stakeholders to make a difference in terms of beach management. This was said by the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, Didier Dogley, at the second multi-sectoral meeting – Beach control meeting – at the Botanical House yesterday.
Seychelles and the Sustainable Development Goals
I was at the first Earth Summit in Rio in 1992 where Sustainable Development was hailed by the world community as the silver bullet to solve society’s ills. But somehow Sustainable Development emerged as a construct with a largely terrestrial focus. I also attended the second Earth Summit, Rio+10, in South Africa where the movement to set up Green Economies mysteriously avoided speaking substantively about the oceans, despite our best efforts. Small Island Developing States (SIDS), sitting on small pieces of land seemingly “sea-locked” within large ocean territories, struggled with this concept of the Green Economy. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that were launched in 2001 compounded the problem as they were implemented largely using a land-based optic.