Monday, 27 March, 2017

Ministry to check damage to Raja Ampat coral reefs

What the coral reef looked like before and after What the coral reef looked like before and after
Garry Little | 16 March, 2017, 00:30

"The damage caused by boat anchors like this one is already serious enough, but the blockage of a liner in the reefs reaches a level never equaled", said the site.

This case has provoked strong criticism within the local tourism industry, highly dependent on the wonders of nature in Raja Ampat, which means the four kings in Indonesia.

The damage caused by a British-owned cruise ship that accidentally ran aground on a pristine Indonesian coral reef could total more than $18 million, according to academics and environmental groups working in the region.

Some (like the Caledonian Sky) are tour company vessels, others are privately owned.

Indonesian foreign ministry spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir said that the devastation of the reef "will not be tolerated".

Local official Arif Havas Oegroseno said a task force has been has been formed to address the damage.

'The damage is huge and acute.

"The recovery takes at least 10 years", Ricardo said on Tuesday, March 14. Although its location is rather isolated and there is few infrastructure available, every year a considerable amount of tourists visit the area to enjoy Raja Ampat's rich natural beauty and diversity.

Stay Raja Ampat, a website that links tourists up with homestays, wrote on its Facebook page: 'How can this happen?

Victor Nikijuluw, the marine programme director at Conservational International Indonesia, told AFP: 'This is a very, very big loss for us'. They said that the hit affected several endemic reefs that are unique to Raja Ampat. They found out that the episode destroyed the marine's habitat especially the eight coral species discovered in the reef, which include the stony Acropora, Porites, Montipora and Stylophora family.

Mr Tapilatu said: 'A tugboat from Sorong city was deployed to help refloat the cruise ship, which is something that shouldn't have happened because it damaged the reef even worse. "We are now finishing the report and will submit our recommendations to the district office next week".

This is because of the special biodiversity of the reef. "It will take decades to restore the reefs". "Unfortunately, there will not be any moves for coral revival until we get the money", he added.

"Noble Caledonia is firmly committed to protection of the environment, which is why it is imperative that the reasons for it are fully investigated, understood and any lessons learned incorporated in operating procedures", part of the statement read.

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