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Mozambican legal expert Carlos Serra Júnior has called for better conservation efforts in the Inhambane province archipelago.
Climate change and the negative result of human activities are causing environmental damage in the region. The Bazaruto archipelago is suffering from river erosion, and excess waste has led to the disappearance of marine species that are the focus of tourist attraction.
The Bazaruto archipelago is a destination of choice among tourists who visit Vilankulo – considered a “tourism zone of excellence”. However, climate change and human action risk costing the province visitors.
The island is threatened by rising sea levels, and the effects of erosion are already felt. Mozambican environmentalist Carlos Serra Júnior says the situation is critical. “We know that rising sea levels are a reality. There are several critical points in terms of erosion, that is a fact,” he says.
The environmentalist argues that “mitigation work” is needed to stop the threat. “Bazaruto Island is suffering a lot, especially in the lagoon region,” he says.
The Mozambican activist –cum-lawyer also calls for an inspectorate to safeguard the island’s the marine species, which are a major tourist attraction. “There is no doubt that there is work to be done” prohibiting the hunting or fishing of species that “are [supposedly] totally protected,” he says.
“If the inspectorate is not up to the challenge, we run the risk of losing some of these resources that are a fantastic attraction for the tourism industry,” he warns.
Rubbish is also a problem. Plastic, bottles and abandoned fishing nets litter the region’s beaches, and tortoise, whale, ray, manta and sharks populations are declining significantly in the archipelago.
Carlos Serra Júnior says that visitors and fishermen need to be sensitised.
“We must understand what is happening to the species because of the increase in the amount of plastic and other waste in the ocean, but also in areas close to human resettlement, because of the impact of the types of pollution. We need to work with our fishermen to create awareness,” he concludes.Source: Deutsche Welle