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Conservation is Good for Business in North Bali

Biorock Reef Restoration Project in North Bali a Winner for Tourism and Local Fishermen


Bali News: Conservation is Good for Business in North Bali
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(11/2/2012)

The State News Agency Antara reports that “Biorock Central” – a project for nurturing and growing new coral reef formations at Pemuteran, North Bali is viewed as having the potential of attracting tourists and providing employment to the local population.

Komang Astika, the operational manager for Biorock at Pemuteran said: “Foreign tourists who stay at resorts in Pemuteran are sure to see the Biorock while snorkeling of diving. This is the largest center for the cultivation of man-made coral reefs in the world.”

Biorock is grown by placing small piece of living coral on underwater racks that are stimulated with low levels of electricity that result in rapid coral growth. Pemuteran is currently home to 72 underwater structures where coral is being grown over a 2-hectare area,

Recently the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) honored the Biorock project at Pemuteran for its pioneering work in environmental conservancy.

The most recent Biorock project at Pemuteran began in 2012 as an effort to restore reefs destroyed by local fishermen using underwater explosives. A declining underwater environment in the North Bali area was made worse by a “whitening” and death of the remaining coral structures due to global warming. As a result, fishermen found it increasingly difficult to obtain fish close to home, compelling them to sail further and further in search of catches.

With the introduction of Biorock, the fish populations are returning to the oceans at Pemuteran living and feeding among the newly established reef. “Fishermen who once obtained 2 kilograms of fish now harvest Rp. 10 kilograms,” explained Komang.

The growing coral reef of Pemuteran is also supporting a network of small resorts used by visiting tourist. Komang said most tourists come from Europe, Japan, South Korean, U.S.A. and Canada.

An estimated 50 tourists travel to Pemuteran each week to swim, snorkel and dive at the Briorock development zone. One tourist from Perth, Western Australia said that she had made two visits to the Biorock project, wants to donate to the project and would like to spend her remaining days after retirement in North Bali.

Bank ANZ had recently donated funds to help grow more Biorock structures at Pemuteran.

Some of the manmade coral structures at Pemuteran have adopted the shape of bicycles, Buddha’s and other shapes to be enjoyed by snorkelers and divers in waters that only average 6-7 meters in depth.

Related Articles

[A Shore Thing for North Bali Kids]

[Bali's Coral Reefs Under Threat]

[Biorock Workshop in North Bali]

[North Bali Reef Project – A Real Winner!]


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