Indonesia aims to create a network of “aquaculture villages”

The country’s fisheries ministry said it has already established six such villages and will add 130 more by the end of 2022, according to a report published by Mongabay. Villages will cultivate high-value aquaculture products, including shrimp, crab and seaweed, with the aim of boosting national exports, creating jobs and improving national food security.

Although the plans were widely welcomed, concerns were expressed about possible habitat degradation and pollution caused by farms – the destruction of carbon-rich mangrove forests being of particular concern. Over the past three decades, Indonesia has lost almost half of its mangrove area, according to the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR).

However, last year Indonesian President Widodo set an ambitious goal of replanting mangroves on 600,000 hectares of degraded coastline by 2024.

Abdul Halim, executive director of the Center for Maritime Studies for Humanity, told Mongabay that the government must also be able to address the waste management issues long associated with aquaculture farms, which typically dump waste into the sea or lakes. .