21 Apr Surveillance Strengthens Enforcement of Nusa Penida MPA Zoning Rules
The surveillance team of the Bali Marine Conservation Management Unit and the Water Police Unit of Klungkung District, supported by CTC,
conducted a routine resource use monitoring (RUM) survey in the Nusa Penida Marine Protected Area (MPA) on April 21, 2021. During the survey, the team found at least six fishing boats that violated the MPA zoning regulations by using a compressor to enhance fishers’ ability to catch lobsters and other fish by allowing them to remain underwater for long periods of time. Under the Nusa Penida MPA rules, only sustainable and traditional fishing methods are allowed to be used in designated areas in the MPA.
The team encountered compressor boats operating in the MPA’s Core Zone of Atuh (1 fisherman), the Marine Tourism Zone of Bunga Mekar (4 fishermen) and the Traditional Fishing Zone of Sekartaji (1 fisherman). The boats came from mainland Bali areas such as Serangan and Tanjung Benoa.
According to the fishermen, they were looking for adult lobsters as brood stock for a hatchery and aquaculture business in Serangan. Illegal compressor fishing has been identified as a key threat to both local fisheries and the marine biodiversity of the site. As fishers who use this method are likely to walk on the seabed, they can damage and break coral, a the key habitat for marine animals. In addition, compressor diving for fish poses negative health risks to fishers, who are often unaware of dangers such as decompression sickness, which can be fatal.
No penalties were imposed on the violators encountered during the survey. The team only admonished the fishermen and informed them of the regulations regarding sustainable and environmentally friendly fisheries. According to Law No. 45 of 2009 on Fisheries, the use of compressors – together with other destructive fishing gears such as trawls, is prohibited and illegal. However, the police asked the boat owners to report to the police office at Klungkung, and to the office of the Bali Marine Affairs and Fisheries Agency on the next day. The implementation of the RUM survey is part of CTC’s support and assistance to increase the capacity of personnel of the Bali Marine Conservation Management Unit in the Nusa Penida MPA. In the future, it is hoped that each of the MPA personnel will be able to carry out various surveys independently, including reef health monitoring and socioeconomic surveys, which provide results that can be used to evaluate how effectively the MPA is being managed.
In addition to the survey, CTC also held meetings with various local communities and dive operators in Nusa Penida such as Blue Corner Dive,Bali Hai, Quicksilver, Nuansa Pulau, Reef Flex and Indo Ocean Project, to discuss coral restoration activities. The results of the meeting
Nevertheless, all stakeholders agreed to provide updates and submit regular reports on their activities at least once a year to the Bali Marine Conservation Unit in Nusa Penida. In general, the results of the meetings and surveys highlighted that the marine tourism sector in Nusa Penida has not fully recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently, coastal communities rely on their livelihoods from capture fisheries and seaweed farming. The communites in Nusa Penida have committed to protect the sea and its marine ecosystems during this pandemic so that the underwater tourism attractions will be preserved for visitors once tourism activities are allowed in the future.
Photo Credit: Kasman/CTC