Asia Is Trawling for a Deadly Fishing War


Growing tensions between Sri Lankan and Indian fishermen are just one signal of a looming conflict over the region’s depleted waters.

Photography by Karim Mostafa

June 16, 2017

THALVUPADU, Sri Lanka — Stanley Cruz, a fisher in this beachside village on the island of Mannar off Sri Lanka’s northwestern coast, stands with his bare feet in the sand, holding up a green net between his hands.

“This is the kind of net, you see. Last week, we lost many hundreds of these. Twelve of us fishers, when we went out to get them in the morning they were gone,” he says.

He points toward the waters behind him: the Palk Strait, a narrow body of water separating Sri Lanka from the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Cruz was out the night before, laying his nets in the sea, just like thousands of other fishers from both sides of the strait. But when he went to get them in the morning, they were gone. Tiếp tục đọc

Indonesian police foil attempt to smuggle 200,000 lobster eggs into Singapore: Reports


File photo of a lobster. (Photo: Reuters)

JAKARTA: Indonesian authorities foiled an attempt to illegally export more than 200,000 lobster eggs into Singapore through Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, reported the Jakarta Post on Sunday (Jun 11).

The suspects had attempted to deliver a big part of the goods via a Garuda Indonesia flight to Singapore.

According to, Indonesia’s National Police Special Crimes Directorate Chief Brigadier General Purwadi Arianto said: “We confiscated 208,756 lobster eggs inside eight suitcases.” Tiếp tục đọc

PM cracks down on illegal fishing


Update: May, 29/2017 – 15:00

Illustrative photo: Fishing vessels near the Sa Kỳ Port in central Quảng Ngãi Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hùng
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has requested country leaders to heighten their focus on preventing Vietnamese fishermen from illegally harvesting seafood in foreign waters.

In official order No 732 issued on Sunday, the Prime Minister acknowledged that the situation is ongoing and has been getting more serious since the end of 2015 in the central provinces of Quảng Ngãi, Bình Định, and Bình Thuận, as well as southern provinces of Kiên Giang, Cà Mau, Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu, Bến Tre and Tiền Giang.
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Bottom trawling a threat to the ocean, fishermen


Update: May, 15/2017 – 16:48

Similar to using boats, a manual form of bottom trawling – which also makes use of huge nets that can cover a portion of nearshore sea – can drag in every form of sea life in that area, and a still common in the central province of Nghệ An. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyễn Văn Nhật
CENTRAL REGION — Bottom trawling is a particularly destructive method of fishing, in which huge weighted nets are dragged on the sea floor, catching everything in their path.Nguyễn Văn Việt, a fisherman from Hoài Nhơn District in the province of Bình Định, said locals here considered bottom trawlers to be ‘sea demons.’

“The setup is either one trawler or two trawlers running in tandem, dragging a huge net with very fine holes, scooping up fish of all sizes. Other than the fact that all sea creatures are caught and bycatches are discarded, the ecosystem along the sea floor is irreparably damaged,” Việt said. Tiếp tục đọc

New Straits Times
(File pix) Mexican tuna is on display at a fish market in Mexico City, Mexico April 25, 2017. The United Nations is marking the first World Tuna Day with calls to conserve one of the globe’s most popular fish to be caught and eaten. REUTERS

UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations is marking the first World Tuna Day with calls to conserve one of the globe’s most popular fish to be caught and eaten.

General Assembly President Peter Thomson said Tuesday that tuna plays a critical role “in sustainable development, food security, economic opportunity, and livelihoods of people around the world.”

He says tuna species, which are highly migratory, account for 20 percent of the value of all fish caught and over 8 percent of all internationally traded seafood.

The former Fijian ambassador adds in a statement: “Regrettably, with the decline in the health of the ocean, the fish stocks including tuna face growing threats and an uncertain future.”

The General Assembly established World Tuna Day in December to reinforce its importance to nations around the globe. –AP

Scientists warn about danger to VN coral reefs

Last update 10:15 | 16/02/2017

VietNamNet Bridge – Coral reefs, which provide a habitat for aquatic creatures, are increasingly in danger because of human exploitation activities.

vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, TPP, US President Obama, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, vn news, Vietnam breaking news, coral reefs, con dao, Binh Dinh

Binh Dinh province has 134km of coastline with coastal waters surrounded by small islands and a diverse ecosystem comprising coral reefs, seagrass beds and aquatic animals.

The province is rich in aquatic resources with more than 500 fish species, 38 of which have high economic value. Pelagic fish accounts for 65 percent of total reserves, about 38,000 tons, while ground fish accounts for 35 percent of total reserves, or 22,000 tons.

The province has the fleet of 7,339 fishing boats with total capacity of 980,838 CV. The sea resources and biodiversity in the locality bring a comfortable life to local people.

However, Tran Van Phuc, deputy director of Binh Dinh Agriculture Department, said the environment and local biodiversity have been seriously degrading. Tiếp tục đọc

ASEAN Could Take Lead on Plastic Crisis in Asia

Asia Foundation

April 19, 2017

By John J. Brandon

April 22 marks Earth Day around the globe. I was in 8th grade when Earth Day was first commemorated in 1970, and to mark the day, I participated in annual trash clean-up events at my school. At that time, my world was pretty much the town where I grew up in New Jersey and I didn’t think very much about the rest of the world, I just wanted my neighborhood to be clean. But eight years later, my world expanded when I went to live and work in Bangkok. I vividly remember being struck by the amount of plastic bags, bottles, and wrapping on the streets and in the city’s once-many canals. Now, after four decades of traveling in Southeast Asia, I have witnessed the plague of the plastic bag across pretty much every major city in the region.

Manila Bay garbage

A polluted Manila Bay. It is estimated that some plastic products take more than 400 years to decompose, especially in deep waters. Photo/Flickr user Adam Cohn

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‘Zero recovery’ for Great Barrier Reef corals in back-to-back bleaching

Researchers said last month they were detecting another round of mass bleaching this year after a severe event in 2016, and their fears were confirmed after aerial surveys of the entire 2,300km long bio-diverse reef.

Last year, the northern areas of the World Heritage-listed reef were hardest hit, with the middle-third now experiencing the worst effects. Tiếp tục đọc

Bình Thuận temporarily bans mollusc and bivalve exploitation

vietnam news

Update: March, 29/2017 – 17:30

Bình Thuận has issued a temporary ban on the exploitation of molluscs and bivalves across its sea waters. — Photo

BÌNH THUẬN — The southern central province of Bình Thuận has issued a temporary ban on the exploitation of molluscs and bivalves across its sea waters as part of an effort to protect and regenerate dwindling marine resources.

The ban will take effect from April 1 to July 31, restricting fishermen and organisations from gathering molluscs and bivalves, the local seafood specialties that include scallops and clams. Tiếp tục đọc

Phó thủ tướng: Mở đợt cao điểm tấn công ‘cát tặc’

VNExpress Thứ ba, 7/3/2017 | 21:00 GMT+7

Tình trạng khai thác cát sỏi trái phép diễn ra nhức nhối ở nhiều địa phương trên cả nước, tuy nhiên đến nay mới duy nhất thành phố Hà Nội truy tố hình sự được một vụ vi phạm.

Ngày 7/3, phát biểu tại cuộc họp về tình hình khai thác cát sỏi trái phép, Phó thủ tướng Trương Hòa Bình yêu cầu các lực lượng chức năng mở đợt cao điểm tấn công trấn áp tội phạm trong lĩnh vực này từ ngày 15/3 đến 1/6… Các bộ ngành liên quan cần tạm dừng cấp phép xuất khẩu cát nhiễm mặn tận thu từ các dự án xã hội hoá.

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Nguy cơ mất các bãi biển đẹp nhất Việt Nam

VE – Thứ bảy, 27/12/2014 | 09:45 GMT+7

Cửa Đại, một trong những bờ biển đẹp nhất Việt Nam có nguy cơ biến mất bởi hiện tượng xói lở diễn ra ngày càng nghiêm trọng, trong khi các giải pháp đưa ra chưa hiệu quả. Các bãi biển khác cũng trong tình cảnh tương tự.

hiều ngôi nhà chòi tại các khu nghỉ dưỡng bị sóng biển đánh sát vào tận móng.
Nước biển ngày càng lấn sâu vào đất liền ở Hội An khiến nhiều ngôi nhà chòi tại các khu nghỉ dưỡng bị đổ sụp. Ảnh: Tiến Hùng.

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Cát là lãnh thổ

Ảnh: Bảo Lâm

03/03/2017 07:55 GMT+7

TTO – Cát là tài nguyên vô giá, bởi nó là nền móng bảo vệ vững chắc lãnh thổ. Đừng để những thế hệ sau phải qua châu Phi nhập khẩu cát về dùng với giá đắt gấp nhiều lần thế hệ cha ông đem bán như hiện nay.

Sau hai tháng làm việc cật lực, loạt bài điều tra xuyên quốc gia “Đường đi của cát Việt ra nước ngoài” đã lên mặt báo phục vụ bạn đọc. Quá trình đi tìm đáp án của câu hỏi: “Tàu chở cát đi đâu?”, phóng viên Tuổi Trẻ đã phát hiện và phơi bày ra ánh sáng hàng loạt “bí mật” của lĩnh vực nạo vét, khai thác và xuất khẩu cát đã được giấu kín ít nhất từ năm 2013 đến nay. Tiếp tục đọc

Đường đi cát Việt ra nước ngoài – 5 kỳ

  • Kỳ 1: Đường đi cát Việt ra nước ngoài: Tàu chở cát đi đâu?
  • Kỳ 2: Đường đi cát Việt ra nước ngoài: Cát Việt bán giá bao nhiêu?
  • Kỳ 3: Cát Việt bán giá bèo, hải quan nghi vấn nhưng cho qua
  • Kỳ 4: Tìm sự thật các hợp đồng nhập khẩu cát ở Singapore
  • Cát Việt ra nước ngoài: “Bán” dự án, “xà xẻo” tài nguyên
Kỳ 1: Đường đi cát Việt ra nước ngoài: Tàu chở cát đi đâu?
01/03/2017 09:58 GMT+7

TTOSuốt hai tháng đầu năm 2017, chúng tôi đã theo dõi 40 chiếc tàu đến vùng biển tỉnh Kiên Giang, Khánh Hòa và Hà Tĩnh chở cát. Bốn doanh nghiệp xuất khẩu cát chỉ biết tàu đi Singapore nhưng không biết chính xác địa chỉ nào.

Đường đi cát Việt ra nước ngoài: Tàu chở cát đi đâu?
Hai tàu JS Bandol và Sheng Wang Hai bắt đầu rời vùng biển Phú Quốc đi Singapore giữa tháng 1-2017 – Ảnh: V.TR.

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Sand mining: the global environmental crisis you’ve probably never heard of

From Cambodia to California, industrial-scale sand mining is causing wildlife to die, local trade to wither and bridges to collapse. And booming urbanisation means the demand for this increasingly valuable resource is unlikely to let up

A boat is stranded on the Poyang Lake in east China.
A boat is stranded on the Poyang Lake in east China, site of one of the world’s biggest sand mines. Photograph: Xinhua/Barcroft Images

Times are good for Fey Wei Dong. A genial, middle-aged businessman based near Shanghai, China, Fey says he is raking in the equivalent of £180,000 a year from trading in the humblest of commodities: sand.

Fey often works in a fishing village on Poyang Lake, China’s biggest freshwater lake and a haven for millions of migratory birds and several endangered species. The village is little more than a tiny collection of ramshackle houses and battered wooden docks. It is dwarfed by a flotilla anchored just offshore, of colossal dredges and barges, hulking metal flatboats with cranes jutting from their decks. Fey comes here regularly to buy boatloads of raw sand dredged from Poyang’s bottom. He ships it 300 miles down the Yangtze River and resells it to builders in booming Shanghai who need it to make concrete.

The demand is voracious. The global urbanisation boom is devouring colossal amounts of sand – the key ingredient of concrete and asphalt. Shanghai, China’s financial centre, has exploded in the last 20 years. The city has added 7 million new residents since 2000, raising its population to more than 23 million. In the last decade, Shanghai has built more high-rises than there are in all of New York City, as well as countless miles of roads and other infrastructure. “My sand helped build Shanghai Pudong airport,” Fey brags. Tiếp tục đọc

Vietnam to punish officials over mass fish deaths

HANOI: Vietnam said on Wednesday (Feb 22) it will punish 11 senior officials for misconduct over a toxic waste dump last year that killed tonnes of fish in one of the country’s worst environmental disasters.

Taiwanese steel firm Formosa was blamed for the crisis that decimated livelihoods in coastal fishing communities in central Vietnam and was forced to pay $500 million in fines.

Fishermen and activists in authoritarian Vietnam have staged rare protests since the disaster and filed lawsuits demanding a fair share of compensation. Tiếp tục đọc