By Jerry Adiguna, The Jakarta Pos
As we release the air from our Buoyancy Control Device (BCD) and begin our descent to the deep, I realize that we are monitoring life at the bottom of the sea.
The picture becomes clearer as we embark on the process to see up close how researchers collect data for the monitoring expedition.
After a long era of bombing, poisoning and trolling fishing systems without any serious surveillance effort on the part of the local authority, the condition of the corals around the Kei Kecil waters in southeast Maluku has suffered.
Once filled with rich coral and sea life, destructive fishing practices by irresponsible people have caused severe destruction at the bottom of the sea.
A monitoring and diving expedition was held recently by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Indonesia together with marine scientists from the Indonesian Reef Check Foundation, the Southeast Sulawesi Marine and Fishery Office, the Tual Fishing State Polytechnic and Pattimura University.
The diving was taken as part of efforts to restore the once rich marine life in the waters of Kei Island.
Luckily, with a recent shift in government regulation, the condition has changed.
And with the help of civil society and non government organizations, such as the WWF, the nasty, non-sustainable practice of fishing by the people has gradually diminished.
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