Indonesia Threatened to Lose 2,000 Small Islands

Indonesia as the largest archipelago country in the world has 14,752 islands with 95,181 kilometers (km) and 5.6 million square kilometers (km2) of coastline.

Of the total island, there are 10 thousand small islands that have the potential of coastal natural resources are very large and prospective as a development asset.

"However, it is estimated that there are 2,000 small islands that will be submerged in 2030," said Professor of Fishery and Marine Science Faculty of Bogor Agricultural University (FPIK-IPB) Prof. Dr. Ir Dietriech Geoffrey Bengen, DAA, DEA, told reporters ahead of scientific pre-oration At Campus IPB Baranangsiang, Bogor, West Java, Friday (21/07/2017).

He expressed the prediction based on his research results related to the impacts of climate change that cause sea level rise.

"If the small islands of such terrain are not well maintained, such as damaged coral reefs, damaged mangroves, or destructive fishing, I would expect Indonesia to lose two thousand small islands that could potentially drown by 2030. It could even be before That is the closest to us, Thousand Island, because the island is a plain, "he said.

According to him, the small islands have great potential but the people in the islands are still low economic life. The reason is because the location is far from the mainland, the market location is far away. Sources of fish are many but can not be sold in the market because there is no adequate facilities and infrastructure.

"Fish flesh is easy to rot The fish must be preserved into presto fish, salted fish or frozen There must be cold storage so the freshness of the fish can be maintained But the people in small islands do not have the ingredients So the potential is big but economically the society is not good, "He said.

In addition to limited facilities and infrastructure and remote locations, other factors are the low level of education and our alignment or the government towards the development of small islands.

"Our orientation so far has been the focus on land development.The paradigm has not changed so the marine potential is marginalized," Geoffrey said.

He said one solution would be to change the paradigm and the sea should be a unifying and driving force for development. The trick with minawisata or tourism engagement.

Thus, he said, fishermen do not have to go to the market to sell fish, but buyers who must be imported to the islands with tourism, namely by combining fisheries and ecotourism.

According to him, integrated development can be on one island or several islands. The concept of development is different between island plains and hill islands. Island plains can only be 30-50% used as a tourist attraction, the rest for conservation. Hilly Island can be much larger because it is not vulnerable to climate change.

"Small islands can be utilized, because around this island we can still find good coral reefs, etc. Of course with the arrangement in such a way," he said. (SN)

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