In April 2021, we started a collaboration in Bukti with the local fishermen who formed the NGO Pokmaswas Satya Bahari. Over the years the fishermen and the local community became worried about the condition of the Bukti coral reefs. Climate change and destructive fishing methods such as cyanide fishing for the aquarium trade deteriorated the local reefs. When a big ghost net was discovered on one of the reefs, contact was established with Coral Reef Care to team up and conserve the reef ecosystem. From then on, things went fast.
Three reefs have become No Take Zones. In this case this means there is no fishing allowed regardless of the fishing method. The reefs will be patrolled by the fishermen and demarcated with marker buoys. By transplanting corals on the damaged reefs we will speed up the restoration process. Another important part of the project is the monitoring of the reefs to check on ghost nets, debris, invasive species (e.g. Crown of Thorns, Drupella), etc.
To perform the monitoring and restoration tasks, four Bukti fishermen have been given dive courses by Coral Reef Care. The first protected reef was demarcated with buoys last June, the other two follow coming months. We also did a coral transplantation test on the east and west side of the reef that will be monitored coming months after which we can make a restoration planning.
In many places in Indonesia the waste problem is troubling. A lot of garbage is dumped in nature and often in river beds. After the first rains a lot of it enters the oceans, making it an ecological threat. Attention for the waste problem is incorporated in our awareness programs.
Our main goal is to establish more marine protected areas. Worldwide less than 3% is seriously protected and has enforcement in place. On the contrary, on land around 16% is a protected area. The Bukti project is extra special for us since it is conservation that offers full protection for the reef ecosystem.