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Ship wreck threatens marine ecosystem

The picture here is a ship wreck close to Bishop Koete RTC

A ship wreckage close to Bishop Koete Rural Training Centre, in Central Province is threatening the surrounding marine ecosystem.

The risk is due to the metal rusting away, releasing the chemicals which contain poison to the underwater ecosystems.

A visit by Island Sun last week discovered a number of sunken ships along the area between Taroniara and Bishop Koete RTC.

Giving his concern, Deputy Principal of Bishop Koete RTC Mr Casper Kuria said the wreckage is causing a pending environmental disaster for the island’s diverse marine ecosystem more especially the mangrove and reefs where people depends to find foods like fish and mud shell.

He adds that other most pressing concern is the safety of fish and other foods on the reefs close to the wreckage.

Mr Kuria said tonnes of rusted iron from the corroding wreckage posed a major hazard to the coral reefs and their habitats.

He told this paper that the reefs are part of the communities’ livelihood providing foods for the communities and that people are now afraid of consuming fish caught close to the wreckage in fear of their health.

Mr Kuria said coral reefs are the ”rainforests” of the ocean and that they are ecologically important ecosystems, with a high biodiversity that serves as a storage bank of rich genetic resources.

Besides the environmental concerns he said there are financial hazards that required to deal with these shipwrecks.

Mr Kuria said collective efforts from responsible authorities is important to address the issue and at the same time securing the health and welfare of communities concerned.

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