Observations from the Indonesia Institute of Sciences (LIPI) in 1,135 station until 2013 find 30.4% from 2.5 million hectares of Indonesia’s coral area are in damaged condition. These result presented by researchers from the Research Center for Oceanography, LIPI, Dr. Giyanto in the discussion entitled “Research Ecosystems of coral reefs in Indonesia” in Jakarta (17/4).
This monitoring applied in 15 cities / regency through a scheme Coral Reef Rehabilitation and Management Program (COREMAP) since 1998. Giyanto said, there are currently 15 COREMAP locations managed by LIPI. Eight locations in the West: Central Tapanuli, Nias, South Nias, Mentawai, Natuna, Riau Islands, Lingga and Batam city. While seven central and eastern region: Pangkep, Selayar, Wakatobi, Selayar, Sikka, Biak Numfor and Raja Ampat.
Further, LIPI Marine Researcher, Prof. Suharsono explained that the coral damage happened due to natural and human factors. “What to worry is damaged by human behaviour. If the damage derived from natural factors such as tsunami or hurricane, coral can recover in span of eight years,” he said. Suharsono give an example, coral damaged by volcanic eruptions in Banda in 1987, totally recovered only within seven years. While the damage caused by human behaviour, as bombings and pollution occurring in Kepulauan Seribu unlikely to be able to be normal again.
Answering efforts can be done to protect coral reefs ahead, he explained, there are at least five steps being tried by LIPI and stakeholder in the region. These steps are: research and monitoring, increasing public awareness, community-based management, institutional strengthening, as well as law enforcement.