Friday, February 15, 2013

Mozambique - Faustian Pact?


And I cite.
Fishing for sustenance has long been a staple here, with few alternative sources of income. But it is an open secret that Chinese syndicates are supplying improved fishing nets, buying shark fins and manta ray "wing" tips and shipping them back to Asia, where there is increasing demand for delicacies such as shark fin soup. 

Nhamussua's nephew, Americo Gilamba, is 19 and has scant other career prospects. "We do it because we don't have a good job," he explained, standing in the small, sandy family settlement that includes huts made of reeds and coconut leaves. "We know it's not good and the Chinese are killing things that are not allowed to be killed, but we do it to survive and get some money. We don't want to have to steal from other people. 
If we were given an alternative, we would stop."
Great article - with one reservation.
Rather then the Chinese, this appears to be the result of criminal Chinese interests colluding with corrupt Mozambican officials. When criminal money meets abject poverty, the results are always devastating - for biodiversity and ultimately, for the people depending on it.

Very, very difficult to tackle.
And the more time goes by without decisive action, the more the indiscriminate slaughter of those charismatic species is directly undermining one of the possible solutions, i.e. marine tourism.
I'm sure that good people are already talking to the authorities - and if you want to help, you may want to intervene in the debate about short-term economic gain versus long-term sustainability by making a direct contribution.
 
Please do consider traveling to Inhambane when planning your next diving vacation..

1 comment:

Shark Diver said...

Yakuza! It's always those guys behind everything, Paul Watson said so it has to be true!