KOTA BOGOR, 21 October (BelTA - ANTARA News Agensy). - Indonesia's diving tourism potential is quite large, but it is hindered by the damage to the ecosystem, Professor of the Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences, Bogor Agricultural University (IPB) Fredinan Yulianda stated.
The professor noted that over 70 percent of the world's coral reef species are in Indonesia, though currently, only 28.6 percent can be used as diving tourism due to the impact of ecosystem damage.
"The right way for recovery is the conservation of marine ecosystems that support marine tourism, one of which is diving tours to see the diverse and beautiful corals," Fredinan noted in his online presentation, Thursday.
He said the behavior of people, who often pollute the waters to the sea, is quite damaging to the marine ecosystem, so contribution of the marine economy becomes less than optimal.
In addition, he said that development on land by backfilling or reclamation also has an impact, as it can narrow the area of the shallow sea where coral reefs grow.
Other economic activities, such as sea bombing to catch fish, also damage marine ecosystems, he pointed out.
Yulianda said that conservation conducted properly will be able to balance the marine environment and the community's economic activities.
Conservation education to the public, agencies, and tourism entrepreneurs should be improved, as coral growth takes hundreds of years, he stated.
He said with 17 thousand small islands, Indonesia has the second-longest coastline in the world and the number of coastlines, with shallow water types supporting the existence of coral reefs, reaches 99 thousand.
Indonesia also has 16,671 islands filled with several coral reefs around it.
"Diversity is now a strong asset for ecotourism by prioritizing natural resources from coral reef ecosystems," he stated.