Smaller fish, bleached corals: Maldives hit by several threats from climate change

by Admin
Smaller fish, bleached corals: Maldives hit by several threats from climate change


Over the past 50 years, sea surface temperatures in the Indian Ocean have risen 50 per cent faster than the global average due to climate change. This disrupts the natural migration patterns of fish, pushing them into cooler and deeper waters.

Fishermen have also been forced to battle more unpredictable weather patterns while out on their boats.

“Now the fishermen spend a lot of time out at sea. They spend about a week minimum out at sea,” said Maldives Fishermen’s Association secretary-general Abdulla Shakir Mohamed.

“So, if the sea is rough, if the weather is bad, then that will definitely (pose) problems (for) them returning back to the base or to their home island.”

The association engages with thousands of fishermen, and equips them with essential skills to navigate these challenges.

Mr Abdulla said these skills include how to collect and analyse data, as well as how to identify different types of clouds and changes in weather patterns.

The training provided focused on how weather conditions change and how this affects smaller island communities, he added.

In the face of climate change, fishermen have learned to embrace sustainable fishing practices, while relying on technology to chart a new course forward. But every day at sea remains a gamble for these guardians of the sea.

“In the olden days, like maybe 10 years ago, during the season changes, everybody would go out to the reef edges where they (could get a) good number of fishes,” Mr Ashfam lamented.

“Now, it’s been affected.”

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