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A reminder that coastal pollution not a dead issue

January 21, 2017 08:45 am | Updated 08:45 am IST - Kochi:

The ‘Fish Cemetery’ being installed at Fort Kochi by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.

The ‘Fish Cemetery’ being installed at Fort Kochi by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.

The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) has come up with what it calls a ‘fish cemetery’, a huge art installation, to create public awareness about coastal pollution.

The installation, covering an area of more than 2,500 sq.ft and having a height of 13 feet, has been created on South Beach, Fort Kochi. Set up with the support of Cochin Shipyard Limited, it will be inaugurated by Kochi Mayor Soumini Jain on Saturday. The project was part of the CMFRI’s Swachch Bharat Abhiyan initiatives, said an official release issued here on Friday.

The release quotes V. Kripa, Principal Scientist and Head of Fishery Environmental and Management Division, CMFRI, as stating that the installation is meant to warn the public of the dangers of dumping plastics into the sea and other waterbodies.

“Tiny plastic pieces and threads have been found in the stomach of small fishes like anchovies, sardines and sea birds while large plastic sheets and covers have been obtained from the stomach of mackerel, tuna, queen fish, ribbon fishes, whale, which clearly indicates plastics have entered into our marine food chain,” Dr. Kripa said.

Global studies indicate that chemical contaminants found in plastic debris are harmful to marine fauna even at low concentrations. These may also affect human beings. Every effort should be made to prevent the spread of plastics in our marine habitats.

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