Residents of Ao Gung community in the tourist island of Phuket and conservationist groups have expressed serious concern that construction of a new marina for yachts which is located just a stone's throw away from the Ao Gung bay will threaten coral reefs in the area as well as their livelihood.
They said they found the information from the project owner flawed as it claimed that there were no coral reefs within 1-km radius of Ao Gung bay. Also, they noted that the mangrove forest was being threatened by encroachers suspected of trying to destroy the forest to justify the construction of the marina project.
A recent survey of the sea in Ao Gung by officials from the natural resources and environment ministry shows coral reefs cover an area of about 547 rai with 62 rai being rated as in perfect condition and 12 rai of carolline algae.
To protect the coral reefs, community residents joined officials from natural resources and environment ministry to demarcate the sea in Ao Gung.
Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (ThaiPBS)