Credit to Author: The Manila Times| Date: Tue, 21 May 2019 06:31:49 +0000
CHINESE vessels left trails of broken reefs in the West Philippine Sea (WPS) following a resumption of clam harvesting activities in the last six months, a Washington-based think-tank reported.
Satellite images from Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) showed the damage brought by the “destructive” methods used in the harvesting clams.
Despite a “sharp drop-off in activity from 2016 to late 2018,” the AMTI said that “Chinese clam harvesting fleets have returned to the South China Sea in force over the last six months.”
The think-tank said fleets of mother ships and dozens of small fishing vessels crossed the reef surface to break up the coral, allowing the clams to be easily lifted out.
“The clam shells are transported back to Hainan Province where they fetch thousands of dollars each in a thriving market for jewelry and statuary,” the AMTI said. NEIL JAYSON N. SERVALLOS
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