Spectacular Caribbean Coral Reef on the Verge of Disappearing

Uploaded by TheVJMovement on 26.01.2011

Ever De la Rosa and his wife Lucenith,
have a supplies and fuel business
at a very Caribbean place called Isla Grande,
located in the heart of the Rosario and San Bernardo islands.
This archipelago was declared a National Park
because of its beauty and the relevance of its coral reef,
one of the most extensive and important of the Caribbean Basin
Various jobs, here one is a fisherman,
businessman, civic leader; well ...
I was chairman of the Communal Action Board
for three consecutive terms.
here we took on the task
of gathering the community
to train it on law number 70.
People began to identify themselves
as Afro-Colombians up to the point
point where we started to organize
ourselves as an ethnic group.
We then started the community council.
These islands located near Cartagena- Colombia
have always been the favorite
relaxing spot for Presidents, artists,
tycoons and mafia´s capos
More than 300 000 people around the world
come every year to Ever´s neighborhood
and pay almost a million dollars for entry tickets.
And this park helps to keep
the other 48 parks ...
if this is what's financing the others one
We ought to take care of it because
now is the goose that lays the golden eggs.
But today all this is seriously threatened
by one project that seeks to relive
contamination from Cartagena´s bay.
The Dique channel, a work artificiall
built 300 years ago, dumps
10 million cubic meters of sediment
to the sea on a daily basis
Around one third of which is deposited
in the Bay of Cartagena.
There is a project is under way.
Contracts are being awarded
for the design and narrowing of the channel
and the construction of a sluicegate.
This involves the removal of over 1 million cubic meters
of soil to build a relief channel
that will prevent the water and the sediments
from reaching the bay of Cartagena
and sending it to a storage spot.
Fishing has declined so much.
There was a time when we used to fish
100-150 kilos, but now whoever
achieves 30 may consider himself lucky.
Projects such as the Oceanarium
which has reproduction and restocking of
endangered species, have been seriously
damaged by the sedimentation and pollution
in the water from the Cartagena and Barbacoas bays.
The influx of fresh water and sediment
that they bring are of the worst damage
inflicted on a very vulnerable and important
ecosystem such as coral reefs.
We've sensed it here; we call them
"bombs" meaning a ball of fresh water
carried by the current.
When the current stops anywhere,
it does for half or a full day.
It all turns white ... for us it´s clear
there´s a huge damage being caused.
No fisherman will say otherwise.
Meanwhile, the islanders do not understand
why have they not been consulted
as required by Colombian law on such projects.
No one has officially informed us
about the project. In fact we are
caught as the saying goes: "off base".
If the community is not aware that
thereís a project going on, nobody reacts.
Once the project starts there´s no going back.
It all comes down to it being an investment;
it´s carried out no matter what.
The Corporation responsible for the project
signed in May the authorization to start the work.
That leaves less than six months to
remedy the misdoings and avoid the
collapse of a cork tree shrine and a coral
reef which has unique species and an
irreplaceable value to the native islander
community and all citizens of this planet.