The National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) kickstarted a two-day training expedition on marine pollution focussing Chennai coast. Scientists from different parts of the country are ascertaining the buoy which was installed by NIOT the previous year to monitor the coastal water quality.
Earlier, NIOT team and scientists studying the marine ecosystem used to venture into the sea to collect data manually. But since the previous year, the system has been made easy with the installation of first of its kind buoy to study marine parameters. The buoy helps monitor the variations in coastal water quality and address the growing marine pollution. The data is being profiled by the Ministry of Earth Sciences and it will help the Centre to work on policies related to marine pollution.
“As part of a strict protocol, the data related to marine pollution would not be shared on any public domain. The data would only be accessible to the Union government. Though Indian scientists have now intensified studies on oil spills, movement of foreign vessels and toxicology in the fish population, the findings are not openly published or shared,” said a marine scientist with Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.
Building capacity towards achieving the 2030 agenda of a clean, healthy, safe and sustainable Indian Ocean is the international theme suggested by the United Nations. But going by the increase in traffic of big commercial vessels and the trawling activities, the water pollution is only turning from bad to worse, said Nanjil P Ravi, spokesperson, National Union of All India Fishermen Association. Maintaining coastal water quality is significant for fishing, promoting water sports and cruise tourism. Communities living along the coast will be the first to be affected with the growing marine pollution, Ravi said, adding that the oil discharge is another issue in the Indian ocean.