Philippine reefs (fwd)

Coral Health and Monitoring Program coral at
Fri Nov 22 12:14:24 EST 1996

---------- Forwarded message ---------- 
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 1996 12:15:06 -0500 
From: Don McAllister <mcall at> 
To: Coral Health and Monitoring Program <coral at> 
Cc: mcall at 
Subject: Re: Philippine reefs (fwd) 

Doug Fenner responded: 
> ---------- Forwarded message ---------- 
> Date: Fri, 22 Nov 1996 10:49:38 +0800 
> From: CEMRINO <cemrino at> 
> Subject: Coralist: Philippine reefs 
> Coralist Subscribers, 
>     The recent message entitled "PHILIPPINES:  CORAL REEFS RAVAGED BY 
> IMPOVERISHED FISHERS" presents a popular, and somewhat oversimplified 
> picture of the problems with Philippine coral reefs.  A similar article 
> appeared in the June 3, 1996 Asian edition of TIME, entitled "Reef 
> Killers"  (p. 49).  They state that "But in the Philippines, which has 
> 33,000 sq km of reef, 90% of the coral is dead or deteriorated,..." 

I think Doug has given a more holistic picture of the situation in the 
Philippines. There is no doubt that coastal fishers contribute to the 
unhappy condition of the reefs, but for the most part in the struggle to 
live and through having few other options on so low an income to change. 
But land-based marine sources of pollution, sedimentation, 
eutrophication, and pollution from agriculture, deforestation, 
industries and municipalities are primary and often chronic sources of 

Involvement, education and empowerment of citizens, giving them a bigger 
voice in governance is one approach.  Another is education of 
industries, eco-labelling and giving citizens a choice in the 
market-place, and providing a more pluralistic society where coops, 
NGOs, churches and peoples organizations to offer a counterpoise to 
strictly short-term profit oriented products. 

But governance by the rich as opposed to democracy is not just a problem 
in the Philippines.  Here in Canada the tobacco industry lobby has just 
managed to kill legislation that would have provided stronger regulation 
of marketting tobacco, over the wishes of most citizens - corporatocracy 
won over democracy. 



Don McAllister, 
Ocean Voice International 

More information about the Coral-list-old mailing list