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September 25, 2021, 1:11 am

Shrimp ponds devastate breakwater forests in Quang Nam

(13:05:17 PM 11/12/2013)
(Tinmoitruong.vn) - The coastal pine trees which have been existing for many years in Quang Nam--to protect the houses and villages, have been chopped down to give place to shrimp ponds.



Hundreds of households in the coastal districts of Nui Thanh and Thang Binh have chopped down the pine trees there to make room for their shrimp ponds. The areas of destroyed forests have been increasing rapidly, proportional to the shrimp price increases.


The white leg shrimp prices have been increasing steadily in recent years, from VND50,000 per kilo to VND100,000 and then to VND160,000. This explains why more and more pine trees have fallen down and more and more shrimp ponds have appeared in the locality.


Ngo Dinh Tu, a local resident in Nui Thanh district, said he once incurred heavy losses with the shrimp hatchery along the banks of Truong Giang River and he decided to give up the farming.


However, Tu has recently resumed the shrimp hatchery with his two brothers.


“Local people have made fat profits of hundreds of millions of dong for every crop in the last two years when farming shrimp in the pools lined with canvas. Therefore, we have decided to clear the land to set up four pools for shrimp hatcheries,” he said.


Tu said he spent over VND500 million on the shrimp ponds, from the construction costs to shrimp breeders.


“I have just sold shrimp from the first crop, making a profit of VND500 million. Even if I lose in three crops and win one crop, I would be able to make profit,” he said proudly.


When asked why he destroyed the pine forests and carried out illegal shrimp hatching, Tu said that the local authorities asked him to stop his works and imposed a fine. However, as Tu and workers built the pools at night, the officials could not discover the illegal construction until the pools got completed.


Tu’s neighbors all rush to dig pools to breed shrimp, ignoring the local authorities’ warnings. Some people argued that they had the right to do whatever they want on their land.


In order to clear land for shrimp ponds, a lot of people have chopped down pine forests, cut trees in their gardens and dismantled houses.


Nguyen Hai and Nguyen Phu, the two farmers in Tam Tien commune, said their shrimp pond is situated on the place where there was a big willow forest. The pond covers an area of 1,000 square meters, which would be ready for the first crop soon.


Every one hectare of shrimp farming can bring the turnover of VND3-5 billion a year from 3-4 crops and the profit of VND1.5-2.5 billion. Therefore, Nguyen Giup, Chair of the Nam Tien Commune People’s Committee, said local people, defying the laws, have developed more and more shrimp pools.


“There are 225 households in the commune now breeding shrimp illegally,” he said.


Meanwhile, a report by the Quang Nam provincial Agriculture and Rural Development Department showed that the illegal shrimp hatchery area has reached 222 hectares.


The shrimp hatchery in a massive scale has brought serious initial consequences. It has paved the way for flood tide and wind to attack the locality. Experts have also warned about the other dangers, including the soil erosion, salinization of the underground fresh water, and environment pollution which would lead to shrimp epidemics.

Source: VNE

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