Kochi: Rapid commercialisation of the ocean sector, with little regard to ecology, is a major threat to marine ecosystem and the very existence of mankind, Kerala Governor P Sathasivam said Thursday.
Inaugurating the maiden World Ocean Science Congress (WOSC) here, he said the increased commercialisation had affected the livelihood of the fishing community, who have even been forced to move out of their habitat of late.
"Commercialisation is also a threat to maritime culture and traditions", he said, lamenting that the Indian Ocean remains "the least understood and managed ocean in the world" despite it being the most productive of all.
"Effective management of the ocean and its resources is a challenging task due to lack of regional co-operation, increasing population in coastal areas and socio-economic conditions", he added.
The Governor said the four-day congress would be a "perfect platform" for various stakeholders to come together to discuss issues related to protection of marine life and changing environment patterns.
State Fisheries Minister K Babu, said the recent report on deep-sea fishing policy would have adverse impact on the livelihood of fishing community, especially those in Kerala.
The Centre should review the policy, he noted while delivering the Presidential address.
The WOSC, jointly organised by Swadeshi Science Movement, Vijnana Bharati, Kerala chapter and Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS), Kochi, will discuss ways and means to use ocean resources for improving our economic growth without disrupting the ocean life and environment.