In the effort to support environment friendly shrimp farming practices in mangrove ecosystems through the Shrimp-Carbon Aquaculture (SECURE) approach, on 30 March 2022, the Berau District Fisheries Service was supported by Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN), the Research Institute for Brackish Water Cultivation Fisheries and Fisheries Extension, Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (BRPBAP3 KKP), and the Nusantara Maritime Institute (LEMSA) held a meeting entitled "Workshop on the Implementation of SECURE Cycle One." The activity continued with the tiger shrimp farmers training at Pegat Batumbuk Village the next day.
Berau Regency is listed as the largest mangrove ecosystem in East Kalimantan Province. Yet, since the unplanned opening of shrimp farms became the main driver of mangrove deforestation in this region. This change in the function of mangrove land can have a negative impact on the ecosystem, as well as threaten the livelihoods of coastal communities. To overcome this, YKAN together with BRPBAP3 KKP, introduced the SECURE approach since 2020 with pilot locations in Kampung Pegat Batumbuk and Kampung Tabalar Muara.
“The general characteristics of brackish water ponds in Berau Regency are for the cultivation of milkfish and tiger prawns. The problems faced are usually low egg quality, inappropriate management of water and pond soil quality, and uncontrolled use of pesticides. Through the SECURE approach, we try to overcome this by improving the design and construction of ponds, managing environmental quality, and adapting aquaculture technology. In the future, we can also function SECURE ponds as demonstration plots for learning, disseminating experiences through field school programs and assisting in group and business development,” explained BRPBAP3 KKP researcher Dr. Taruna Mulia.
“Through the SECURE program, currently 10 hectares of active shrimp ponds have been restored to 2 hectares of shrimp ponds. While the remaining area of 8 hectares is used as a mangrove restoration area that will support natural food for shrimp and fish, and reduce carbon emissions. The SECURE pond program is carried out by redesigning the shrimp pond to a smaller size and combining it with mangrove hydrological restoration. Ponds that are converted from mangrove areas and left abandoned, apart from being unproductive, also have the potential to cause other environmental problems,” explained YKAN Director of Marine Program Muhammad Ilman.
Efforts to protect the mangrove ecosystem in Berau Regency indirectly support the production of sustainable capture fisheries and aquaculture. As a habitat for shrimp, fish and crabs, the mangrove ecosystem has an important meaning for fishermen and farmers, as well as the coastal communities of Berau Regency.
"As field assistants, we see several advantages of SECURE ponds, namely by-product harvesting from nature can be done every month, the distribution of the types of biota that are cultivated, the harvesting process is more effective and efficient, and there are no disturbing pests," said Abzhal Bastarie from LEMSA.
“By implementing sustainable aquaculture practices, economic growth can go hand in hand with global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. From the results of this first cycle trial, we are optimistic that the SECURE approach is able to increase pond productivity by involving local communities in restoring some unproductive ponds into healthy mangroves again. To support its sustainability, this SECURE method will be replicated in ponds in Berau Regency," concluded the Head of the Berau District Fisheries Service, Tenteram Rahayu.
Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) is a scientific-based non-profit organization that has been present in Indonesia since 2014. With the mission of protecting lands and waters as life support systems, we provide innovative solutions to realize the harmony of nature and humans through effective natural resource management, prioritizing a non-confrontational approach, and building a network of partnerships with all stakeholders for a sustainable Indonesia. For more information, visit ykan.or.id.