sparkly islands land reclamation project Tonglian/ZumaPress

China und das tiefe blaue Meer

HO-CHI-MINH-STADT – Seit Dezember 2013 hat China eine Anzahl von Inseln im Südchinesischen Meer um mehr als 1200 Hektar erweitert. Die geopolitischen Auswirkungen dieser Landgewinnung sind gut dokumentiert: Die Mehrzahl der Maßnahmen erfolgte auf den Spratly-Inseln, einem Archipel in den Gewässern zwischen Vietnam, Malaysia und den Philippinen, die alle – wie auch China, Taiwan und Brunei – konkurrierende Ansprüche in Bezug auf diese Region erheben.

Weniger stark diskutiert sind die Auswirkungen des Projekts auf die Umwelt, die ans Katastrophale grenzen. Chinas Aktivitäten gefährden die Fischbestände und bedrohen die Artenvielfalt im Meer, und sie stellen eine langfristige Bedrohung für einige der atemberaubendsten Meereslebewesen der Welt dar.

Tausende von Korallenriffen, Seegraswiesen und anderen Flachwasser-Ökosystemen werden mit einem enormen Tempo vernichtet und begraben, nun, da Chinas Führung darauf drängt, ihre Ansprüche auf die Region geltend zu machen. Das Landgewinnungsprojekt untergräbt die ökologische Verbindung zwischen den Spratly-Inseln und dem Südchinesischen Meer und schneidet diese Ökosysteme von den Nährstoffen ab, auf die sie angewiesen sind.

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