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Serangan Island is an island that has been in the heart of the Balinese people for
decades. An island that is located in the southeastern part of Bali and has went through
many drastic changes, it is a mere example of the victim of environmental destruction
due to tourism growth.
The damage of the island began when PT. Bali Turtle Island Development started
on a project to develop Serangan Island into a tourism area in the 1980s. Even though
there has been many conflict and controversy to the project, it finally had it’s legal
agreement from the government of Denpasar and the reclamation process started. From
this stage there has been many environmental problems such as change of current,
abrasion, the damage of the ecosystem and even to the change of the people’s economical
The purpose of writing this paper is to understand and identify the physical and
non-physical condition of the island before the reclamation process and after it, and also
to specify the damage that has been done.
In ecological science, there is a method which is called ecological design method
that consists of conservation, regeneration and stewardship. By using them as a guideline,
the damage of the island can be fixed.
Geographically, Serangan Island is located in the South Denpasar district. The
original area of the island is 111.9 hectares that consists of 6.456 hectares of settlement,
85 hectares of farming land and 19 hectares of marshes and mangroves. The Serangan
Island has six Banjar, they are Banjar ponjok, Banjar Kaja, Banjar Tengah, banjar Kawan,
Banjar Peken, Banjar Dukuh and Bugis Village. The island has a populaiton of 3253
people and 85% of them are fishermen.
The development of Serangan Island by PT. BTID has it’s positive and negative
effects, but more to the negative. The positive effects are, attracts tourists, expansion of
settlement area, easy accessibility to Sakenan Temple, creates job fields and as a form of
income to the government.
And the negative effects are mainly about the damage of the environment. The
change of the water current happens due to the reclamation process that shrinks and
blocks the current’s passage around the island. Therefore causing abrasion in nearby
beaches, such as Mertasari Beach and Tanjung Benoa.
The reclamation process also disturbs the balance of the ecosystem. Coral reef
and mangroves disappear because of the digging and filling that’s happening. With the
loss of both those ecosystems, the island will be more vulnerable to abrasion. Besides
that, coral reefs and mangroves are home to the sea commodities that the Serangan
people used to gather to make money. But now that is almost impossible.
One of the sea animals that is threatened by the reclamation process is the sea
turtle. This creature used to come to the beaches to nest every year, but now it is rarely
seen and sometimes every 2 – 3 years come to nest.
Besides the effects on the environment, there is also an impact on the lives of the
Serangan people. There has been a drastic change in their work and what they do for a
living. Because of the development and reclamation, the on-shore fishermen have to
become off-shore fishermen in order to capture fish and other sea products. And to do so
they need a big capital fund to buy boats and other off-shore fishermen equipments.
Others who do not have the money become low paid workers.
With all of those problems haunting the island, the holy boundaries of Sakenan
Temple is also in a major threat. Data shows that 90% of the area that is going to be
developed are within the holy boundaries of the temples in Serangan.
All of those problems can be solved by using the ecological design method that
consists of conservation, regeneration, and stewardship. Conservation can be done
through endangered animal and wildlife conservatories, Regeneration through the
renewal and repair of living tissues such as the coral reef, and stewardship with the help
and attention given by the society.