Bahrain has banned the extracting and dredging of sand, in a bid to allow the kingdom’s seabed to recover from decades of damage, it was reported on Sunday.
The order was announced by Bahraini Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa on Saturday and was welcomed by fishermen and environmentalists, according to a report by the Gulf Daily News (GDN) website.
“Sand dredging and extraction is a sickle that just cuts large chunks of the seabed without any differentiation or thought to its importance to the marine cycle,” Jassim Al Jeran, president of the Fishermen Protection Society, was quoted as saying.
“The operations stir up the seabed, causing irreparable damage to the marine environment over long distances; this worsens when there are strong currents,” he added.
The order focuses on the seabed area north of Muharraq and around the Jarradah island, the report said.
“Greed has destroyed the seabed, the environment and has even led to mass fish deaths. By halting such operations in the two key areas, not only will the nation’s stock be protected but also the source of life for future generations,” Dr Subbar Al Wedaie, chairman of the Northern Municipal Council services and public utilities committee and a well-known environmentalist, was quoted as saying.
Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.