KOCHI: The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) has taken the ‘art route’ to create awareness among the public on coastal pollution. As part of its Swacch Bharat initiatives, the CMFRI has put up an art installation titled ‘fish cemetery’ at Fort Kochi here. The installation, which covers an area of 2,500 sqft, was created in association with the Cochin Shipyard. The installation will be inaugurated by Kochi Mayor Soumini Jain at 6.30 pm on Saturday.
“The fish cemetery is a warning against dumping of plastics into water resources and the sea,” said CMFRI-Head of Fishery Environmental and Management Division principal scientist Dr V Kripa. “Plastic has become one of the biggest threats to aquatic ecosystems and their resources. It is estimated that about seven billion tonnes of plastic is dumped into the ocean every year. Studies by the CMFRI indicate that plastic has been damaging near-shore habitats that serve as breeding/feeding grounds for several commercially important fishes,” she said. “Sea birds and small fish varieties like anchovy and sardine feed on small pieces of plastic.
Large plastic sheets have been found in the stomach of mackerel, tuna, queen fish, ribbon fish and whale, which clearly indicates that plastic has entered our marine food chain,” she said. The installation was created by artists Manoj Brahmamangalam and Pramod Gopalakrishnanan.