|Overview of land-based sources and activities affecting the marine, coastal and associated freshwater environment in the Eastern African Region|
UNEP/lnstitute of Marine Sciences, University of Oar es Salaam/FAO/SIOA, UNEP (1998). Overview of land-based sources and activities affecting the marine, coastal and associated freshwater environment in the Eastern African Region. UNEP Reg. Seas Rep. Stud. 167
In: UNEP Regional Seas Reports and Studies. UNEP: Geneva. ISSN 1014-8647, more
East Africa; Marine; Brackish water; Fresh water
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- UNEP/lnstitute of Marine Sciences, University of Oar es Salaam/FAO/SIOA, UNEP
This document provides a regional overview of land-based sources and activities and their impacts on the marine, coastal and associated freshwater environments in the East African region. The overview covers three coastal States [Kenya, United Republic of Tanzania (Tanzania) and Mozambique] and five island States [Madagascar, Mauritius, the Islamic Federal Republic of Comoros (Comoros), the Zanzibar state of the United Republic of Tanzania and the Seychelles]. The rapidly expanding coastal populations of the region exert ever-increasing pressure on coastal habitats and resources. Land-based anthropogenic activities such as agriculture and industry, coastal urbanization, tourism and rock/mineral extraction, disturb natural conditions and processes, degrading coastal resources and habitats. The effects can have serious social and economic implications. The objective of the overview is to present information that will assist Governments of the region in their efforts to protect the marine environment and achieve the sustainable development of their coastal and marine areas through integrated coastal management initiatives. There is a large degree of uncertainty associated with the source-inventory method for the estimation of pollution loads from industrial and domestic sources, on which all the national assessments were based. Very few scientific studies have been conducted to determine the concentration of specific pollutants in fresh, ground, or coastal waters. Therefore, the interpretations made in this report are tentative. The lack of infrastructure and treatment facilities for the large quantities of domestic sewage generated by expanding coastal urban populations, and an increasing number of visiting tourists, represents the greatest threat to public health, coastal habitats and economic development in each State of the region. Other priorities requiring action include the effects of siltation related to agricultural activity and the dumping of solid domestic waste leading to the degradation of coastal habitats, with implications for fish stocks and catches. Although eutrophication and algal blooms associated with agricultural, industrial or domestic sewage pollution have been identified as a threat to coastal habitats, further scientific research is required to link the causes and effects. Strategies and measures are suggested to address the priority issues identified, including the improvement of sewage infrastructures and more detailed assessment of the effects of pollution on coastal habitats using remote-sensing.