This stunning WWF audio slideshow displays the ancient way of living of the Balau Laut, which is being threatened by depleting fish stocks and environmental degradation.
With over 76 percent of the world’s known coral species, the coral triangle — a 1.6bn acre stretch of tropical coral reefs in south-east Asia — is home to the highest coral diversity in the world. Here dwell some of the world’s last remaining nomadic marine communities, including the Balau Laut.
James Morgan, a WWF photographer, traveled to Indonesia to document the threatened way of life of these nomads of the sea. His images are both mind-blowing and heart-wrenching.
Faced by environmental degradation and depleting fish stocks, the Balau Laut people find themselves forced to resort to more and more destructive fishing techniques in order to meet their nutritional and economic requirements.
The human consequences of this are crippling — both for the individuals who end up being mutilated by cyanide or dynamite, and for the community as a whole, whose numbers are dwindling and whose remaining members are struggling more and more every single day just to get by.
Once again, these images powerfully relay how it’s always the most vulnerable who are most directly and most severely affected by environmental degradation.