Posts Tagged ‘Bali’

Biorock Coral Restoration in Bali

While snorkeling in Permuteran in northeastern Bali, I noticed these strange metal cages under the water. How strange to see coral growing out of these cages! What were these strange structures?

Later I found out they were part the Biorock Coral Restoration project. The Biorock method uses safe low-voltage electrical currents to grow natural limestone rock out of the sea on steel structures of any size or shape. This provides the nursery for the birth of baby coral.

These coral grow faster, better withstand stress, and better recover from physical damage. Within a few years, coral reefs grown with the Biorock method can revive and turn eroding beaches into growing beaches with improved water quality.

Over fifty-six Biorock coral nursery structures were installed since June 2000 in Permuteran, a village in northwest Bali, Indonesia. With a total length of 500 meters situated in an area of 2 hectares, this is the largest Biorock coral reef nursery and restoration project worldwide, exceeding the combined sizes of all other projects in the Pacific, Caribbean, and Indian Ocean.

Of the 793 species of coral in the world, Indonesia, consisting of more than 17,500 islands, has over 581 species in its waters. Indonesia’s coral reefs cover more than 85,700 square kilometers, equal to 14% of the world’s coral reef area. Unfortunately only 6% are in healthy condition due to damage caused by destructive fishing methods, uncontrolled tourism, weather, and pollution.

Damaged coral reefs take years to recover naturally. Because of these rapidly increasing global stresses, many coral reefs cannot recover naturally, as they could in the past.

Bali’s coral reefs have been severely damaged in recent years due to bombs and cyanide used by farmers, abnormally high water temperatures linked to global warming, and stresses such as anchor and diver damage, reef harvesting, dredging, and increase storm wave intensity.

If not for the Biorock project, today many of Bali’s coral reefs would be jeopardy and not the thriving underwater paradises enjoyed by so many.

Thank you Biorock for creating such a gorgeous waterscape in Bali.

I truly enjoyed snorkeling in your creation. The brilliant colors and diversity in fish and coral were truly spectacular. Gratitude to your efforts in helping to restore beauty and balance to the waters in Bali!

To support the wonderful efforts of Biorock, sponsor a baby coral by going to

(What a cute idea to have a baby coral planted for you with your name attached, with a picture of your coral sent to you after a year of growth!)

For more information on this project, go to the  Global Coral Reef Alliance.

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Mystery Asian in Southeast Asia

MaryThreeQuarterWhere you from?” I was asked repeatedly while in Bali and Thailand for the last two months. Strangely enough, my two friends (two obviously not Asian types who, like me, were from America) rarely got asked this question.

Japan?” “Korea?” “Thailand?” the guesses came. “Nepal?” “Peru?” came more guesses everywhere I went! (Strange how very few guessed Chinese!)

People seemed fascinated that I looked Asian, but  had an American accent and acted like a tourist. For some reason, the concept of an Asian-American seemed so foreign.

Where did this mysterious Asian come from?! That seemed to be the burning question in almost everyone’s mind!

Eventually they would nod in understanding if I felt sorry enough for their puzzlement and told them that my parents were Chinese.

“Ah, Chinese!” they would say, as a their foreheads smoothed out and they happily sighed with relief from having solved this modern mystery.

Unfortunately, my patience wore off so I left some still wondering about my origins. (They shouldn’t feel so bad since even my parents think I look like a Korean!)

What do you think? Where do I look like I’m from?

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Adventures in Southeast Asia – Hodge Podge Photo Montage

Kayaking at Bor Thor - caves and mangroves!

Kayaking at Bor Thor - caves and mangroves!

Sawadee! It’s June and we’re in Southeast Asia in southern Thailand at a cool place called Krabi. So far my friend Sabrina and I have been in Thailand for almost a week, beginning with a ride to Los Angeles, a long 13-plus hour flight to Taipei, and shorter flight to Bangkok, followed by wandering around in the confusing multi-floor airport (maybe the jet lag didn’t help), a ride on the railway, and a ride in a tuk tuk  (a tricycle rickshaw of sorts) to our home for the night (in the Khao San area, where you can get your 1 kilogram of laundry done for about a dollar!). Almost 24 hours later we were finally able to crash at our air-conditioned room at Queen Suriya’s Castle in the Khao San area.

The next day after one taxi, railway, plane, and bus (last one of the day!) later, we arrived after dark at our resort in Krabi, the Aonang Cliff View Resort, happy to be done traveling around for a while!

It’s the beginning of monsoon season here so we’ve had rain every day, with awesome downpours coming with hardly any notice. Despite the rain, we’re having no problem having fun. So far we’ve gone kayaking at Bor Thor (full-day tour under $30!), gotten two Thai massages ($7 for an hour!), eaten yummy meals (under $5), gone to the Night Market (meals for $1!), and taken a long tail boat ride in turbulent waters (and collided with an anchored boat)! That boat was suppose to take us snorkeling at four islands but was canceled due to weather after a few hours of being sprayed with salt water and bouncing up and down on the ocean! (Was a fun ride, though wish we could have gone snorkeling!) Read the rest of this entry »