Some 2000 women are protecting the biosphere in the Gulf of Mannar in Tamil Nadu, India by limiting sea weed harvest, their only source of income.
These local women from over 100 coastal villages used to collect seaweed on a daily basis from a region housing some of the most extensive seagrass-coral-mangrove ecosystems along mainland India. This was stopped when the Government posed a complete ban.
In the aftermath, the community realised the need for protection of the biosphere reserve in the Marine National Park and agreed to restrict the harvest days to about 12 a month.
The regenerative approach for collection not only keeps marine ecosystem in check, it also yields extra sea weed ensuring better livelihood for the villagers. This is yet another sign of sustainable cohabitation catalysed by governance systems.