The Trapeang Ropov fishing community held its first “Seafloor Exhibition” on November 23 in Prek Tnort commune in Kampot province’s Bokor town to showcase the biodiversity that their community has helped to protect through conservation efforts.

Thung Nhil, head of the Trapeang Ropov fishing community, said that the exhibition aims to showcase coral reefs, mangrove forests, seagrass and other habitats present on the seafloor with all of the usual wildlife and fish that make their homes there.

“This exhibition serves as a message to people, telling them to love natural resources and understand the importance of biodiversity and natural resources in our community. It is important for us to make our communities resistant to climate change and that is the reason why we’re helping to preserve the mangrove forests,” he said.

He said the exhibition was made possible with the support of six organizations and the participation of several ministries.

He continued that the exhibition was held not just to attract tourists, but also to educate people in the commune so that they will know to conserve biodiversity at sea such as the mangrove forests.

For National Environmental Sanitation Day this year, his community recycled plastic waste and reduced it at sea by collecting it.

The exhibition will be open to tourists and also features children’s drawings, a racing boat made from recycled plastic waste and boating excursions to see the seagrass fields and coral reefs.

Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said that the exhibition can show the potential for biodiversity on the seafloors of Cambodia while making members of the public aware that Cambodia is rich in biodiversity that they must help preserve.

“We expect that this exhibition will provide information for members of the public. Some people who have never seen these resources will come to know about biodiversity on the seafloor such as coral reefs, seagrass and marine animals,” he added.