The women setting the course for India’s seaweed farming journey

Fisherwomen in Tamil Nadu’s Pamban Island show how seaweed farming can be a means to deal with declining fish catch and climate change.

At various points along the westward side of the 30-km-long Pamban Island, if you look carefully enough, small bobbing shapes, which a sea-trained eye can make out to be swimmers with snorkels, can be seen. More easily spotted are square-shaped bamboo rafts floating not more than 100 metres from the shore, resembling pieces of a jigsaw puzzle that has come apart. Women can be seen tending to these rafts or pulling them onto the shore. Both these near-shore activities are methods to pick naturally grown seaweed or grow seaweed that is then harvested on shore. 

Seaweed is the common name …


Sibi Arasu

Sibi Arasu is an award-winning journalist who has covered issues pertaining to extreme weather events, climate change adaptation and mitigation, industrial pollution, conservation and conflict between people and wildlife as well as on the rights of the Adivasi or indigenous people of India. As an independent journalist, he has written for multiple news organizations both in India and internationally, including the National Geographic, the BBC, the New Internationalist, the Hindustan Times, Scroll, The Wire, Mongabay and Caravan magazine.