Aquaculture Changes Mexican Shoreline

These Landsat images show changes to Sonora Mexico.s western coastline, located on the Gulf of California, due to the construction of shrimp farms. Since the early 1990s, shrimp aquaculture has rapidly expanded in the area. While this industry has provided profits and employment, there have also been concerns about how it has changed the ecosystems of the Gulf area. The shrimp industry has also created disputes about property rights to the communal coastal lands, which once were part of a federal maritime zone until reform in 1992.

Landsat data are useful to help decision makers and scientists determine any potential impacts of constructing aqua-farms along the coastlines. 1993 imagery can be compared to 2011 imagery to show the changes along the coastal area, and the comparison can be used to monitor conditions and anticipate future alteration.

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Thursday, October 20, 2011