The populations of East Asian countries tend to be densely located along the coastal areas. These areas are growing as more people and factories move there.
Marine environments in Eastern Asia are of great economic significance. In total, the region
accounts for 47% of global fishing and 87% of international mariculture.
In addition to these sectors, marine-related tourism is also highly profitable to many countries in the area. Unfortunately, development for tourism can increase sediment in coastal waters, destroying coral reefs in such places as Indonesia and Malaysia. But it is fishing that is providing the area with the economic resources needed to develop, and with the protein the local people need to survive.
Marine environments face destruction from pollution. Polluted rivers, industrial effluents, ports, and ship contaminants all contribute to this problem. Almost 70% of all waste dumped into the Pacific Ocean has undergone no treatment.
Heavy-metal contamination is becoming a severe problem because of industrial effluents and land-based waste being dumped into the oceans. These substances can deeply influence the
natural ecosystems of the area, often affecting the local food chain.
Pollution of marine environments can also come from oil spills or sea transportation. Every year, the Bay of Bengal receives 400,000 tons of oil pollution. Exploring for natural resources and developing resources in the oceans also inevitably produces harmful pollution.
Destruction of marine environments has meant that mangrove forests have been removed in great quantities. In addition, many species
are losing their habitats and native creatures are being killed off by human activity in marine environments.