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Hainan is a green island 48 km off the coast of China. Tourism is still in its infancy here: only the Chinese and the Russians have already discovered this island. All the buildings are new and many hotels are still under construction. There are some tourist resorts, such as Sanya and Haikou. The horizon of the seaside resort of Sanya is occupied by the large Western chain hotels, such as Hilton, Marriott and Sheraton. Fortunately, the law in China states that Western companies must enter into a partnership with a Chinese company or with the government. As a result, China also makes some money from tourism and does not return all the money to the West.

Near Sanya is China’s largest army base. These army boats don’t handle their waste too well: it gets dumped into the sea. Tourists swim among the plastic bags. Fishermen also do not handle their waste well: that too is dumped into the sea. It is clear that the island does not have a waste disposal system. It’s for the hotels, not the locals.

The coral is also badly handled: fishermen and submarines throw their anchor on it, souvenir sellers break it down and then sell it to the tourists. Because the coral reefs are not protected, they are already severely damaged. There is hardly any awareness of environmental problems. People have to survive and caring for nature and the environment is an afterthought. If there are no more tourists because the water is polluted and the coral reefs are dead, then the realization will come. But by then, it’s too late.

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