The following people were invited to contribute: Nicolas Pilcher (MTSG Co-Chair), Holly Dublin (Chair, SSC-IUCN), Sanjay Choudhry (Corporate Communications, TATA Steel), Amlan Dutta (Dhamra Port Company Ltd), Janaki Lenin & Romulus Whitaker (conservationists in India), Ashish Fernandes & Sanjiv Gopal (Greenpeace India), the Orissa Marine Resources Conservation Consortium, Aarthi Sridhar (Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment), Biswajit Mohanty & Belinda Wright (conservationists in India), Jack Frazier (Smithsonian Institution), Nicholas Mrosovsky (University of Toronto and former MTSG Co-Chair), and Kartik Shanker (Indian Institute of Science). We asked authors to keep each contribution under 1000 words of text; some were more diligent than others in meeting this request. We also asked Douglas Hykle (IOSEA) if we could reprint his editorial published earlier in 2008 on the IOSEA website. Hykle’s editorial provides a good overview of a number of the issues, and it is followed by two letters: one that was jointly authored by a number of sea turtle conservationists/NGOs in India and sent to the IUCN, and the other that was written by the IUCN in response to the first letter. Other perspectives on the situation are provided by Mrosovsky and Shanker. Following this are three editorials written by sea turtle conservationists in India who have actively expressed concern about the Dhamra Port development: Lenin & Whitaker, Fernandes, and Rodriguez & Sridhar. Next are three editorials written by members of the MTSG, the IUCN/SSC and the Dhamra Port Company Ltd, on their positions: Pilcher, Dublin and Dutta. The theme section is brought to a close with an editorial by Frazier who tries to situate the Dhamra debate in a wider context. While we hope that this forum will shed some light on the larger issues surrounding the Dhamra Port development debate, we realise that simply highlighting the debate is only one step in the complex process of resolving conservation issues. Nevertheless, understanding the problems is a necessary first step towards finding solutions. We thank all authors for their time and effort in producing their editorials for this special theme section.
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