For years, the beaches and sea of Bou Ismail have been degraded and polluted by the nearby industrial zone, and specifically the Tonic Industries, a company specialized in producing paper and packaging.
The release of industrial waste waters has been a common sight for the citizens of Bou Ismail who launched a petition urging authorities to do something about the constant aggression of their marine environment.  In July 2015, a minister visited the city to to realize the seriousness of the desperate calls, launched several years ago to stop the sacking of the waterfront, which is suffering from the continuous spills of domestic and industrial wastewater.  Some of the complaints were: "For several months the shoreline of the city of Bou-Ismail is invaded by the unbearable and nauseating odors that come from the sea whose water is oddly colored. The rocks have lost their original color and have become white. The sea is heavily polluted because of the wastewater from the agro-food industries and paper mills installed on the heights of the city in the absence of purification." 
Dumping untreated effluents into the sea is prohibited by law. Upon his visit, the minister declared: "The Tonic group, the first responsible of this disaster, is called to put its purification plant, built two years ago, into service due to the lack of equipment.” As for the environmentalists they believe that the jobs provided by industrial units do not justify the "massacre" of the environment, it is not enough to "call" Tonic to put its treatment plant into service but it must be required and imposed quickly because the damage is already heavy or irreparable.  But two years later, in June 2017, after a visit by the new ministry of the environment, it was observed that nothing was done yet. The minister stated that the industrial group that has been dumping its industrial waste since 2005, was recently sent a second formal notice by the commission charged with control and monitoring, ordering it to proceed with the treatment of the pollution problem following the suspension of its activity for three months.