Drive vs illegal fishpens in Dagupan starts Sept. 1
August 21, 2010 11:45 am
DAGUPAN CITY, Aug. 20 — The crackdown by the city government here on illegal fishpens will start on September 1 this year though owners were given till October 31 to close them consistent with one-year moratorium planned on this kind of fish contraption.
A press release issued by the City Information Office stated that by September 1, several teams will begin their clamp down on all illegal fishpens, especially those which are not in the right location, are over-sized and operating without Aquaculture Lease Agreement (ALA).
On order of Mayor Benjamin Lim, over-sized fishpens are given 15 days to reduce their size.
Lim explained that the one-year moratorium will give time for the city council to craft a new law or possibly amend the existing fishery code.
He explained that there is a need to give the existing fishery code more teeth to penalize violators and to increase its taxation or equitably taxing the operators to allow the entry of small fish crops for the marginalized sector.
At the same time, Lim said he will soon invite fishpond owners, marginalized fisherfolks, environmentalists and "consignacion" members or wholesalers to a symposium to discuss and review the city's bangus industry and the need to protect the rivers.
We need to get the consensus of the majority who will agree later on that there is a need to implement a moratorium so we can have time to plant mangrove trees in the riverside for the meantime, Lim said.
During the symposium, a comparison will also be made on the advantages and disadvantages of maintaining a fishpen and a fishpond so we will know really the difference, Lim added.
The mayor also clarified that there is a need to address some questions like how to improve production in the fishpond by using machinery to make it deeper; how to substitute fishpen with other fishcrafts like the floating cage; and whether or not to concentrate only on bangus or raise other species like talakitok, pampano, and lapu-lapu or high-value fish that could give more yield.
After all, there is not much difference between bangus grown in Dagupan and those grown in Bolinao nowadays except bangus which are feed with linang or "lablab" in the fishpond, he said. (PNA)