200 fish cages in Anda allowed to resume operation

THE local government of Anda, with the guidance of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Regional Office 1, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), recently allowed some 200 fish cage operators to resume operations in operating and stocking fish in aquaculture zone of Anda, provided they are able to secure an Environmental Compliance Certificate or ECC from DENR.

This was the agreement reached during the meeting among the LGU Anda, BFAR and DENR and the Office of the Provincial Agriculture Office which was attended by fish pen and cage operators in Anda.

DENR, however, made it clear that it will only issue ECC for cages and not fish pens.

The go signal to allow some 200 operators to again operate was based on the recommendations of the DENR and BFAR after it determined that the water quality in Anda has reached normal level.

The new development was attributed to the continuous rains last week that flushed out the pollution and the implementation of the no-fish stocking policy of the local government unit in the first week of June.

Na-wash out umano ng ulan ang dumi sa Caquiputan Channel at naalis ang mga nakabarang dumi mula sa mga feeds na nai-stock sa mga fish pen,” said Elizabeth Tomas, Anda’s municipal agriculture officer.

She confirmed that only the 200 operators who had paid their permits last January will be allowed from the more than 400 fish pen/cage operators who used to operate before the fish kill last June, and will be only allowed to operate until December 31, 2018.

Those allowed cannot operate fish pens in compliance with the “No fish pen” policy of the Regional Law Enforcement Coordinating Council Resolution number 1 series of 2018.

Among the restrictions imposed include location of the cages, use only of bamboo materials for the structures, use of inverted mosquito nets, no over-stocking, no fish structures in the navigational lanes.

BFAR said the municipality of Anda is one of the major resources of bangus and other fish products sold in Pangasinan and Metro Manila. (Nora Dominguez)

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