Catbalogan City goes green and blue for marine protection

The continuous decline of fish production in Samar Sea and Maqueda Bay poses a remarkable alarm to fishery industry in the region. It is of common experience that people living along the coasts of the above-mentioned bodies of water were suffering from commercial overfishing, and yet, the incessant exploitation of the marine resources is inevitable. This environmental confrontation will indisputably prevail if there will be no measure applied by the responsible agencies such as the LGUs and NGAs.

The Local Government of Catbalogan City had launched several Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) along its city waters. This is to curb illegal fishing activities and provide a haven for fish and other fishery products to reproduce and maintain equilibrium of their population with the environment. It is in this light that it requested assistance from Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Regional Field Unit VIII (BFAR RFU8) to provide three hundred (300) pieces of giant clams to be dispersed at the city’s MPAs.

On October 31, some two hundred (200) giant clams were transported by Assistant City Agriculturist Daniel Daguman and City Environment and Natural Resources Officer Designate Edgar Guya from the hatchery at Guiuan, Eastern Samar to Catbalogan City and were received by no less than City Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan.

The City of Catbalogan is also keen on enforcing fishery laws rules and regulations. Among the activities that are in queue this year are Fishery Law Enforcement Trainings, Coastal Resource Management Trainings, and livelihood trainings along the coastal communities in the city as a result of Bottom-Up Budgeting (BUB). The objective of these activities is to restore the depleted marine resources along Maqueda Bay and Samar Sea and, in effect, increase fishery production in the locality.

Additional 2,000 pieces of abalone, 1,500 pieces of sea cucumber, and 1,500 pieces of blue crabs as seeds for dispersal at our designated Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) have been requested from BFAR to augment the initiative. This proposed undertaking is projected to be of help in restoring, rehabilitating and conserving the flora and fauna that is still available to us.

(with reports from the Office of the City Agriculture and CENRO; Photos courtesy of Michael Balan)

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