Laguna Lake Development Authority

Maynilad slammed for exploiting lake-water of Laguna de Bay

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Maynilad slammed for exploiting lake-water of Laguna de Bay

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Laguna de Bay

Manila, Philipines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Wednesday accused the Maynilad Water Services Inc. (MWSI) for raking profit out of the 90-thousand hectare Laguna de Bay that is primarily source of livelihood of more than 14 million of fisherfolk and residents along the country’s largest lake.

Through its filtration facility located in Putatan, Muntinlupa City, the MWSI has been extracting 150 million liters per day of potable water supplying to more than 1 million of its customers in the Western part of National Capital Region (NCR) including the cities of Makati, Pasay, Paranaque, Las Pinas, and Muntinlupa; as well as towns of Bacoor, Cavite City, Imus, Kawit, Rosario, and Noveleta in Cavite province.

The group said MWSI abstraction of lake water is among the many corporate activities that gradually destroy the ecological balance and nature of Laguna de Bay, adversely affecting the livelihood of small-fisherfolk.

Maynilad greedily consumes the water of Laguna de Bay for its super profit at the cost of productive fishing grounds of millions of small-fisherfolk and people engaged in fish culture activities,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

The group also said MWSI is putting the lives of its millions of customers at stake, as the lake water of Laguna de Bay is categorized as Class-C water which means it is only suitable for fishing and recreational use and not for drinking purpose.

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Proliferation of Hyacinth in Laguna Lake caused by lack of salt water – fisherfolk group

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Proliferation of Hyacinth in Laguna Lake caused by lack of salt water – fisherfolk

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Laguna de Bay infested w/ water hyacinth

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Manila, Philippines – The fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Sunday blamed the excessive proliferation of water hyacinth in Laguna de Bay to the Napindan Hydraulic Control Structure (NHCS) in Taguig City that prevents the entry of salt water into the 90-thousand hectare brackish lake.

Towns of Binangonan and Cardona in the province of Rizal are now heavily surrounded by water hyacinths due to the “amihan” or northeast monsoon, affecting the waterways of thousands of fisherfolk who strive to sail out of the lake to do fishing activities.

PAMALAKAYA said saltwater that came from Manila Bay via Pasig River is essential to Laguna de Bay because it serves as nutrients to maintain the lake’s ecological balance and brackish water by nature is a combination of fresh and saltwater.

Since the construction of the Napindan, various pests thrive in the lake, including water hyacinths, snake turtle, knife fish, and janitor fish. All these affect the livelihood of small fisherfolk because predator species such as knife fish and snake turtle prey on small fish preventing them to grow; while the water hyacinths obstruct the movement of fishing boats,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

The group urged the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) to mobilize rehabilitation funds to support the affected fisherfolk in Laguna de Bay plagued by the water hyacinths.

Moreover, PAMALAKAYA reiterated its call to permanently open the Napindan structure and let Manila Bay and Laguna Lake waters mingle to rehabilitate the degrading lake and bring back its natural abundance. ###

Fisherfolk slams CA-ruling on Laguna Lake fishpens

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Fisherfolk slams CA-ruling on Laguna Lake fishpensimg_20170213_103812

Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Sunday slams the Court of Appeals (CA) over its decision to abort the government’s campaign against vast-tracts of fishpens in the 90-thousand hectare Laguna de Bay, saying the decision is a complete turnaround on the order of President Rodrigo Duterte to open the biggest lake to small-fisherfolk.

Based on the report of the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA), at least 1,600 hectares of privately-owned fishpens have been demolished since the government launched an unprecedented campaign against wide fishpens in Laguna de Bay last year to pave way for the restoration of the polluted lake and bring back the traditional common use of its fishing waters to small-fisherfolk.

We are enraged by the treacherous ruling of the Court of Appeals, the Laguna Lake fisherfolk have been looking forward for the complete clearing of fishpens in the lake. For years, the Laguna de Bay have been occupied by wide fishpens owned by fishing corporations and private individuals including ex-military generals and local politicians. The CA-ruling shows that vested interest of few giant fishing firms and individuals prevail over the collective clamor of fisherfolk for their right to fishing grounds,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement, also blaming the proliferation of fishpens for the pollution of the lake because it uses chemical based feeds to culture fish.

The group also lashed out at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and its attached agency, the LLDA for failing to uphold the campaign that was started by former DENR Secretary Gina Lopez.

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With or without Lopez, demolition of fishpens in Laguna de Bay must proceed – PAMALAKAYA

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With or without Lopez, demolition of fishpens in Laguna de Bay must proceed – img_20170109_101828PAMALAKAYA

Manila, Philippines – Despite the rejection on the confirmation of Environment Secretary Gina Lopez on her post by the Commission on Appointments (CA) on May 3, the national fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) still pushes President Rodrigo Duterte and the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) to continue its anti-fishpen campaign in the 90 thousand hectares brackish Laguna de Bay which was spearheaded by Secretary Lopez.

We lament the rejection of Secretary Lopez as Environment Secretary; we have lost a dependable ally against large-scale mines that destroy the environment and the livelihood of the rural people. She shows that she is the most competent Environment Chief by standing firm against powerful giant mines without hesitation. She is also committed on seeking consultations with the grassroots to hear their views on government and corporate projects that will affect their civil and economic rights,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

PAMALAKAYA said the campaign to dismantle vast-tract of fishpens in Laguna de Bay kicked off on January 27 where based on the data of LLDA, more than 1,000 hectares of aquaculture structures have been already ejected from the lake. But the fisherfolk group said it is not enough to restore the degrading lake for almost 60% of its total size is still occupied by wide fishpens owned by private corporations and individuals.

The government must continue to chase down thousands of hectares of fishpens owned by few big-time fishing firms and powerful individuals; some are local politicians and military generals conniving with the local government units and corrupt LLDA officials to monopolize and grab the rich fishing ground of small fisherfolk,” said Hicap.

The fisherfolk group said aside from dismantling of fishpens, Secretary Lopez was also convinced by the fisherfolk to stop all the reclamation activities in Laguna Lake that primarily contribute to its pollution and degradation and in order to rehabilitate the lake.

Whoever succeeds Secretary Lopez on her post should continue the pro-people policies that Lopez has started. We are already fed up by a traditional Environment Chief that is incompetent enough to prevent environmental plunderers from their destructive corporate activities at the cost of fragile environment and people’s lives,” ended Hicap. ###

Addressing root causes of Laguna de Bay deterioration is a path towards its genuine rehabilitation – fisherfolk to new LLDA Chief

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Addressing root causes of Laguna de Bay deterioration is a path towards its genuine

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The worsening condition of Laguna de Bay

rehabilitation – fisherfolk to new LLDA Chief

Manila, Philippines – The fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) dares the newly-appointed General Manager (GM) of the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) to decisively address fundamental problems besetting Laguna de Bay that result to its gradual degradation.

On Monday, Nerius Acosta has been replaced by Joey Medina as the new General Manager of the Laguna Lake Development Authority.

In a statement, PAMALAKAYA said the new Laguna de Bay GM will be met with many challenges he acquired from his predecessor that  needs to confront thoroughly like the effects of past government projects that contribute to the deterioration of the 90-thousand hectare brackish lake. PAMALAKAYA said getting rid of wide-fish pens in Laguna de Bay is part of the new General Manager’s urgent task to rehabilitate and revive the lake.

The new LLDA GM should face the fundamental problems and issues besetting Laguna de Bay fair and square. Laguna de Bay and its fishersfolk doesn’t need another incompetent and mediocre LLDA Chief that will do nothing on his post but to let numerous destructive projects push through even under the tip of its nose,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

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PAMALAKAYA demands compensation from big fishing firms over Laguna de Bay invasion

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PAMALAKAYA demands compensation from big fishing firms over Laguna de Bay

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Fish pen in Laguna de Bay

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Manila, Philippines – The fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) is asking Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Gina Lopez to demand for compensatory damages from the corporate and individual fish pen operators who occupy large chunk of the 90-thousand hectare Laguna de Bay since 1990s.

PAMALAKAYA welcomed Secretary Lopez’s planned imposition of moratorium on the issuance and renewal of fish pen permits this coming January but said DENR should make those fish pen operators pay for their damages on the environment of the lake and the livelihood of the Laguna Lake fishers who have lost their traditional communal fishing grounds due to fish pen proliferation.

Laguna de Bay has become congested since fish pens sprout like mushrooms in the brackish lake. This inflicts severe damage to the lake because fish pens use chemical-based substance as feeds to culture fish. Small fishers suffer more because it narrow their traditional fishing grounds and now they huddle over the small fishing waters left,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

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‘Reclamation as usual’ in Rizal part of Laguna de Bay

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‘Reclamation as usual’ in Rizal part of Laguna de Bay

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Waste and land filling in Angono, Rizal

Angono, Rizal – Local chapter of the fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) in Angono, Rizal laments that dumping of waste and landfill in the Angono part of Laguna de Bay are still ongoing even after dialogue with the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on October 7.

Under the Angono local government’s ‘zero squatter program’, it consistently reclaims some of its coastal areas using landfill combinations of toxic industrial, domestic and bio-hazard wastes. The ‘Kalayaan Angono Dream Neighborhood Association’ or KANDRENAI in its Brgy. Kalayaan is a 5-hectare urban poor community composed of almost 300 families. It was once a portion of the 90-thousand hectare Laguna de Bay but during the 90s, the local government started dumping wastes and land onto the water and later on became a housing project.

Contrary to LLDA’s statement during our dialogue last week, dumping of wastes and land in Laguna de Bay continues. Reclamation of Laguna de Bay using various wastes pollutes the lake even more and destroys the fishing grounds and the environment,” Avelina Anie, member of Pamalakaya in Angono, Rizal.

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