Laguna Lake

Hydropower projects to kill Laguna Lake – fisherfolk group

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Hydropower projects will kill Laguna Lake – fisherfolk group

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Photo by himshikhartv.com.np

Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) expresses its strong opposition to the plan of the Department of Energy (DOE) to put up six pumped storage hydropower projects in Laguna de Bay for its environmental and livelihood disaster that could pose to the lake.

The DOE over the weekend has accepted the proposals or service contract (SC) applications of six hydropower firms to use water of Laguna de Bay as power source using the pumped-storage hydroelectricity. DOE said the six projects would total around 3,000 MW and will be distributed in Rizal and Laguna sides of the lake.

PAMALAKAYA said the proposed hydropower projects would entail the total privatization of the country’s largest lake on which millions of 4.9 million fishing and urban poor families depend on its aquatic resources.

We vehemently oppose this new face of corporate take-over that will further the privatization and conversion of Laguna Lake. The hydropower projects disregard the traditional use of the lake as a fishing ground and source of livelihood for small fisherfolk,”

“Aside from socio-economic cost, this project threatens the environment and aquatic life of Laguna Lake because it will more likely to pollute its water after using it as a power source,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

The group said that since Laguna de Bay had been subject to conversion and the Napindan Hydraulic Control Structure had been built to desalinate the lake, various government and private projects have taken place and the traditional use of the lake as a fishing ground has been set aside. The conversion of the lake also causes the disappearance of several fish species and fish catch depletion.

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Farmers, fishers still hold crown of thorns for being country’s poorest of the poor – PAMALAKAYA

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Farmers, fishers still hold crown of thorns for being country’s poorest of the poor –

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With his traditional fishing boat, a fisherman prepares for another long day at the sea

PAMALAKAYA

Manila, Philippines – The activist fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Wednesday was unsurprised by the recent poverty survey released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) where the fisherfolk ranks as the second poorest sector in the country, as the group claimed that past and present administrations do not actually address the prevailing poverty among the rural sector.

PSA on June 30 released its 2015 Poverty Statistics for Basic Sectors report, where farmers, fishers and children are identified as the sectors with the highest poverty incidence recorded at 34.3%, 34%, and 31.4% poverty rate, consecutively.

For its part, PAMALAKAYA blames the consistent poverty among the fishing sector on the backward, scattered, and monopolized fishing production which is reflective to the current foreign-dictated economic and foreign policies that are detrimental to the Filipino fisherfolk.

The fisherfolk group also lashes out at the government’s incompetence in protecting marine environment and resources from corporate destruction, mainly from reclamation activities and giant commercial fishing fleets that grab the fishing community and marine resources from small-scale fisherfolk.

How unfortunate that despite being agriculture-rich and archipelagic country, the rural sector remains underprivileged and poorest,”

Rampant marine resource grabbing and plunder, conversion of fishing waters into private eco-tourism and beach resorts, and the existing fishing laws that legalize the aforesaid; these are the highlights on why the fishing sector still hold the title of being one of the country’s poorest of the poor. Not to mention the lack of government’s subsidy and support that could uplift the lives of the fishing sector,”

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Fishpen demolition won’t lead to food insecurity, conversion will

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Fishpen demolition won’t lead to food insecurity, conversion willDSC_0016

Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Tuesday clarified that the campaign to demolish vast-tracts of fish pens in Laguna de Bay will not affect the food security in the country as long as it would be followed by a proper rehabilitation of the lake that would bring back its natural ecology.

The government through Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Gina Lopez is leading a national campaign to liberate the 90-thousand hectare brackish lake from private and corporate-owned fish pens. This is in accordance with President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to let small fisherfolk maximize and benefit from the lake, whom for years have been deprived of their communal fishing grounds due to fish pen proliferation.

Several fish pen structures have been ejected since January including the Gozon-owned fish pens in Cardona, Rizal measuring 100 hectares.

The fisherfolk group seen this campaign as a welcomed development for the restoration of Laguna de Bay for it will initially unwind the lake from further degradation caused by chemical-based pellet feeds use in culturing fish. Read the rest of this entry »

Laguna lake fishers laud recent fish-pen demolitions, urge for speedy removal of vast aquacultures

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Laguna lake fishers laud recent fish-pen demolitions, urge for speedy removal of vast

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Fishers pass through enclosed aquaculture

aquacultures

Manila, Philippines – The Laguna lake chapter of the fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) together with the environment alliance Save Laguna Lake Movement (SLLM) laud the recent demolition of several corporate-owned fish pens in the 90-thousand hectares brackish lake.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) spearheaded the two series of demolitions of wide fish pens on January 27 and February 24 where 3 fish pen structures covering 50 hectares each and 1 fish pen covering 25 hectares were dismantled, namely the two Gozon-owned fish pens in Cardona, Rizal, the Seven Eleven Fishing Corporation and the Habagat Multipurpose Cooperative in Binangonan, Rizal respectively.

PAMALAKAYA said so far, no small fish cages and fish traps/corals (baklad) have been subject to ejectment but they reiterate their call to spare those small fish structures owned by small fisherfolk and some fisherfolk cooperatives because it serves as their alternative livelihood to open fishing since the latter is not sustainable enough due to dwindling of fish catch.

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Laguna lake fishers, advocates picketed LLDA, DENR to demand rapid fish-pen demolition

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Laguna lake fishers, advocates picketed LLDA, DENR to demand rapid fish-pen

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Laguna Lake fishers protested DENR to demand rapid demolition of fish pens in Laguna de Bay

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Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) together with environmental alliance Save Laguna Lake Movement (SLLM) on Monday staged a picket in the offices of the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to demand the immediate and unconditional dismantling of wide fish pens owned by large corporations and individuals in Laguna de Bay.

Vast-tracts of fish pens in the 90-thousand-hectare brackish lake are now illegal after the government ceases from issuance of permits in line with its campaign to dismantle fish pens in Laguna de Bay to give way for the utilization of small fishers who have been deprived of their common fishing grounds for years due to fish pen proliferation and congestion.

Conservative data from the LLDA shows that there are approximately 13,000 hectares of private fish pens situated in Laguna de Bay. But deeper study conducted by PAMALAKAYA and SLLM claims that 60% of the size of Laguna de Bay is currently occupied by private fish pens.

PAMALAKAYA and SLLM welcome the government’s anti-fish pen campaign, but said it should be done hastily for the small fishers eagerly await their fishing zone to be reopened again for common use.

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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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Spare ‘baklad’, small fish cages from demolition – fisherfolk group

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Spare ‘baklad’, small fish cages from demolition – fisherfolk group

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a lone fisherman sails off to his baklad

Manila, Philippines – The fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) told the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DERN) and the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) to exclude ‘baklad’ or fish traps owned and operated by municipal fishermen from the government’s campaign against enclosed fish pen and fish cages in Laguna de Bay.

The moratorium of fish pen permit in Laguna de Bay starts this year in accordance with President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to dismantle vast-tract of fish pens in the 90-thousand hectare brackish lake for the utilization of small fishermen who have long been deprived of their communal fishing grounds due to fish pen proliferation.

‘Baklad’ is a kind of fish trap used by small fishers to capture fish and other marine species. Some small fishers in Laguna de Bay have resort to building ‘baklad’ because open fishing is not that suitable due to fish catch depletion caused by gradual deterioration of the lake. Nowadays, the average fish catch in Laguna de Bay is 2-3 kilos per day compared to 10-15 kilos per day before the lake deteriorates.

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