No environmental impact anticipated from Chinese Deep Sea Fishing – EPA Official

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Fishin[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not predicted any harm to the environment if the Chinese investors are granted a license to fish in Guyana’s waters.

An official from the EPA, who prefers to remain anonymous told iNews that Guyana’s deep sea fishing resources has been untapped and vastly under-utilized.

Recently, the Chinese came under heavy criticism from the Environmental Community Health Organization (ECHO) and the Guyana Human Rights Association (GHRA), in relation to environmental concerns of the sustainable harvesting of Guyana’s large pelagic resources.

However, these claims were debunked by the EPA official. The official explained that the intended large pelagic [deep sea] fishing activities will have minimal effects on Guyana’s deep sea fisheries resources, biodiversity and ecology.

According to the EPA source, GHRA and ECHO have been misinformed about deep sea fishing and the Chinese investors should not be chastised.  The source stated that at the initial stages of what is available, the current interest to invest in deep sea fishing pose no immediate environmental harm.

As it is currently, Guyanese fisher folks are not engaged in deep sea fishing and according to sources close the management of the Fisheries Sector; the Guyana Association of Private Trawler Owners and Seafood Processors ((GATOSP) have not made good on opportunities that were presented to invest in deep sea fishing.

The source told iNews that local investors were never sidelined as the opportunity was always available to explore and invest in deep sea fishing.

According to the source, the deep sea fishing activities will in no way affect local fisher folks nor private fishing companies as deep sea fishing activities occur at depths and different fishing grounds to rural fisher folks and local fishing companies.

The deep sea fishing will only focus on species such as shark, king mackerels and tuna etc.

Additionally, the source indicated that the Chinese investors are keeping with guidelines as set out by the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) to take an eco-based approach while being precautionary in assessing large pelagic fish stock before conducting any actual harvesting activities.

iNews understands that the Chinese investors will take a cautious exploratory approach to the development of the fishery for large pelagic as much is not known in Guyana about this type of fishing.

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