ACTIVIST group Fishermen and Friends of the Sea (FFOS) says it has found at least 16 species of fish washed up on the beaches La Brea.
The group is calling for proper investigations to be conducted on what they are claiming as “daily fish kills” and believes that residual chemicals used in the 2013 Petrotrin oil spill clean-up continues to pose a threat to the south western peninsula.
In a release, FFOS secretary Gary Aboud called for Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley to intervene in the matter to stop fishing in the area and issue warnings to the public.
FFOS stated with the commencement of the rainy season, there is expected to be more sightings of dead fish.
FFOS stated that it visited Point Sable Beach, again on Saturday around 5a.m., during the low tide to find the beach littered with dead and dying fish. These included: Blinch, Bouche, Catfish, Cavali, Chip Chip, Cutlass fish, Fowl Fish, Grunt, Herring, Mullet, Moonshine, Plato, Power, Rokando, Salmon, and Sapate, a total of 16 species.
The group questioned the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) and Environmental Management Authority (EMA) response of the dead fish being dumped fish.
Aboud said that the EMA is not coordinating with the local fisher folk in the area and are under reporting the issue.
“The EMA field officers should work along the local fisher folk to acquire the skill to spot fish carcases on the horizon. Why does the EMA lock out the primary stakeholders and resident fisher-folk who continue to report these dangers?
FFOS have advised the EMA (on multiple occasions) that site visits need to be conducted at dawn at the high/ falling tide before the dogs, raptors and corbeaux feed on fish carcasses,” it stated.
FFOS said that it will continue to conduct weekly site visits and inform the public of the fish kills occurring in La Brea, especially now with the commencement of the rainy season.
“We expect the daily carnage to accelerate as the COREXIT and other still unknown chemicals and dispersants used in the 2013 Petrotrin oil spill are being washed out of the Aripero River and mangroves where they were never removed. FFOS call on the Right Honourable Prime Minister to intervene in this matter of grave public health where FFOS have shown with accredited laboratory reports that fish obtained on the beaches of La Brea contained dangerous high levels of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are known cancer causing triggers.
Unless the PM intervenes to stop fishing in this area, to clean up the residual chemicals, and issue warnings, shrimp and fish consumers will continue to be at greater risk of degenerative cancers,” the group stated.