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2013 La Brea Oil Spill
Public health threat…statements must be supported by science, not speculation

Public health threat…statements must be supported by science, not speculation

Date: June 18th, 2018

Dear Editor/Newsroom,

FFOS take strong objection to unsubstantiated and speculative statements.

At the beginning of every rainy season since the December 17th 2013 Petrotrin oil spill, literally hundreds of thousands of dead fish, pelicans, magnificent frigate birds, corbeaux, bottlenose dolphins, shrimp, crabs, stingrays and other marine creatures wash ashore dead or dying on the beaches of La Brea.

On Sunday 17th June, 2018 on Point Sable beach, La Brea, FFOS recorded over twelve species of dead fish, one corbeaux, in addition to a dead bottle-nose dolphin.(see pictures attached.)

Five years after the daily ongoing continuous fish kill that started on 17th December 2013, the cause of the death has still not been determined by our Government Agencies including the IMA and the EMA.

Without any chemical analysis from our Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) or Environmental Management Authority (EMA) to determine that the fish was chemical free we noted the superstitious conclusions by the President of the La Brea fisherfolk say that its dumped fish.

Never once has the EMA, IMA or the Ministry of Planning Development identify and specify the source of the ongoing 5-year La Brea fish kill.

Since last year, the Ministry of Planning and Development stated that they will commence sediment testing in the Dec 2013, oil impacted areas. Has this monitoring programme commenced? What are the reports of the area?

The Authorities have remained tongue-tied and shrouded in secrecy as to what is happening to our La Brea inshore fishery.

Instead of selling out the fishery, we should ask ourselves, why would fishermen dump a 4 lb commercial fish? Why would fisherfolk willingly sabotage their own livelihood?

FFOS continue to appeal to the Government to:

  1. Close the “Petrotrin Red Zone” area from Mosquito Creek to Point Fortin,from any crab catching, shrimp trawling or any type of fishing
  2. To remove residual contaminated sand from this area which is lodged in the Aripero Mangrove/Lagoon.
  3. To continuously test specimens from this area to determine the safety of fish or shrimp for consumption by testing for cancer causing hydrocarbons and heavy metals associated with hydrocarbon contamination.
  4. To consider fair compensation for our Southern fishers who have been abandoned for 5 years

FFOS continue to appeal to our Prime zMinister to ensure that public health is guarded.

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