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Jan 25, 2019

Report: Disadvantages of Gillnets Outweigh Benefits

Gillnets in Belize continue to be a divisive issue among environmentalists and fisherfolks. Earlier in the week, the Fisheries Department had to confiscate a large gill net which had been set up near Bird’s Isle. Several environmental groups have called for the ban on gillnets, but traditional fisherfolks are resisting, saying that banning the use of gillnets amounts to taking away their livelihoods. A recent study conducted by the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute concluded that the disadvantages of gillnets outweigh the benefits they provide to the people, the economy and the environment. The report also states that users of gillnets should have equal access to the same shared resources as other stakeholders.  Earlier in the week, News Five spoke to Communications Director for OCEANA Belize, Alyssa Carnegie who expressed similar views outlined in the report.


Alyssa Carnegie, Communications Director, OCEANA Belize

“Gillnets are very indiscriminate. One of the main advantages that people say is that it has a high per unit which means that it can catch a lot of fish at once. Typically closer to the shore you see smaller fish. You also see a lot of vessels that are passing by and at night sometimes they are not able to see those nets and the propellers get tangle into it. You know Belize is famous for its manatees that come really close to the shore. So there is a lot of other considerations that need to be taken. It is there, it is in the regulation for a reason. It just needs to be enforced.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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