Officers from the Department of the Environment suspect that effluent waste runoffs, likely some type of pesticide, were the cause of dead fishes floating in the Placencia Lagoon earlier this week.
Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Fisheries, Adele Catzim, confirmed with The Reporter Thursday night that the Department of the Environment will initiate compliance monitoring visits with all the aquaculture facilities upstream from where the dead fishes were spotted in the lagoon, west of Placencia Village itself.
Catzim said while the fish life appears to have returned to normal and the water quality shows adequate oxygen levels, DOE personnel are conducting tests on water samples to test the nutrient levels.
“The incident appears to have been linked to effluent discharges, which occurred about seven days ago from an aquaculture facility in the area”, said Catzim. “We will work with that facility to put measures in place to prevent a reoccurrence”, she concluded, saying there is no need to issue any advisory to people who consume fish from the lagoon, considering the situation appears to have returned to normal.
Catzim says community participation helps the DOE monitor that aquaculture facilities adhere to environmentally safe practices and she encourages people to call the department in Belmopan to report suspicious practices.