Bohol waters under attack

June 29, 2007

It seems that greed is again threatening the continued survival of Bohol’s seas.

Does it make sense to destroy a renewable resource beyond recognition to exploit a non-renewable resource whose continued use pollutes the modern world? Does it make sense to even risk oil leaks and oil spills in an area earning three times more with the tourist trade?

Consider the possibility of losing not only the tourist trade, but also the destruction of the fishing industry. Fishing in the area is apparently going to be stopped while these oil explorers negotiate their way into those little oil fields. And even if they do manage to find oil or natural gas, drilling will mean no fishing until the field is depleted while fisherfolk get what? Nothing.
We are talking about entire communities deprived of livelihood and of food. And even if they don’t find oil, looking for oil will have already done its damage, and fish stocks will not return for weeks, months, or maybe even years. In the meantime, what can fishermen do? Nothing.

If with such activities as encroachment of commercial fishers into municipal waters and such projects as manmade islands and reclamation the Philippine government has rigorous procedures for private businessmen, is it not reasonable to expect greater vigilance for those projects which will disrupt or possibly destroy the local fishing industry and the food security of most of Central Visayas?

Now, while we can yet do something about it, let’s be aware and oppose the seismic survey of the Cebu-Bohol Strait!
Mr. Oilman, please realize we’re not interested in destroying our ecosystem for a few barrels of oil. We will be happy to rely on our own resources. People have never died because they couldn’t find oil, but people have died because they couldn’t find food.

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