ALAMINOS CITY – When a validation team from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and other agencies went to this city's coastal areas, the sea water was very clear and different species of fish can be seen swimming under. "It's an everyday scenery," City Agriculture Officer Arceli Talania said of coastal scene. Talania said the clean sea, the shift from bangus to high value species, the stoppage of illegal fishing, the massive reforestation of mangrove areas and the replanting of coral reefs won for this city this year's Search for "Malinis at Masaganang Karagatan"(MMK).

Talania said the city stopped producing bangus (milkfish) as the production of the national fish in fishpen contributes to pollution of marine environment that could affect the
Hundred Islands National Park(HINP). Instead, it now produces oysters and high value fish species like lapu-lapu in waters off four villages identified as fishery production areas under the city's comprehensive land use plan. Talania said the city government decided to do away with bangus production because the fish are fed purely commercial feeds which cause water pollution and affect the HINP.

Lapu-lapu on the other hand, is fed only with trash fish, so their culture is not harmful to the marine environment. Lapu-lapu on the other hand, is fed only with trash fish, so their culture is not harmful to the marine environment.Pangasinan is the top bangus producer in the country, with massive production areas in Anda, Bolinao, and Sual that accounts for 80 percent of the total production; and other towns like Lingayen, Binmaley, San Fabian and Dagupan City which produces the remaining 20 percent. Talania said some 55 hectares of fish pens have been established in barangays Cayucay, Baley a Daan, Mona and Pangapisan, for exclusive culture of lapu-lapu. The pens are
operated by 30 owners. She said there will be no more expansion of the fish pens. On the other hand, oyster culture occupies a total of 70 hectares. The city maintains a total of 49 hectares of mangrove forests in nine barangays, and has signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources for replanting 45 hectares of coastal areas with mangroves.

The city government has also replanted 47,000 coral fragments in the Hundred Islands National Park. Of the total, 35,000 were planted with the help of the Pangasinan State
University, Department of Science and Technology and BFAR; 5,000 with the Pioneer Epoxy Foundation, and 7,000 by the city government.



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