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Green Surf - No to the tuna factories
By Alex Espir

Pavones and the Golfo Dulce remain under threat still. Southern Zone locals, fishermen, surfers, environmentalists and those with tourism-related businesses continue to fight efforts to put a tuna farm in this pristine part of Costa Rica. This issue has re-emerged, most recently, MINAET (Costa Rica’s Ministry of Environment, Energy, and Telecommunications) has just approved the project and now it’s in the hands of Granjas Atuneras, S.A. a Venezuelan and Spanish company, awaiting final approval.

The major threats to the area are:
• The death and destruction of fish that don’t survive the netting and 30-day towing process. Many dolphin, marlin, sailfish, tuna and other marine life will die in the process.
• A no-fishing zone affecting local fishermen and negatively impact the community.
• The use of huge amounts of feed to fatten up the tuna so they can be sold and flown to Japan will cause many problems. Frozen sardines brought over from Peru can contaminate local waters with foreign elements introducing new viruses and unknown illness to the local ecosystem.
• The cages will pose a serious risk to sea turtles, humpback whales, whale sharks and other marine life that passes through the mouth of the Golfo Dulce.
• Many tuna will die in captivity due to stress and weakened immune systems. These dead fish and feed debris will attract sharks and other unwanted predators in waters that are enjoyed by local surfers, divers and tourists.
• The concentrated faecal matter from the caged tuna will pose the biggest threat to the Golfo Dulce..
Huge amount of opposition has meant that the project has been stalled whilst further environmental assessments are conducted. There is still no guarantee that the project will be terminated. The collective NGO, Pretoma, is coordinating the fight but require support and funding to continue the hard work. For more information or to donate to the cause, go straight to www.pretoma.com they will use 100% of the money for other attorney fees related to this cause.

This page brought to you by Innocent Surf School.

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