As Pakistan's marine resources are fast depleting due to ill-planned, heavy fishing and pollution. Environmentalists have called for saving these resources and said reliable scientific data is dire need in this regard for planning and policy making about these resources.
Experts said this while speaking at the closing ceremony of the project ‘Marine Fishing Vessel Census in Pakistan’, organised by the World Wide Fund for Nature-Pakistan (WWFN-P) at a local hotel on Saturday evening.
The project iis jointly conducted by WWFN-P and Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), funded by Marine Fisheries Department, Sindh Fisheries Department and Balochistan Fisheries Department as partners.
It is a one-year long project targeted at conducting a frame survey of marine fishing vessels in use, landing sites and available fishing services in the whole coastal areas of the country. It was implemented in Sindh and Balochistan during the period of July 10 to June 11. While giving an overview of the said survey results, FAO’s Chief Technical Advisor Paul Fanning identified the growth in number of vessels from 6,488 in 1986 to 15,000 in 2010 which shows a big strain on the resources if not checked, with a hopeful reducing growth pattern is also being predicted.
Steps taken include capacity building, scientific infrastructure establishment, fish stocktaking, vessel census and catch monitoring, he added, next steps identified are defining conservation requirements, and designing and implementing an effective fisheries monitoring system in the country.
They are hopeful that govts will take all necessary steps in this regard. Public is also requested to stop or at least reduce pollution in the rivers and the seas.