Burned out truck and boat in Golfo de Santa Clara. Burned out truck and boat in Golfo de Santa Clara.

Riled fishermen attack federal officials

They were upset over a delay in getting a permit to fish corvina

Angry fishermen in Sonora attacked environmental officials Wednesday night and torched 15 vehicles, including trucks, boats, and ATVs.

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Worried that their livelihoods were being threatened by federal environmental and health assessment programs, the fishermen, from Golfo de Santa Clara, physically attacked 28 officials from the federal environmental agency Profepa, the National Protected Areas Commission (Conanp) and the National Aquaculture and Fisheries Commission (Conapesca).

The fishermen’s beef is that they want to be able to fish corvina, but the issuing of a permit by the National Aquaculture and Fisheries Commission (Conapesca) has been delayed.

New regulations require that an environmental impact statement must be approved by the Environmental Secretariat (Semarnat) before the fishing vessels sail.

According to the federal environmental agency Profepa, the fishermen’s collective didn’t file the statement until February 22, a few days before the start of the corvina fishing season. Officials said it showed irresponsibility on the part of the leadership.

All fishing activity in the upper area of the Sea of Cortés is currently restricted as part of efforts to control the illegal fishing of totoaba, and the indirect and negative impact that activity has on the dwindling population of the vaquita porpoise.

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Along with tighter fishing controls came a red tide warning earlier this year, limiting the fishing of clams and oysters in the waters between Golfo de Santa Clara and Salina bay.

The fishermen have stated they are in a “desperate” situation, and the added inconvenience of the compulsory environmental impact statement makes things worse.

Source: El Universal (sp)

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  • K. Chris C.

    “Angry fishermen in Sonora attacked environmental officials Wednesday night and torched 15 vehicles, including trucks, boats, and ATVs.”

    Now that’s the way it’s done. Drop the onus on the violence-monopoly criminals preventing one from making a living and feeding one’s family. As gramps used to say, “Sometimes you got to push the go-round to their come around.”

    An American citizen, not US subject.

    • Russ Blackman

      EL Alto Golfo is getting a lot of attention now and maybe rightly so. However there is a major depletion of the Sea of Cortez in general and officials are not reacting. In the Santa Rosalia / Mulege area where once I could walk down to the beach and catch a dinner of any number of different fishes now there is little chance to catch anything. Nets are everywhere and have thoroughly cleaned the fishery. On the rare occasions when a school of fish show they are wiped out quickly. No consideration to future fishermen or their families. A major draw for tourist is fishing and it supports a huge population. Those tourist are not returning and the tourist dollar is sourly missed. So when the fishermen complain about enforcement, I believe It’s about time for a wake up call to those that abuse their resourse.

  • Jumex

    Burn a mans truck and he will walk for a day. Teach a man to burn trucks and he will do 10-15 years in prison.

  • kallen

    Who are the fisherman trying to kid? They could care less about corvina. They want a pretense for being out there so they can continue to fish for totoaba.

  • miabeach

    Make that wall fireproof.

  • Robert Bejsovec

    It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this one out, all U need to do is travel the back roads of Mexico to C there is no more natural habitat roaming the hills of Mexico, no deer, no bears, no lions, no squares, nothing and now they want the last Totoaba and Vaquita Porpoise. These people have no Sole!

  • WestCoastHwy

    Jesus Christ, Mary, and Joseph, what’s up with these Hillbillies? You need to pay the bribe (mordida) just like everyone else!

  • Josefina

    wow depressing, por eso mexico no progresa, the faun of Mexico is so precious and has historically had no protection, in this case if the industry wanted to fish they should have taken the environmental requirements seriously.

  • Mona F Sanchez

    We did everything we could to get our fishing permits on time we even send some representatives to Mexico city to talk to the president of Canapesca and they came back home with a No as an answer …Tell me .. after trying everything in our power and not get any good results from the federal government how you think 300 thousand families suppose to react to this heartless situation. We don’t want money from the federal government or any charity we just want to work. If the people reacted to burned the conapesca and profepa trucks is because they want to put pressure to the federal and to the president EPN to give us good results on this matter , and is a lie that people got hurt , the conapesca and profepa agents run and hide like rats before things got out of control…. and before talking bad about this people do some research first .Not all the fisherman in my town do the illegal fishing of the totoba okay!!!!! La VAquita is just a lie from the U.S and Mexico ,they want to stop the fishing in Baja California sur to the north and on the sea of Alto Golfo because Since in 1974 it was confirmed that the peninsula of Baja California keeps beneath mantles of gas and oil including larger than the State of Chiapas, because their deposits cover the depths of the waters of the Gulf of California what we call our sea EL Alto Golfo. We’re not planning on giving up we are going to protect or sea from any drilling . That’ll be the end to any species on this ocean and our way of sustain for each family.

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