CONSERVATION COMPLIANCE UNIT
The Conservation Compliance Unit is responsible for prosecution and enforcement of the Fisheries Laws in the waters of Belize.
Name of Programs:
The Conservation Compliance Unit (CCU) is comprised of a Fisheries Officer (Coordinator), an Assistant Fisheries Officer (Supervisor), a Chief Coxswain, three Coxswains, five Assistant Coxswains, and one mechanic. Apart from the Belize City main operations, there is another enforcement branch in Punta Gorda Town, comprising of a staff of officers. In addition, a Fisheries Inspector is attached to each unit, whose main responsibilities include the prosecution of offenders.
Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries:
To reduce the number of arrests as a result of illegal fishing practices.
SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES /OBJECTIVES OF THE UNIT:
- To enforce the fisheries laws and regulations throughout the country of Belize.
- To conduct educational sessions with fisher folks in order increase awareness on the responsible fishing practices.
- to enhance their ability to understand the disadvantages of unacceptable fishing practices.
- To deliver lectures in educational institutions and other relevant organizations, in regards to fishing activities and fisheries legislation.
- To suggest amendments to certain regulations for improved fisheries management, which may include.
- Limited entry
- Species protection
- Seasonal closure of commercial stocks
- Fishing gear restriction
- Regulating category of fishing licenses
- Landing of products
- To work along with all Marine Protected Areas and NGO’s, to discourage illegal harvesting of marine products from within the said reserves.
- To assist in the management and protection of the coastal zone and the reef system of Belize.
Policies/Strategies/Mechanism in place:
- Provide support on joint patrols with other regulatory agencies such as the Belize National Coast Guard, Police Department, Port Authority, Customs Department and Belize Defence Force.
- Provided assistance in educational programs to transport students to and from marine reserves.