The municipalities of Talisay, Malvar, Tanauan, Laurel, Agoncillo, Santa Teresita, Cuenca, Alitagtag, Mataas na Kahoy, Balete, San Nicolas, Lemery and Taal, and Lipa City, all in Batangas province, and Tagaytay City in Cavite province share jurisdiction and mandate over TVPL under the National Integrated Protected Areas System (Nipas) Act.
Being a protected area and a source of income and livelihood of many fishermen, including fish-cage operators, the BFAR and BMB exercise joint regulatory powers over TVPL.
'The management plan of TVPL already seeks to do this.
So perhaps we just need a rallying point for concerted action for TVPL, it could just be 'to save the tawilis.' The continued existence of the tawilis can, thus, be considered a good indicator for successful management efforts in the TVPL,' she said.
The TVPL is the subject of a continuing mandamus issued by the Supreme Court in February 2012.
Sought for comment, Palmones told the BusinessMiror the decline of the rare tawilis and other fish in the TVPL is a result of decades of neglect and abuse.
'This is the right time to review what we have started in the TVPL,' he said in a telephone interview on January 29.
'The continued depletion of tawilis, considered as an endemic treasure of the Philippines, clearly demands for punitive action on LGUs and businesses within the TVPL,' he said.
According to Palmones, residents and establishments, especially livestock farms around TVPL never ceased on discharging pollutants and untreated wastewater to tributaries of the lake.
'The DENR must resume funding and empowering the PASu [Protected Area Superintendent] of TVPL to fully implement the continuing mandamus issued by the Court of Appeals in 2012 to save Taal Lake, and our tawilis,' he said.
Bascos, Batangas Provincial Environment and Natural Resource Officer (Penro) and concurrent TVPL Protected Area superintendent, part of the continuing effort to save the tawilis is protecting and conserving the TVPL, particularly the Taal Lake's ecosystem.