18 Feb 2013

American Samoa leader unhappy with pollution fine distribution

5:22 am on 18 February 2013

The Eastern District Governor Alo Paul Stevenson says American Samoa is not getting a fair share of monies that fishing companies pay for polluting territorial waters.

He says the territory is getting just a small portion of fines and citations levied against companies that harm its ocean.

Alo says fines issued to these companies over the past years easily exceed 10 million US dollars, yet American Samoa is only getting a small part.

In a recent case, New Zealand company Stanford Limited was fined over two million dollars for pollution violations in American Samoa waters.

The court ordered that half a million would go to the local sanctuary but the eastern district governor says money should also go the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources.

Alo says many depend on the land and sea as they face economic hardship, he believes getting these funding for American Samoa would help improve the life of the people.