Running Out of Fish

Posted on May 11, 2008  Comments (1)

I have posted before about the overfishing problems: Fishless FutureSelFISHingChinook Salmon Vanish Without a Trace. Here is an emotional article on the problem – How the world’s oceans are running out of fish

Ninety years of industrial-scale exploitation of fish has, he and most scientists agree, led to ‘ecological meltdown’. Whole biological food chains have been destroyed.

In 2002, the year an EU report revealed that the Senegalese fish biomass had declined 75 per cent in 15 years, Brussels bought rights for four years’ fishing of tuna and bottom-dwelling fish on the Senegal coasts, for just $4m a year. In 2006, access for 43 giant EU factory fishing vessels to Mauritania’s long coastline was bought for £24.3m a year. It’s estimated that these deals have put 400,000 west African fishermen out of work; some of them now take to the sea only as ferrymen for desperate would-be migrants to the Canary Islands and Europe.

Protecting up to 40 per cent of the world’s oceans in permanent refuges would enable the recovery of fish stocks and help replenish surrounding fisheries. ‘The cost, according to a 2004 survey, would be between £7bn and £8.2bn a year, after set-up. But put that against the £17.6bn a year we currently spend on harmful subsidies that encourage overfishing.’

The Newfoundland cod fishery, for 500 years the world’s greatest, was exhausted and closed in 1992, and there’s still no evidence of any return of the fish. Once stocks dip below a certain critical level, the scientists believe, they can never recover because the entire eco-system has changed.

One Response to “Running Out of Fish”

  1. Jag
    May 18th, 2008 @ 1:15 am

    Hi there,

    I remember taking a Geography module in my university days on Bio environment. And I remember vividly a video showing us on about over-fishing and the harm it is causing to the ecosystem of the ocean.

    Quite sad to see that such instances are still prevalent till today.

    I dread to think what might happen in the next 50 years. Perhaps there will be more fish on the table for us all.


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