Monday, November 15, 2010

Saying Bye-bye To Our Sushi

Even when everyone agrees on the fact, humans can still disagree on what to do. A few months ago, I posted about how the Atlantic bluefin tuna is heading towards extinction due to over-fishing.

Industrial-scale fishing in the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic over the past 40 years has depleted stocks by 85% but instead of stopping, nations are now “discussing” how much tuna they can fish from the sea without destroying the species (and the multi-billion dollar business that goes along with it).

On one side are the conservationists who say that the species will die out unless the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) suspends or at the very least heavily reduces the catch. On the other side is the fishing industry who says that thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of people will be out of jobs if fishing is suspended. Instead they are saying the 13,500-tonnes annual quota will be enough to allow stocks to increase.

The one thing everyone agrees on?

The 13,500-tonnes quota is widely ignored! Everyone agrees that despite steps to increase enforcement of the quota, almost every country in the ICCAT catch more tuna than they should. In 2007, investigations shows that France caught more than double their quota that year.

So everyone agrees that the quota is useless, that it is widely ignored and yet this quota is the basis the fishing industry is basing their argument on? I guess everyone can say bye-bye to their sushi.

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