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September 28, 2009

Aquacalypse Now
The bad news is I can't take credit for that awesome title. It belongs to The New Republic's new article on "The End of Fish" by marine biologist Daniel Pauly. Indeed, it's in the article itself where you'll find the really bad news:
Unfortunately, it is not just the future of the fishing industry that is at stake, but also the continued health of the world's largest ecosystem. While the climate crisis gathers front-page attention on a regular basis, people--even those who profess great environmental consciousness--continue to eat fish as if it were a sustainable practice. But eating a tuna roll at a sushi restaurant should be considered no more environmentally benign than driving a Hummer or harpooning a manatee. In the past 50 years, we have reduced the populations of large commercial fish, such as bluefin tuna, cod, and other favorites, by a staggering 90 percent. One study, published in the prestigious journal Science, forecast that, by 2048, all commercial fish stocks will have "collapsed," meaning that they will be generating 10 percent or less of their peak catches. Whether or not that particular year, or even decade, is correct, one thing is clear: Fish are in dire peril, and, if they are, then so are we.
It's worth reading the whole thing. So go do it.

Photo credit: The New Republic

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