Monday, November 17, 2008

Overfishing our Waters

Recently, I have been reading about overfishing. Basically, the gist of the matter is that if we continue to overfish our waters as we have in the last 50 years, it is possible that we can deplete species of fish without even knowing it.

Look at bluefin tuna. Look at sea bass. The depletion of many of the fish that we enjoy is largely due to the 12,000 pound nets that large fishing vessels use to catch fish. Quantities of them.

The New York Times, for example, recently ran an article on overfishing. When we go to a store and buy fish, we are contributing to a demand of that fish. When you read this article, you will understand which fish we should and should not buy. There is another article in the September/October edition of the Utne Reader that explains how we have overfished our waters and what we should and should not buy as consumers.

The nets are the most disturbing. Portions of both of these articles, in addition to a bunch of other items of news currently in print, has defined a major problem: nets don't just catch fish, they destroy centuries-old corral reefs, ruin underwater environments, capture and kill sea turtles, and the list goes on.

As a consumer, you can ask about the fish. If it was farmed, it it very possible that it contains chemicals. If it was caught and imported, it was more than likely caught with a net that might have snagged some precious coral somewhere. Do you want to support this destruction? You have a choice to ask about the fish you are buying.

The safest and least destructive forms of fishing occur off the coast of Canada. This would include wild salmon, North Atlantic Cod, and other types of fish.

I never really knew about this problem until my awareness was tweaked. Hopefully, I have done the same for you.