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Overfishing in the Oceans

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Overfishing in the Oceans
Introduction
Recent studies found that overfishing in the ocean is depleting sea life around the world. Overfishing in the oceans is taking the sea life at a rate too high that the fished sea life is having a hard time replenishing itself.
Part 1
Overfishing started in the early 1800’s when humans started seeking blubber for oil lamps. When humans started overfishing for blubber it drastically reduced the whole population. The fish population like the Atlantic cod, herring and sardines were fished to the point it was almost extinct by the mid 1900’s. The disruption of the food chain became catastrophic by the late 20th century. Large commercial fishing ships in today’s industry are equipped with aggressive state of the art sonars to find schools of fish fast and accurately. Some of the large commercial ships have powerful engines that can drag really big fishing equipment through the ocean, so fish really don’t have a chance to escape. There is a type of fishing that is blamed for unnecessary damage to the bottom of the ocean called bottom trawling. Marine scientist compare bottom trawling to a bulldozer, except it has nets that collect turtles, coral and everything that is in its path. It causes irreversible damage to the coral reefs, slow growing fish species and even kills the sea turtles.
Part 2
Solutions that we can do to help prevent over fishing in the oceans are, for one to change our eating habits. We don’t have to stop eating fish but if we were to replace tuna with other things like anchovies, sardines, and squid we can reverse the overharvesting of the other species that we have a taste for. If we can reserve the sea life that is being over populated as luxury merchandise that can help the eco system replenish the species that are harvested to the point of being extinct. Secondly, zoning every space in the ocean for different types of species and only allowing either commercial or recreational boats in those different zones. Also, limiting the boats to a certain amount of time and a certain amount that they can catch will help with overharvesting. Having a strict zoning plan will protect the species that are in danger for extinction and will also allow how often they are to be fishing in, if those areas are allowed to be fished in at all. Lastly, a new study that offers a solution to help prevent overfishing in the oceans is called catch share program. A catch share program will replace rules controlling how fishing will practiced, also having a method that will hold fishermen accountable for meeting their target. Fishermen are granted a percentage of the share of the total allowable catch. As long as fishermen do not exceed their share, they have greater flexibility to fish and can also be granted exclusive access to certain fishing zones. The catch share programs are to hopefully turn a devastating situation into a very large opportunity to promote better food security, create jobs and to bring back the ecosystems.
Part 3
The consequences for overfishing include: reckless overfishing through unlawful means, long term effects on the oceans eco system, reoccurring overfishing will suddenly decrease in the fish stocks, and the prey – predator relationship in the food chain will be altered. The ethical issues that people are facing today are that almost 40 million people solely rely on the fishing industries for their source of income and to support their families and communities. To relate this to Saint Leo’s core values fishermen need to be more skillful and responsible on how often they fish a certain type of product, they need to listen, learn and change whatever they can do to help their community and be respectful of the rules given to them. When fishermen do their job correctly and follow the fishing rules they can actually help the eco system as well as keeping them in the business longer because they are not overfishing. I think if the problem is not corrected then I think the fishermen, their families and communities will suffer big time, putting even more people into unemployment.
Conclusion
To conclude that overfishing is a very big problem, not just in the United States but all over the world. Overfishing didn’t just start happening within the last 10 years it started a very long time ago and has only been getting worse. Basically, what it boils down to is that if fishermen don’t play by the rules whether they are commercial or recreational everyone will suffer the consequences: from losing their jobs, people paying even more for a particular product because it will become very rare and will also change the food chain.
References
http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/critical-issues-overfishing/ http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/22/world/oceans-overfishing-climate-change http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/campaigns/oceans/overfishing/ http://conservationmagazine.org/2008/07/10-solutions-to-save-the-ocean/ http://www.edf.org/news/new-study-offers-viable-solution-overfishing http://kingfish.coastal.edu/marine/faculty/erinb/BurgeTeaEthicsreduced.pdf http://www.helium.com/items/2142123-the-ecological-and-environmental-consequences-of-overfishing

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