Sustainable Seafood apps bring seafood consumption with a conscience right to your phone!
I’m notoriously behind the times when it comes to mobile technology. When I finally got a “smart” phone I had fun playing Tetris for a few hours, then stupidly went back to using it as just a phone.
So I’m a little late to the party on this – but in case you are too – sustainable seafood apps. What fantastic apps! I can now tossrecycle my crinkled, waterlogged wallet card from Monterrey Bay Aquarium/Seafood Watch. Continue reading →
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Bluefin tuna could become extinct as soon as 2012. The main reasons are the booming sushi industry and the fact that the Bluefin is extremely overfished. Three in four Bluefin tunas are caught illegally. So what can we do?
Oysters are disappearing from coastlines around the world because of overharvesting and disease, researchers said.
An estimated 85 percent of global wild oyster reefs and beds vanished in the past 20 to 130 years, according to a study led by Michael Beck, lead marine scientist at the University of California at Santa Cruz. His team examined oyster reefs in 144 bays across the world, historical records and national catch statistics in a study published in the February issue of the journal BioScience. The condition of oysters was rated as “poor” overall.
75 tons of blue shark laid out on the dock in the Japanese fishing port of Kesen-numa City, July 6th, 2010. The day before, 44 tons of blue shark, ten tons of salmon shark and three tons of short fin mako were seen here… this happens 6 days a week, all year long… Continue reading →
A Message from Erich Hoyt on Defending Antarctic Toothfish in the Ross Sea:
I am a whale researcher and conservationist, writes Erich Hoyt, Senior Research Fellow with the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society and MarineBio’s Director of Marine Mammals. Recently I became very interested in toothfish in Antarctica. At up to 2.5 m long they can be the size of a porpoise or dolphin. Left alone, they live for up to 50 years; they don’t breed until they’re about 16 and not every year thereafter. But aside from some remarkably similar reproductive parameters how is this relevant to my interest in whales and dolphins? Continue reading →
and worms(?)…. How appealing is that when you think of the ocean? Something that captivates most of us and draws millions of us to its shores and into its waters? It seems that people still aren’t taking overfishing seriously. My litmus test is the culinary industry. When I have time, which is never, I love to cook. Since I never have time, the next best thing is to watch my favorite cooking shows on TV – generally competitive shows like “Top Chef” or “Iron Chef.” These are shows where the best in the business compete with each other. Chefs, particularly “celebrity” chefs, are like the fashion designers of food. They’re the ones who establish what foods are fashionable in the culinary scene – and they always seem to be using red-listed fish. Tuna, Chilean seabass, grouper. It makes me cringe. Because people are inspired by what these chefs cook and the go to the markets to buy the ingredients that these chefs use. It’s frustrating as an armchair chef and conservationist when I know there are so many other products they could and should be using – they’re the ones who need to set an example!
I highly recommend reading this excellent article published in a newspaper in Australia. The article was inspired by a new documentary film about overfishing called The End of the Line. It’s time for chefs, and cooks in general, everywhere to respect the need to stop overfishing and set an example.
“WHERE have all the fish gone?” is the key question asked by new documentary film The End of the Line. And it doesn’t pull punches in detailing the ravages of global overfishing. Collapsed species, poor people going hungry, our seas emptied of all but mud and worms. Continue reading →
Compass supports sustainable seas with expanded list of fish to avoid
At a time when some companies have just de-listed blue fin tuna, the world‘s largest contract caterer, Compass Group, has made a significant decision to increase its ‘Fish to Avoid’ List in the UK and Ireland from 13 species to 69*.
These species will not be served in any Compass Group UK and Ireland restaurants, in any hospitality dishes or be used in any sandwiches or other grab-and-go offerings until the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) advises otherwise. This updated list takes immediate effect in all of Compass’ 6,500 sites including Oxford Brookes University, Lewisham Council’s schools, Chelsea FC, Procter & Gamble UK/Ireland and Bristol Zoo Gardens. Continue reading →
The Marine Section of the Society for Conservation Biology will be hosting its first stand-alone meeting, the International Marine Conservation Congress (IMCC), from 20-24 May 2009 at George Mason University near Washington D.C. This will be an interdisciplinary meeting that will engage natural and social scientists, managers, policy-makers, and the public. The goal of the IMCC is to put conservation science into practice through public and media outreach and the development of concrete products (e.g., policy briefs, blue ribbon position papers) that will be used to drive policy change and implementation. Continue reading →
Tonight I had dinner with a colleague who travels the globe to address serious disaster relief and international health issues. He’s fascinating to talk to and I always look forward to hearing about his most recent travels. Tonight he was telling me about a trip to Japan where he visited the famous Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo — the enormous market where they sell the prized bluefin tuna among a myriad of other species. He went there at 5am, which is the best time to see the day’s offerings before they’re quickly sold to restaurants. I imagine it was fascinating. He told me he had sushi there for breakfast and my mouth watered at the thought of the extraordinarily fresh fish he must have enjoyed. Then, feeling guilty, I thought about Toro. The prized belly of the tuna that sells for ridiculous prices. Why? Because its increasingly rare. Just a few days ago, WWF released a report that bluefin tuna stocks are collapsing under the heavy demand. Why are people still eating this when it’s been shown to have high levels of mercury? I urge sushi lovers to avoid this delicacy and any other sushi – or seafood – dishes that are not currently sustainable. There’s an organization called Sea Choice in Canada that has produced a sustainable sushi card to educate diners on the best choices for sushi. If you’re a sushi fan, print it and carry it in your wallet. Continue reading →
The United States Agency for International Development is jeopardizing the future of development for east Africa by distributing destructive fishing nets to African fishermen:
Kenya Wildlife Perishes in Nets Bought with US Aid
By Katharine Houreld
DIANI, Kenya (AP) – Plastic fishing nets — some bought for poor fishermen with American aid money — are tangling up whales and turtles off one of Africa’s most popular beaches.
One recent victim was a huge dappled whaleshark that bled to death after its tail was cut off by fishermen unwilling to slash their nets to save it. In another case, divers risked their lives to free a pregnant, thrashing humpback whale entangled in a net last summer. Continue reading →
The fishermen, or whomever discarded what looks like fishing gear, into the marine environment, which is now permanently strangling this helpless elephant seal. Thanks to Denise Kocek for sharing this photo with us.
This elephant seal is a resident of a colony in Morro Bay, California near San Luis Obispo. Denise spoke with park service and marine mammal rescue service officials who are not able to help seals when the colony is well-populated, particularly with alpha males and new mothers around that will fiercely guard their young.
Despite her horrific injury this seal recently gave birth to two seal pups, one of which survived. Denise is monitoring their progress and will keep us updated. Continue reading →
Just two weeks shy of his final day as President, George W. Bush announced today that 195,280 square miles will be designated as three new marine national monuments in the Pacific Ocean. Contrary to his resistance to sign the Kyoto Protocol and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and his other unpopular environmental policies, Bush is leaving a decent legacy when it comes to the ocean. This good news combined with the good news of a bill to ban shark finning in the US put forth in the new session of Congress (sea below) put a smile on my face!
From his press release:
On June 15, 2006, I established the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Marine National Monument, and on May 15, 2007, I instructed the U.S. delegation to the International Maritime Organization to submit a proposal for international measures to enhance protection of the Monument. On April 4, 2008, the International Maritime Organization adopted our proposal, and the Papahanaumokuakea Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA) was established. Continue reading →
Richard Ellis’ new book Tuna: A Love Story is now in bookstores. In his latest book, Ellis focuses on the bluefin tuna – an amazing species that is being loved to death in sushi bars worldwide.
We’re fans of Ellis’ The Empty Ocean, which paints a grim but accurate view of the exploitation of the ocean through centuries of fishing. The book is filled with historical data on overfishing and includes Ellis’ wonderful illustrations of marine life.
I’m hoping Tuna includes his drawings as well. I haven’t read it yet, but I plan to in the next few weeks and will provide a more in depth review. In the meantime: Continue reading →
Nibbling from trays of sushi containing realistic-looking tuna substitutes such as raw beef and watermelon, guests acknowledged a debt of gratitude to the delicious fish. Many insisted they hadn’t taken the privilege for granted. “The extinction of the bluefin must serve as a wake-up call for all of us,” stated film producer Devon Gillespie. “With so many delicious creatures in the sea, I believe we owe it to our children to enjoy as many of them as possible before they’re gone forever. I’ve already installed a second freezer at my house, just for abalone and Chilean sea bass!”
Bluefin tuna fish stocks have declined so much in the eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean seas that for the second year in a row, the European Union is closing the Bluefin tuna fishing season early. The season normally lasts until September, but as of June 16 Greece, France, Cyprus, Spain, Malta and Italy will be banned from bluefin tuna fishing. Continue reading →
We are entering a new era of ocean conservation. As Ocean Champions had hoped, the new 110th Congress is already off to a great start for protecting our oceans.
Representative Sam Farr (D-CA) one of our Ocean Champions in Congress, introduced the OCEANS-21 bill (HR-21) earlier this month, setting the stage for the establishment of a comprehensive national oceans policy with guiding principles for use and management of U.S. coasts, oceans and lakes. Ocean Champions, we have been working with members of Congress to adopt key recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy and the Pew Oceans Commission. The OCEANS-21 bill would make many of these recommendations into law. The bill adopts the key recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy and the Pew Oceans Commision to develop a holistic ocean health plan. This bill, unlike past ocean legislation, treats the disease, not the symptom.
OCEANS-21, if passed into law, would implement a comprehensive ecosystem-based management plan that addresses current and future ocean and coastal challlenges, such as overfishing, pollution and habitat destruction.
This is indeed a very exciting time for those who care about protecting our oceans because we are now seeing the positive results of our electoral victories from last November’s elections. The OCEANS-21 bill and the principles it carries are vital to the future of our oceans because it mandates that the government adopt a holistic ocean health plan, something that is long overdue. In the past, Congress has passed laws that addressed one or a few important ocean issues, but nothing this comprehensive.
Though I don’t read MSN’s news page very often, a co-worker brought this article to my attention this morning. Though nothing in the article surprises me, I still found it disturbing to read. Though science keeps telling us over and over that the world’s ocean is in real trouble, it’s not an issue that seems to be receiving much attention or action.
In my opinion, the billions being spent on a senseless war in Iraq is an abominable misappropriation of funds that should be spent on issues like this, which will ultimately create far more chaos than terrorism ever did.
Seafood could collapse by 2050, experts warn Overfishing, pollution, warming are destroying stocks, study finds
MSNBC staff and news service reports
WASHINGTON – Clambakes, crabcakes, swordfish steaks and even humble fish sticks could be little more than a fond memory in a few decades. Continue reading →