US Congress working to protect the ocean?

OCEANS 21: Coming To Rescue An Ailing OceanA call to action from the Ocean Champions website:

OCEANS 21: Coming To Rescue An Ailing Ocean

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.

Please ask your member of Congress to co-sponsor this vital legislation and help us build a better future for our oceans.

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.

Seafood could collapse by 2050

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

Sustainable seafood solutions in Europe?

Despite WWF’s claim that in 2002 its Stop Overfishing Campaign was successful in “helping to put environmental concerns and long-term resource sustainability at the heart of the EU’s fisheries policy,” the organization is still pointing fingers at the EU’s ongoing problems with unsustainable fishing practices:

GENEVA (Reuters) – Commercial fishing methods threaten to devastate Europe’s oceans, WWF International said on Wednesday [September 27, 2006].

The Swiss-headquartered environmental group, formerly known as the World Wildlife Fund, noted that up to 80 percent of some North Sea plaice catches are thrown overboard dead or dying due to their small size. Continue reading