The strange-looking deep sea creature known as the Blobfish (Genus Psychrolutes).
Karen Sack, our Oceans Policy Advisor, said after an all-night
wait atthe UN: "The final agreement has more loopholes in it than
afisherman's sweater, and it does nothing to significantly change
theway our oceans are managed." That's exceptionally bad
newsconsidering that a recent scientific evaulation has shown that
ifnothing changes, most
commercial fisheries will have collapsed by 2048.
Don't blame Canada, blame Iceland
Thanksto Ocean Defenders, scientists, journalists and South Park
fans allover the globe, as well as enthusiastic "squid" and "orange
roughy"handing out leaflets to New York taxi drivers, even Canada
and Spainsupported strong action at the UN in the end. In the last
twoweeks alone, Canada and Spain have received 71,266 emails from
OceanDefenders! Other supporters included Australia, New Zealand,
thePacific Island States, the USA, Brazil, India, South Africa,
Chile,Germany and the EU. However, their drive to win consensus at
allcosts has resulted in a weakly worded, useless piece of paper
that willallow for the unregulated plunder of the high seas.
Maybe Iceland should have listened to one of itsown fishermen,
thanks to him we have underwater video of a bottom trawling. Watch
his reactionwhen he sees what bottom trawling is doing to
"The international community should be outraged that
Icelandcould almost singlehandedly sink deep-sea protection and the
foodsecurity of future generations. Iceland should be embarrassed
as shouldall those states that did not stand up to them and fight
for the futureof the oceans," Karen adds.
Arrogance and ignorance
Icelandand its fishing cronies, opposed to the UN moratorium on
high-seasbottom trawling, should realize that for the sake of their
own futureindustries, this cannot continue. The oceans are not a
bottomlessresource- as recent scientific reports have confirmed
(not that Icelandapparently pays much attention to scientists,
having just ignored 1500of them). Economically speaking, the high-seas
bottom trawl fleet would operate at a losswithout the
substantial subsidies it receives. Of course apartfrom just
commerical interests, the as-yet undiscovered ecosystems ofthe deep
sea are at stake.
Iceland showed even more arrogance inasking why Canada and Spain
had got all the negative press, accordingto UN sources. Perhaps
because so far they have constantlyinsisted that they are
supportive of well-managed fisheries. Today they showed their true
All is not lost
Allof the countries that committed to supporting a moratorium
now have theopportunity to protect vulnerable habitats from
destructive fishing bytightening market access to bottom-trawled
fish. These countriescan also support the establishment of a
global network of marine reservesacross the world's oceans, and
make sure that their nations are notinvolved in high seas bottom
trawl fishing. They can alsoimplement strong measures regionally
to protect the deep-seas.
Our guide to which fish are bottom-trawled can be found here. Avoid at all costs, and if you’re not sure, ask your retailers. We suggest also buying fish only from sustainable, well-managed fisheries and from countries that support such initiatives.
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