Thursday, March 22, 2012

When the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded and caused the biggest oil spill in U.S. history, many on the Gulf Coast were deeply concerned that the local seafood industry would be devastate for years to come. Fortunately, the extent of the damage was not as bad as initially feared and revenues for local fisherman were able to bounce back in a much shorter timeframe.
Other areas have faced threats from less catastrophic causes. In Maine, for instance, lobstermen started to fear that the crustaceans on which generations of their families’ livelihoods had been based may become endangered. Bluefin tuna, too, started to become increasingly scarce. As I wrote about a few years ago, however, while the lobster industry took action to ensure the species would remain populous enough to keep fishing for decades to come, the prospects for the bluefin remain bleak.
For these individual areas and the fisherman who rely on these species, the impact of the ocean’s health has presented a very real threat to their careers. And increasingly, it seems that the sectors of the economy that depend on the seas remain vulnerable.
Click on the link below to see an infographic from the Global Partnership for Oceans that shows the degree to which the economy and society rely on the ocean.

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