Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. Edward Abbey

24 January 2007

Tuna salad anyone?

A WWF meeting in Japan is trying to save the tuna from extinction.
  • Bluefin tuna is critically depleted
  • Atlantic bluefin, used for high-end sushi and sashimi, is massively overfished
  • The spawning stock of Southern bluefin in the Indian Ocean is down about 90 percent
Reuters reports that Japan was rocked in November 2006 by news that global quotas for Atlantic bluefin tuna will be cut by nearly 8 percent next year. Japan's quota for southern bluefin was halved the month before for the next five years as punishment for years of overfishing.

Experts say substantial catch reductions are needed for big-eyed and yellowfin tuna, both relatively inexpensive species that regularly appear on Japanese supermarket shelves, and whose price would rise considerably were catch limits imposed.

For me, the greatest tragedy regarding the tuna, is the conviction among human animals, that we can continue to "manage tuna stocks". We have driven this species to the brink and yet we still feel we have the right to "manage" their future.

Quotas, punishment for overfishing and stamping out illegal fishing are not going to save the tuna. The only way we can save tuna, salmon, dugongs, blue whales and polar bears is to live in harmony with nature. NOT at the expense of nature. We need to get out of our cars and walk. We need to eat less, waste less, buy less, share more, consume less, reuse more.

We need to purge ourselves from the misconception that we have to "grow the economy". We don't! And we cannot continue to grow the economy forever, because we live on a planet of limited resources. This means the economy too has a limited lifespan. The sooner the planetary economy crashes, the better it will be for the tuna, salmon, dugongs, blue whales and polar bears.

And believe it or not. The better it will be for us too. Human and non-human people will all benefit from the end of the economy, the end of development, the end of "progress".

Enjoy your tuna salad and sushi while you can, because it's not going to be available for much longer. Our greed is wiping out yet another incredible non-human animal. When will we stop?

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