Humanosity says…There are many issues in the world that demand our attention and as a result there are many stories that we miss that are important. Our goal at humanosity is to find these stories and provide you with the information you need to understand what’s going on.
One such story is related to the state of our oceans. Recent attention has focused on the problem of plastic pollution but there is another man made disaster happening across all oceans and that is over-fishing.
Our editorial team has scoured the web to bring you the best articles, videos and reports on this subject.
Starting this special report is a short film that clearly demonstrates the scale of the problem globally. Scroll down the page for a selection of articles, videos and podcasts on the impact on West Africa, a region of the world that used to have some of the world’s best fish stocks and where fish is the main source of protein for the majority of the population.
The Global Scale of Over-Fishing
Click on the video above to see a short video by Haley B that shows the scale of the problem that fisheries across the world face.
Chinese Fishmeal Plants Leave Fishermen in the Gambia all at Sea.
This article is from the Guardian Newspaper in the UK’s excellent series Seascape: the state of our oceans . Written by Hannah Summers it graphically demonstrates the impact of foreign owned fishing companies on coastal communities in the popular tourist destination, The Gambia. The waters off West Africa have some of the richest fishing anywhere in the world but poverty, mismanagement and international players is decimating the fish stocks.
Before the arrival of fishmeal factories in the Gambia, Musa Duboe would catch red snapper and barracuda to be sold at the local market. But his income had begun to dwindle due to depleted stocks.
Then in 2016 the Chinese-owned fishmeal plant Golden Lead began operating out of the coastal town of Gunjur, increasing demand for fish to export for overseas aquaculture.
Is China’s Fishing Fleet Taking all of West Africa’s Fish?
Humanosity says….BBC correspondent Paul Adams and producer Charlotte Pamment travel to Sierra Leone to investigate how the international trawlers are decimating local fish stocks. The film shows how difficult it is for a poor country like Sierra Leone to try and stay on top of the issue, especially considering that the country is trying to recover from a brutal civil war and the devastating Ebola outbreak.
West Africa’s Fish Famine
In this podcast by the BBC’s World Service’s Assignment strand, Alfonso Daniels travels to Senegal and Mauritania to see hardship caused by demand for the humble Sardinella.
For communities along the West African coast fish is the main source of protein. However what this podcast shows is that the demand for fish meal for fish farming is posing an additional threat to these communities. it also shows how the collapse in local fisheries is causing tension between countries
Climate Change Is Suffocating Large Parts of the Ocean
Much of the damage that is being done to fisheries is largely down to unsustainable demand. However there is a greater challenge coming that will affect all our lives – climate change. This article in National Geographic reports on a new study that says warming has reduced the oxygen levels in large swaths of the deep ocean, threatening marine life around the world.
The author of the report noticed something odd. Blue Marlin would dive to depths of half a mile to chase prey whereas the same species would stay near the surface off the coasts of Costa Rica and Guatemala.
The billfish, it turns out, were trying to avoid suffocation. The marlin near Guatemala and Costa Rica wouldn’t plunge into the murky depths because they were avoiding a deep, gigantic and expanding swath of water that contained too little oxygen. The discovery was among the first examples of the many ways sea life is already shifting in response to a new reality that hasn’t gotten much attention: Marine waters, even far out in the high seas, are losing oxygen thanks to climate change, upending where and how sea creatures live.
State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture (SOFIA) 2018
The Food and Agriculture Organisation produces the most definitive report on the state of the World’s fisheries. The scope of the report is comprehensive and it also contains figures on the growing aquaculture industry or fish farming which was once thought of as a more sustainable option. If you’re looking for the best statistics then this is for you.