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I long ago stopped believing that most corporations and politicians had the good of the public in mind. We need independent groups like Food & Water Watch to raise awareness and advocate for ethical, environmentally positive laws.
Published on March 15, 2013 - Fact Sheets: Catch limits are protective caps on the number of fish that can be caught in a fishing year. They are a fundamental measure to prevent overfishing and ensure the long-term sustainability of fish stocks. These measures are set based on scientific assessments of the health of fish stocks.
Published on July 27, 2012 - Fact Sheets: The United States and the European Union are moving toward privatizing their fisheries management systems through catch shares, while Iceland, with one of the world’s oldest and most comprehensive catch share programs, is struggling to find a way to dismantle its program. Why? The answer is that catch shares have failed Iceland’s fisheries and the nation as a whole.
Published on June 27, 2012 - Fact Sheets: All too often when an economist or banker looks out at an expanse of virgin forest or free-flowing river, she doesn’t see nature — she sees “natural capital.” This concept promotes the view that our natural resources should be attached a value and managed using market-based principles of supply and demand. It is the cornerstone of the “green economy” that many free-market proponents and market-oriented environmentalists assert will provide environmental sustainability.
Published on September 30, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Offshore aquaculture is factory fish farming of the sea, growing fish in huge, often over-crowded cages out in ocean waters. It can be problematic for both the environment and the economy. The waste – fecal matter, uneaten food, and any chemicals or drugs used in the operation – flows directly into the ocean, and the result could be long-term damage to the seafloor. Despite its negative impacts, the following groups push for, or would profit from, factory fish farming in the United States and Europe.
Published on August 11, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Catch shares are a system for managing our nation’s fisheries that are causing consolidation in the fishing industry at the expense of the livelihoods of thousands of smaller-scale, traditional fishermen and their communities. Such programs are being heavily touted as a means to promote sustainable fishing, but a closer look reveals they do not have a positive environmental record. Catch shares can incentivize the use of larger-scale boats, more damaging gear and wasteful fishing practices that hurt fish populations and the habitats on which they depend.
Published on July 26, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Offshore aquaculture is factory fish farming of the sea, growing fish in huge, often over-crowded cages out in open ocean waters. It can be problematic for both the environment and the economy. The waste – fecal matter, uneaten food, and any chemicals or drugs used in the operation – flows directly into the ocean, and the result could be long-term damage to the seafloor. Despite its negative impacts, the following groups push for, or would profit from, factory fish farming in the federal waters of the United States.
Published on July 20, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Ocean factory fish farming, also known as open ocean aquaculture, involves growing marine fish in cages and net pens in the ocean. These facilities threaten coastal and fishing communities, consumers, and the health of our oceans. A new piece of legislation would put the brakes on efforts by government agencies to expand this unsustainable industry into federal waters, generally located three to 200 miles offshore.
Published on June 15, 2011 - Fact Sheets: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is poised to approve genetically engineered (GE) salmon as the first “transgenic” animal allowed into the U.S. food supply. AquaBounty Technologies, Inc. says its GE salmon, which is designed to grow twice as fast an unaltered fish, is safe, healthy and poses little threat to the environment, but there are many reasons to doubt these claims.
Published on June 09, 2011 - Fact Sheets: In many communities people are growing more and more aware that their food choices affect not just our own health, but also our society and planet. Whether it is local farmers’ markets springing up across the country or grocery stores dedicating aisles to organic foods, it’s clear that consumers are taking a more critical view of how their food is produced. But when it comes to seafood, murky messages abound about what we are eating.
Published on May 31, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Bluefin tuna is a top-level predator of the seas that has been part of the human diet for centuries. Thousands of years ago this fish was so revered throughout the Mediterranean that it was painted on cave walls and minted onto coins. These massive creatures can grow to be 12 feet (about 3.5 meters) long and up to 1,500 pounds (680 kg). But today, several bluefin tuna populations are teetering on the brink of collapse and suffering from unsustainable industrial fishing practices. Ineffective international management has exacerbated their dire situation. What must be done to address the bluefin tuna crisis?
Published on April 18, 2011 - Fact Sheets: When an earthquake and subsequent tsunami devastated Japan’s northeastern coast on March 11, 2011, a nuclear crisis began unfolding at the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s (TEPCO) Fukushima Daiichi plant. The Japanese government estimates it could be several months before the cooling systems, damaged by the natural disasters, are fully functional. In an effort to thwart a nuclear meltdown at the plant while the cooling system is damaged, hundreds of tons of water has been sprayed into four of the six reactors to cool fuel rods and spent fuel. The radioactive water is pooling in various locations around the plant, inhibiting work to bring the damaged cooling systems back into operation.
Published on February 25, 2011 - Fact Sheets: Ocean aquaculture — the mass production of fish in large, floating net pens or cages in the sea — has often led to environmental and other disasters in the countries where it has been practiced commercially. Expanding this dirty, costly industry in waters off the United States could harm consumers, fishermen and the marine environment.
Published on February 09, 2011 - Fact Sheets: The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) was established in 19961 as an eco- labeling and certification program with the purpose of letting consumers know which fisheries are considered "sustainable" based on a set of criteria. It was co-founded by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), an international conservation organization, and Unilever, a multinational corporation that was once one of the largest seafood manufacturers in the world.
Published on December 10, 2010 - Fact Sheets: Choosing the best fish to eat can be complicated. In many cases, the more you know, the more questions arise: Is this wild or farmed? Local or imported? Produced in an environmentally responsible way? High in mercury? Tainted with antibiotics and chemicals? In light of these questions, there is a demand for straightforward guidance on seafood. To address the sustainability questions surrounding fish, a number of certification programs have developed sets of standards and labels to evaluate and then market “environmentally friendly” or “sustainably produced” fish. But what do these labels really mean? We examined various seafood certification programs and unfortunately, these labels do not always represent what you might expect.
Published on November 14, 2010 - Fact Sheets: California’s Pacific salmon, once abundant, are in grave danger.
Published on September 08, 2010 - Fact Sheets: Do you know about the risks of farmed salmon? Learn more about human health implications, their effect on the marine ecosystem and your choices!
Published on September 08, 2010 - Fact Sheets: More than half of our global seafood supply comes from aquaculture, also known as fish farming. This practice requires large amounts of manufactured fish food to feed the captive fish. Fish food is often made with small wild fish that have been ground into a fishmeal or pressed into oil. Normally, fish farms produce fewer fish than the farm consumes (to feed the fish). The industry has faced intense criticism for inefficient use of small wild fish that are an important food source for larger fish, marine mammals and birds in the wild, and are often the primary protein in diets of smaller and lower income coastal communities worldwide. Because of this, and because fishmeal and oil have become increasingly costly, the industry is exploring alternative feed ingredients.
Published on July 16, 2010 - Fact Sheets: The massive oil spill resulting from the blowout of BP’s Deepwater Horizon has been devastating not only to the marine, coastal and wetland habitats of the Gulf of Mexico, but also to one of the United States’ most productive fishing communities. As of July 2010, just over a third of federal waters in the Gulf have been closed to fishing, more than half of Louisiana state waters are closed, and access to shrimping areas is extremely limited. With decreasing amounts of seafood coming from the Gulf for an indefinite period of time, this disaster could have a large impact on the U.S. seafood supply.
Published on June 30, 2010 - Fact Sheets: On May 20, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released data collected by BP on dispersant toxicity. That same day, the agency directed BP to find a less toxic and more effective dispersant to use. On May 29, the agency released BP’s response, which was submitted on the evening of May 27. In that document, which contains incomplete and redacted information, BP asserts that COREXIT EC9500A remains the best alternative. As the debate between the EPA and BP continues, an increasingly vocal group of scientists and politicians wonders why BP continues to apply the dispersants to the oil spill.
Published on June 30, 2010 - Fact Sheets: You want to know what’s in your food, and this is especially true when it comes to fresh seafood. Unfortunately, the fish fillet you see in the store may have been treated with a chemical called sodium tripolyphosphate. This much-debated additive can make expired products appear firmer and glossier, and could dupe you into buying old or spoiled fish that could make you sick. Worse yet, exposure to the chemical itself could also be harmful for your health.