Friday, April 12, 2013
Saving Seafood Offers Red Herring for Groundfish
In favor of opening protected areas in New England, Saving Seafood has offered red herring.
Earlier this year, fisheries managers in New England proposed to open long-protected areas to groundfishing.
In an Ocean Views post, Carl Safina, co-founder of the Blue Ocean Institute, and marine scientist Elizabeth Brown said that opening the protected areas will “undo decades of progress.”
They noted that “removing these protections could mean the depletion of the last known abundant groundfish areas in the Northeast.”
In response on their web site, Saving Seafood did not address the negative impact on adult groundfish and marine mammals but instead asserted that rotational closures work better. Only no one is proposing rotational closures; they’re not even on the table. It's easy to wonder why Saving Seafood is talking about rotational closures.
Maybe it's an argumentative red herring, a distraction from an untenable position that favors opening areas that have been closed for years to the benefit of healthy fish populations.
In Saving Seafood’s "analysis" of Pew's The Bottom Line: Changing Course for America's Oldest Fishery, another head fake is offered.
They said that closed areas do not work and that is why they are being looked at. "The existing closure boundaries are ultimately up for modification because they are not very useful for habitat protection," according to their site.
This overlooks the stated and affirmed motivation to open the closed areas -- to get at more fish and make up for heavily depleted open areas.
Saving Seafood seems to want to argue anything as long as it diverts genuine scrutiny of the very bad idea to open up long-protected areas to fishing.
Posted by Mike Misner at 12:31 PM