Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Drill Baby Drill Punctures Alaska's Seafood Market

Red areas are most intensely impacted. 

Ocean acidification from climate change could take five billion dollars in seafood away from Alaska annually.

The ocean absorbs carbon naturally but there's so much carbon pollution in the air that it's changing ocean chemistry. This makes the ocean more acidic, which is bad, very bad, for most creatures in the sea including the ones we love to eat like salmon, haddock, clams, and crabs.

Dismal as this is, this research is a welcome red flag because many people don't start to care until they see how much money is at stake. The frightening economics around ocean acidification might inspire action.

"The fishing industry in Alaska supports over 100,000 jobs, and generates more than $5 billion in annual revenue. Beyond commercial fishing, around 120,000 Alaskans, roughly 17 percent of the state's population, rely on subsistence fishing to feed their families, according to the report.

The analysis found that communities most reliant on fishery harvests, with relatively lower income and fewer alternative job options, face the highest risk of ocean acidification," according to scientists in Newsweek.

What to do? Support clean energy and phase out fossil fuels. Alaska itself will have to re-think its "drill baby drill" mentality, or continue to shoot itself in the proverbial foot.

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