By Robert A. Vella
The Associated Press is reporting that the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Department of Commerce) will likely shutdown commercial sardine fishing on the U.S west coast this year due to declining numbers and its impact on other species. Thousands of sea lions and sea birds have died recently and washed up along miles of pacific coast beaches. Starvation is thought to be the primary cause of these mass deaths, and pelicans have been particularly hard hit since 2010.
In addition to the economic losses suffered by the fishing industry and to the region, the decline of such an important food species as sardines should convey serious warning about the escalating degradation of ocean ecosystems upon which most life depends – including humans. The combination of climate-induced ocean acidification and warming, industrial water pollution, and overfishing are intensifying stresses on marine life beyond its capacity to adapt. This…
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