The Man at Work Collection--Studies in Sustainability

Installment Ten:  “Our Marine Fisheries— Strategies for Stopping Their Decline and Promoting Recovery”

By Deborah L Jackman, PhD, PE, LEED AP™

Image Fisherman Hauling in their Nets at Sea.jpg

Fishermen Hauling in their Nets at Sea, ca 1890,

  by Georges-Jean-Marie Haquette, oil on canvas


          The inspiration for this essay came from a trip to the grocery store.   I am a compulsive food label reader--always scanning labels for ingredients and the origins of items I purchase.  I try to buy locally (or at least regionally) whenever possible, and I also try to purchase items that are produced as sustainably as possible. If given the choice between several similar products with different places of origin, I will generally choose the product from the region that has in place the best environmental safeguards.  I was shopping for frozen fish for dinner one evening and noticed that all of the fish available in the freezer section of that particular supermarket were labelled a “Product of China”.  Even the shrimp (which are abundant in our own U.S. Gulf Coast region) were unavailable except as a “Product of Thailand”.   I have nothing inherently against either China or Thailand, but truth be told, neither nation has a particularly good environmental track record.  This incident really got me thinking about how the seafood we consume is harvested and how we can help ensure this is done responsibly and sustainably.

          The fishermen in our subject painting, Fishermen Hauling in their Nets at Sea, didn’t have to worry about the impact their fishing operations were having on the ecosystems of the oceans.  Art historians have noted that the fishermen depicted in the painting are using an old-style trawl net to capture fish such as sardines, mackerel, and blue whiting off the coast of France. In the 19th century, the world’s human population was much smaller, thereby placing much less pressure on fish populations as food sources. Furthermore, many of the pollutants and factory ship fishing methods which jeopardize both fish populations and the larger ocean ecosystem today were not a factor back then.  The type of trawl net being used by the men in the painting is dwarfed by modern day trawl nets which are much larger, extend much further out from the boat and which can haul in tons of fish at a time because they are operated by mechanized winches rather than hauled in using human strength alone.

          With the earth’s human population currently estimated at more than 7 billion people, sources of protein in the human diet are increasingly at a premium. Production of land-based protein sources such as livestock and terrestrial plant-based sources such as seeds, nuts, and legumes are limited by their own set of environmental and economic constraints.  Throughout human history, the oceans have appeared to be an inexhaustible resource for mankind. However, in the last century humans have exploited the oceans at increasing rates, and we have reached a point that would have been unimaginable to our forebears—a point where we are exploiting ocean resources at a rate that exceeds the oceans’ ability to regenerate themselves.  In short, our utilization of ocean resources, and specifically its fisheries, has become unsustainable.  This essay will examine the factors which contribute to the decline of our oceans’ fisheries and will suggest ways we might reverse this decline.      

      Causes of the Current Decline in Fishstocks:

          There is no single reason for the current decline of ocean ecosystems and our fisheries.  The oceans are an extremely complex ecosystem and not all the dynamics governing them are fully understood, even today. However, most experts agree that three main forces are likely to blame for the fisheries’ decline:

  • Overfishing
  • Global warming/global climate change
  • General degradation of ocean ecosystems due to pollution


          Overfishing occurs when fish are harvested in numbers too great to allow breeding stocks to replenish themselves.  In 2006, the Global International Waters Assessment (GIWA) taskforce, which was commissioned by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), published a comprehensive report on the status of the world’s aquatic ecosystems, entitled “Challenges to International Waters:  Regional Assessments in a Global Perspective” [1]. One of the major conclusions from the report was that 52% of the world’s fish stocks were being fished at capacity (meaning any additional pressures on them would cause them to become over exploited and unsustainable), 16% were over exploited, and 7% were depleted.  Hence, only 25% of the world’s fish stocks were deemed to be at healthy levels. Since the report was released in 2006 (nearly a decade ago) pressures on fisheries have grown even greater.  It is likely that the current statistics are worse than those published in the 2006 GIWA report. 

          It is generally agreed that the main causes of overfishing include 1) over-exploitation, 2) excessive by-catch and discards; and 3) destructive fishing practices.
          Over-exploitation is caused by over harvesting of commercial species by industrial fishing fleets.  Industrial fishing ships use large mechanized trawl nets and can harvest tons of fish each day.  Many also house on-board fish processing and freezer facilities so that fish harvests can be immediately preserved for market.  Such on-board processing facilities tend to encourage over-harvesting because fishing industry personnel know that everything they catch will be marketable and that there will be no waste due to product spoilage.

          Many countries’ commercial fishing fleets knowingly violate agreed upon bag limits, harvesting far more fish than what has been determined to be sustainable. Recently, the scientific journal Nature [2] reported that commercial Chinese fishing fleets operating in waters off the coast of West Africa had taken 2.9 million tons of fish from those waters during 2011.  This severely impacted the remaining fish stocks available to local West African peoples, who rely on fishing to provide themselves with a subsistence diet. Worldwide, Chinese commercial fishing operations harvested 4.6 million tons of fish in 2011, which was 12 times what they reported to the United Nations.   The discrepancy was uncovered by researchers who compared what the Chinese reported having caught against commercial sales figures of fish sold under a “Product of China” label of origin. (Any fish which were the product of Chinese aquaculture as opposed to wild-caught were discounted from the calculations. So, the reported numbers reflect only wild-caught fish.)   While the Chinese are not the only commercial fleet to violate bag limits, theirs has been the subject of some of the most egregious violations in recent years.

          Excessive by-catch and discards also contribute to commercial overfishing and to damage of the ocean ecosystem.  When certain types of nets and fishing practices are employed, many species of non-commercial fish, reptiles such as sea turtles, and marine mammals can be incidentally captured along with the targeted species.  These species are either left to die in the nets, or if returned to the ocean, often die anyway due to trauma.  While not commercially desirable, many of the by-catch fish are part of the food chain and provide food to commercial species of fish.  If stocks of non-commercial fish are depleted through by-catch, populations of commercially desirable fish are also negatively impacted.  

          Destructive fishing practices include bottom trawling (which when employed in coastal areas can destroy delicate coral reefs), blast fishing (which uses explosives like dynamite to set off underwater explosions that kill or stun fish and brings them to the surface for collection by fishermen), and poisoning (the use of chemicals like cyanide and chlorine bleach) to kill fish, which then float to the surface and are subsequently collected.  Blast fishing and poisoning not only contribute to reef destruction (from which it is estimated a coral reef can require up to a century to recover) but can also jeopardize human health.  There are reported instances of people becoming sickened by consuming fish harvested by poisoning methods.  Blast fishing and poisoning are not generally used by large commercial fishers, but by subsistence fishers who live near the coast and rely on fishing for their livelihoods.  Nonetheless, the ecological damage done by these practices is severe because it impacts delicate coastal areas that are already being threatened by agricultural chemical run-off, untreated human sewage, oil spills, and soil erosion from the land.  Blast fishing and poisoning are currently the most prevalent in Southeast Asia and off the coast of East Africa, near Somalia [1].   

          Scientists also believe that certain important commercial fish populations and marine ecosystems are in decline due to global climate change.  This decline will likely continue to increase as atmospheric CO2 levels continue to rise.  Rising CO2 levels not only cause an increase in ocean temperatures, but a decrease in salinity (as ice caps containing fresh water melt and dilute salt concentrations) and an increase in acidity (since higher dissolved CO2 levels in the water lower pH).  Two examples of how this impact may play-out are discussed below. However, the projected damage to global fisheries is not limited to these examples but threatens to be much more wide-spread and pervasive.

          One of the best examples of damage to a marine ecosystem resulting from increased atmospheric carbon dioxide levels is that of the decline and death of coral reefs in many places on earth [3].   While localized pollution has contributed to their decline, the more generalized culprits are bacterial infections and increased ocean acidity.  An increase in water acidity slows the formation of the calcium carbonate skeleton of the coral and in extreme cases can even cause it to soften or dissolve. The coral is therefore less able to recover from the normal wear-and-tear it experiences due to ocean currents, tide forces, and storms. And, as increased CO2 levels cause ocean temperatures to rise, the warmer waters promote more rapid bacterial growth, and bacterial infections in coral become more frequent and severe.  Since many species of fish and shellfish of commercial interest depend on the health of coral reefs, the decline of these reefs (which is an environmental tragedy in its own right) also can impact the health of that fishery.

          An example of an important commercial fish species that will likely be impacted as global climate change progresses is that of Atlantic Cod [4],[5].  Cod has been an important commercial fish for millennia.  The maritime cultures of the North Atlantic region including those in Norway, Newfoundland, and New England were historically based on cod.  And cod was traditionally abundant.  However, due to severe over fishing in the last half century, cod populations plummeted.  After stringent bag limits and outright bans in some fisheries were instituted starting in the 1990s, the cod population has slowly begun to recover.  However, now it faces an uncertain future not because of overfishing, but because of global climate change.   Cod is a cold water fish and it needs cold water in which to breed. Cod is also a carnivore which feeds on other fish.  As ocean temperatures in the traditional cod fisheries of the North Atlantic begin to rise, cod will migrate further north, into the colder waters of the arctic.  Preliminary attempts at computer modelling designed to project cod populations in the presence of global climate change suggest that in the short term this migration will increase cod stocks in far northern waters.  But, as populations in the north grow, stocks of other species of arctic fish will become depleted by the voracious cod.  In the extreme, the cod become cannibalistic, feeding off of their own young if sufficient feedstock of other species are not present.  Then populations will plummet.  In the process, species of fish indigenous to the arctic will be driven to extinction.  Since ocean salinity levels will drop at the same time water temperatures rise, the viability of cod eggs and young hatchlings is also uncertain.  They may not be able to survive outside of a relatively narrow range of salinity.  So, at this point, the ultimate fate of the cod is unknown.  Under the best of circumstances, cod populations will reach some new steady state level, but at much higher latitudes than before.  They will become scarce in their traditional fisheries of the North Atlantic.

          In addition to overfishing and climate change, the general decline of ocean ecosystems due to pollution also negatively impacts fish populations.   Pollution takes many forms:  dumping of untreated sewage into oceans, chemical and agricultural run-off from land-based activities, unauthorized dumping of garbage at sea, oil spills, etc.  A comprehensive discussion of ocean pollution is beyond the scope of this article. However, two general points can be made: 1) increased ocean pollution follows from increased human population and human activity, and 2) ocean pollution can be controlled if human beings enact and follow basic environmental protocols and pollution prevention strategies.   


Why Fish Farming is Not the Definitive Solution:

          A substantial amount of the fish we consume today is no longer wild-caught, but produced via aquaculture, (i.e. on so-called “fish farms”).  And, levels of aquacultural production are projected to grow at a rapid pace into the future.  At first blush, this approach may seem to be a solution to overfishing, but, in fact, fish farming carries its own set of negative environmental impacts.

          Emerson [6] provides an excellent overview of the negative environmental and social impacts of aquaculture.   These include:

  • Pollution of inland and coastal waters—Most water pollution from aquaculture is the result of fish feed.  Direct pollution results from overfeeding fish.  Uneaten food adds to the biological oxygen demand (BOD) in the water and can result in eutrophication of those waters.  Oxygen is needed to breakdown the uneaten feed into the fundamental byproducts of organic decay—carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and water.  When large amounts of organic matter, such as fish food, enter the ecosystem, the oxygen needed to facilitate organic breakdown comes from the water, thereby reducing dissolved oxygen levels in the water. This can result in fish kills and the promotion of excessive algae growth.  Pollution is also caused when the fish eat the food and then produce waste products that are introduced into the water system.  Via this mechanism, high levels of nitrogen based compounds and bacteria can be introduced.  Overfeeding the fish exacerbates this because the fish will consume more food than can be digested, with undigested and partially digested food passing through them into the ecosystem. Practices that can mitigate the negative environmental impacts of fish feeding include 1) not overfeeding fish; 2) careful site selection for coastal fish farms, choosing areas that have strong currents and good water circulation, in order to more quickly flush out byproducts; 3) biological and/or physical pretreatment of effluent waters before discharge to the larger body of water, to remove excess pollutants (where practical); and 4) polyculture—a practice where several species of fish are raised together, consisting of at least one species of “bottom feeder”, which can consume excess fish food that falls to the bottom.  Common species that form polyculture systems are scaly finned fish in combination with oysters or mussels.


  • Using natural fish stocks to feed farmed fish— Farmed fish, like all animals, must eat in order to survive and grow.   For carnivorous fish, such as farm-raised salmon, diets must consist of large amounts of animal-based feed.  One commonly used source of such feed is to catch wild fish species that have little or no market value themselves—so-called “garbage fish”. These fish are fed to the farmed fish. The problem with this method is that many of the “garbage fish” may not be palatable to humans, but they form an important link in the natural food chain.  Depletion of these non-marketable species can negatively impact wild populations of commercially important species, causing their decline. Potential solutions to this problem include raising and creatively marketing more herbivorous species of fish, as opposed to carnivorous ones, and to begin to feed carnivorous fish feed manufactured from land-based meat and dairy by-products. 


  • Introduction of alien or modified species to wild ecosystems which can threaten biodiversity— Some farmed fish species have been improved through selective breeding such that they grow larger more quickly and also exhibit other traits not common in their wild relatives.  When such individuals are released (intentionally or by accident) into the wild ecosystem, their genetic material can dominate that of the wild variety, since they may grow and reproduce at an accelerated pace. Genetic material present in the wild individuals that could be critical in future species survival is potentially lost. This scenario becomes even more problematic when genetically engineered fish (who contain genes from other species) are farmed.  Then it is not just preferential selection of certain genes from within the natural genome of the species that occurs, but potentially the introduction of totally foreign genetic material into the natural fish population, should such GMO organisms escape into the wild.  (Such a scenario is not unlikely in the future given that as of March, 2014, the US Food and Drug Administration was in the final stage of approving for sale to consumers the AquAdvantage® salmon.  This genetically modified Atlantic salmon contains genes from both the unrelated Chinook salmon and an eel, allowing it to grow twice as fast as its natural, non-GMO relative [7].) Another related scenario occurs when a species not native to a region (and which therefore cannot interbreed with wild relatives) is farmed.  When such individuals escape into the wild, they do not interbreed with the wild fish, but rather can displace the wild species.  An example of this occurred in the late 1990s in the Pacific Northwest, where farm-raised Atlantic Salmon escaped and negatively impacted the native Pacific Salmon population.


  • Coastal habitat destruction— When coastal areas are cleared of their natural vegetation in order allow development of aquaculture, loss of natural species (both aquatic and land-based) and loss of erosion control capability can result.   A prime example is the large scale loss of tropical mangrove forests in Southeast Asia, as these areas are converted into shrimp aquaculture production.  Shrimp need the brackish water in ecosystems like those found in coastal mangrove forests to grow and reproduce. Conversion of these areas into aquaculture production has been expeditious for the shrimp production industries of such nations a Thailand, China, and Indonesia.  However, it jeopardizes many native species found only in the mangrove ecosystem and may also result in massive erosion of coastal lands when the next large storm, typhoon, or tidal wave hits these areas.  Addressing this concern means limiting large scale aquaculture operations to less sensitive coastal areas and establishing coastal preserves to ensure that these delicate ecosystems survive.


  • Displacement of subsistence fisherman by large aquaculture corporations—Hundreds of millions of people world-wide rely on subsistence fishing to provide protein to their diets and to provide some money for basic purchases, through the sale of fish at local fish markets.  Most of these subsistence fishing activities use traditional methods which have little impact on the larger environment.  When large aquaculture interests move in to coastal areas, they displace the local subsistence fishermen, robbing them of their livelihoods.  Not only does this promote economic hardship, but from an environmental standpoint it also encourages these impoverished people to engage in highly damaging fishing practices such as the blast fishing discussed above, in a desperate attempt to make a living. 


          As with most industries, aquaculture is not inherently bad when it is conducted in a controlled and responsible manner.  In fact, the argument can be made that it is an industry that will be crucial to the future of humanity and to the conservation of natural fisheries, and that its development is to be encouraged. However, such development and growth must be done responsibly.  Just as land-based industries have had to comply with a number of environmental regulations in recent decades, so must the aquaculture industry, in order for it to be sustainable.  One factor that has tended to exacerbate its negative environmental impacts over the last two decades is that aquaculture is growing most rapidly in nations with few or no environmental regulations.  As the economies of these nations mature-- and due to pressures applied to them by international organizations like the UN and by end consumers seeking sustainably produced products—it is increasingly likely that they will begin to impose reasonable environmental restrictions on their aquaculture industries.
          A comprehensive discussion of aquaculture is beyond the scope of this essay.  But, the interested reader is encouraged to read the report by Hall,, [8], which provides an extensive discussion of the global status of aquaculture, along with detailed information on what is needed to ensure its long-term sustainability.


Actions to Help Ensure Sustainable Fisheries for Future Generations:

              The ocean’s ecosystems are extremely complex and one must be cautious when drawing conclusions regarding the reasons for the decline in our marine fisheries or when proposing solutions to the problem. However, it is generally agreed that the following initiatives will help improve the quantity and diversity of fish living in the Earth’s oceans over the long term: 

1.  Strict bag limits and moratoria on fishing of certain species to allow recovery time— This is not a new idea, since moratoria and bag limits have been used to manage commercial fish populations such as cod in the past with some success. But it is critical that it continue to be applied in the future. It is difficult to enforce moratoria and limits due to the vastness of the sea.  While the United Nations and some national governments attempt oversight, they are unable by themselves to ensure full compliance. Compliance depends to a large extent on education and on the “honor system.”  While many commercial fishing interests follow established rules, other commercial fishing interests balk at them, because of short-sighted profit motives. But, these commercial interests must be educated as to the impact of continued unrestrained overfishing.  If it continues, soon the commercial fishing industry will cease to exist altogether because the fish they seek will be extinct. Framed in this way and understanding that it is in their own best interests to ensure a sustainable population of fish, it may be possible to persuade the vast majority of commercial fishing interests to abide by limits. 

2.  Establish economic sanctions on companies or nations that routinely ignore agreed upon catch limits—In the perfect world, fishing interests might be persuaded to abide by catch limits purely for their own long-term self interest, i.e., to ensure the continued health of the fisheries upon which their businesses rely. However, since ours in not a perfect world, we can expect that some fishing interests will continue to violate limits despite our best efforts at education. For this reason, national governments and international organizations such as the UN should establish an agreed upon sanction system to economically punish companies and nations who continue to violate limits.  Such sanctions could include limiting the access of these entities to loans and investment capital, or freezing monetary assets held in banks.  Such measures have been used to pressure rogue states, e.g., Iran, for political actions incompatible with international law. They could also be used in cases of extreme environmental malfeasance, as relates to global fisheries.     

3.  Educate consumers—Consumers have the ability to “vote with their pocketbooks” and refuse to buy certain fish products that they don’t believe are of sufficient quality or which are tainted in environmental or political terms.  Many consumers, especially in wealthy first world countries such as the US, have become increasingly conscious of the quality and provenance of their food.  The desire for locally and regionally sourced foods, and for sustainably and humanely produced foods, is growing.  The interest in “fair trade” foods, which promise to give the farmer/producer a significant portion of the revenues from the sale of the food is also strong.  Given a choice, many consumers will select those food alternatives that are the most sustainably and justly produced. Labeling which includes the origin and content of fish, as well as information about conditions under which it was raised/harvested is critical to informed consumer choice.   Consumers must be also be educated about the state of our wild fisheries, about issues related to aquaculture, and about some of the environmental abuses present in the fishing and aquaculture industries.  Faced with strong consumer pressure to improve their operations or lose sales, the seafood industry, as a whole, will adopt better, more environmentally responsible practices.  There are prominent examples which illustrate that consumer pressure does drive improvements in seafood industry practices.  One example is the 1986 US consumer boycott of tuna, which led to changes in tuna fishing methods in the South Pacific to minimize by-catch of dolphins. While not perfect, the dolphin-safe tuna inspection and labeling system that US tuna producers adopted has yielded large reductions in dolphin mortality associated with tuna fishing. Another example is the 2002 boycott of the Chilean Sea Bass (aka, the Patagonian Toothfish) led by prominent chefs and restaurateurs.  This fish came perilously close to extinction due to overfishing in the 1990s when it became a trendy dish in high-end restaurants.  Following the 2002 boycott, its population began to recover, and 2014 reports from marine organizations and environmental groups indicate its population is recovering.     

4.  Discontinue or counter government subsidies that distort fish prices and incentivize poor production practices—In some instances, seafood that is produced in a non-sustainable manner is priced preferentially over that which is produced more responsibly, not because such seafood is cheaper to produce, but solely because of government subsidies.  In these cases, government subsidies must be removed or neutralized in order to promote better fishing practices.  While this will cause fish prices to rise, their rise will simply be a reflection of the true cost of production.  A prime example of this situation is the shrimp market in the United States. Shrimp is the single most popular seafood item in the US and the market for it is huge. Most shrimp sold in the US today is produced in China or Thailand by large aquaculture interests. Yet, the US has an enormous domestic source of naturally produced (wild) shrimp in its Gulf Coast shrimp fishery.  These wild shrimp fisheries are largely within US territorial waters and are subject to relatively strict US fishing regulations.  These regulations help to ensure that good practices are being used and that bag limits are complied with.   Prior to the early 2000s, most shrimp consumed in the US was caught in the Gulf Coast.  However, since 2009, the US market has been flooded with inexpensive shrimp from Southeast Asia.  The governments of seven countries-- China, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam—heavily subsidize their own aquaculture interests with billions of dollars annually.  This allows these countries to sell shrimp into the US market at below production cost. The unsubsidized Gulf Coast shrimping industry, centered in Louisiana, cannot compete and many shrimpers have been driven out of business.   Recently, the Louisiana seafood industry has asked that the US government impose a tariff on imports of shrimp from these countries, in order to neutralize the effect of the subsidies [9].  Regardless of one’s economic views on tariffs and subsidies, from a sustainability perspective, it would be preferable for the Louisiana shrimp industry to supply more shrimp into the US market since much of the shrimp aquaculture done in Asia is largely unregulated and uses questionable practices.  Furthermore, the embodied energy (a concept that readers of this essay series are familiar with) associated with shrimp that must be transported thousands of miles is huge. 

5.  Better stewardship of the oceans to avoid  pollution—It is self-evident that the healthier and cleaner the ocean ecosystems are overall, the healthier its inhabitants (the fish) will be.  The subject of ocean pollution is a huge one. Its causes are many and the solutions complex.  Addressing ocean pollution will require international cooperation, since no one nation can by its own actions and laws fully address the problem.  It is also a subject that is beyond the scope of this essay. Let us simply say that we should do all we can to mitigate and prevent ocean pollution, both to protect fisheries and to help promote the health of the planet overall.   

6.  Control global warming—As with ocean pollution, the subject of global climate change and global warming is beyond the scope of this essay.  Its damaging effects go beyond those affecting fisheries and impact all aspects of life on Earth.  However, we have seen, as discussed above, that there are some specific concerns related to fisheries (i.e. the impact on coral reefs and on cod) being driven by global warming. We can’t reverse all of its impacts, but can mitigate some of its effects if we start now to address it.


          Arresting and reversing the decline in our marine fisheries will not be easy. It will require a broad commitment from all the nations of the world.  Most of the challenges are not technical because from a scientific perspective most agree on what needs to be done—prevent overfishing, stop pollution, engage in responsible aquaculture, etc.  Rather, the challenges are political and social.  We need the political and social will to improve current fishing and aquaculture practices.  Building consensus at the international level on the need to employ the various conservation strategies discussed will be a difficult task.  Yet, there are successes to build upon such as the recent resurgence in cod and Chilean sea bass populations.  And, there really is no alternative but to reach consensus because seven billion human beings need to eat if they are to survive; and the oceans continue, as they have throughout human history, to be a critical source of that food. 

The sea does not reward those who are too anxious, too greedy, or too impatient. One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach - waiting for a gift from the sea.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

References and Further Reading:

  1. “Challenges to International Waters:  Regional Assessments in a Global Perspective”, report of the Global International Water Assessment group, published by the United Nations Environment Programme in collaboration with GEF, the University of Kalmar and the Municipality of Kalmar, Sweden, and the Governments of Sweden, Finland, and Norway, 2006.
  2. Pala, Christopher, “Detective Work Uncovers Under-reported Overfishing: Excessive Catches by Chinese Vessels Threaten Livelihoods and Ecosystems in West Africa”, Nature, Vol. 496, April 4, 2013.
  3. Lalasz, Bob, “Coral Reefs and Climate Change:  What the New IPCC Report Says,”  Cool Green Science:  The Science Blog of the Nature Conservancy, March 31, 2014.  Retrieved from  on June 24, 2014.
  4. “Cod and Future Climate Change,” International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) Report No. 305, September 2010.
  5. “Climate, Fisheries, and Protected Resources”, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA), 2014.  Retrieved from   on June 26, 2014. 
  6. Emerson, C., “Aquaculture Impacts on the Environment”, CSA, 1999. Retrieved from  on June 30, 2014.
  7. Sentenac, H., “GMO Salmon May Soon Hit Food Stores, but Will Anyone Buy It?”, March 11, 2014.  Retrieved on July 10, 2014, from
  8. Hall, S.J., A. Delaporte, M. J. Phillips, M. Beveridge and M. O’Keefe. 2011. Blue Frontiers: Managing the Environmental Costs of Aquaculture. The WorldFish Center, Penang, Malaysia.   Retrieved on July 10, 2014, from
  9. “Coalition of Gulf Shrimp Industries Files for Relief from Subsidized Shrimp Imports”. Louisiana Seafood, January 15, 2013. Retrieved on July 11, 2014, from


  •   In Fall 2014, look for Installment Eleven of this series.  Sustainability issues related to the modern pharmaceutical industry will be explored. The inspiration for this essay is The Apothecary, by 20th century Hungarian artist, Vida Gabor.