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Showing posts from December, 2017

Putting algae and seaweed on the menu could help save our seafood

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This article was written by Pallavi AnandThe Open University and Daniela SchmidtUniversity of Bristol Cabot Institute. 

If we have to feed 9.8 billion people by 2050, food from the ocean will have to play a major role. Ending hunger and malnutrition while meeting the demand for more meat and fish as the world grows richer will require 60% more food by the middle of the century.

But around 90% of the world’s fish stocks are already seriously depleted. Pollution and increasing levels of carbon dioxide (CO₂) in the atmosphere, which is making the oceans warmer and more acidic, are also a significant threat to marine life.

There is potential to increase ocean food production but, under these conditions, eating more of the species at the top of the food chain, such as tuna and salmon, is just not sustainable. As a recent EU report highlighted, we should instead be looking at how we can harvest more smaller fish and shellfish, but also species that aren’t as widely eaten suc…

Unless we regain our historic awe of the deep ocean, it will be plundered

In the memorable second instalment of Blue Planet II, we are offered glimpses of an unfamiliar world – the deep ocean. The episode places an unusual emphasis on its own construction: glimpses of the deep sea and its inhabitants are interspersed with shots of the technology – a manned submersible – that brought us these astonishing images. It is very unusual and extremely challenging, we are given to understand, for a human to enter and interact with this unfamiliar world.The most watched programme of 2017 in the UK, Blue Planet II provides the opportunity to revisit questions that have long occupied us. To whom does the sea belong? Should humans enter its depths? These questions are perhaps especially urgent today, when Nautilus Minerals, a mining company registered in Vancouver, has been granted a license to extract gold and copper from the seafloor off the coast of Papua New Guinea. Though the company has suffered some setbacks, mining is still scheduled to begin in 2019.

This mark…