Free Fisheries Depletion: Focusing On US Environmental Policy That Would Be Relevant To Congress Research Paper Sample
Environmental issues are generally those that impact the environment, and the adverse effects of various activities carried out by humans in their surrounding environment. Environmental issues range from different topics. One of the impending issues is the depletion of fisheries (Castro and Huber). In this paper, we discuss the impact of fisheries depletion on US population, environment and the development of policies.
Fisheries Depletion: An Environmental Issue
Fisheries depletion is a major concern across the world as its impacts are being considered in the oceanic and human populations. There are several environmental impacts that arise due to fishing that include overfishing, depletion of fisheries, their management and the availability of fishes. Fisheries science program addressed these issues as part of it marine conservation initiatives. The concerns rise as the estimated gap between world population growth and demand and supply of fish grows. There is a large conflicting debate over the consideration that some fisheries must be closed in order to control the depletion of fish population (Castro and Huber).
Impact on United States Environment and Natural Resources
Large scale fishing has marked serious depletions in the fish population. The depletion level is alleviated by the increase in technology and expansion of boundaries. The trend has caused declines in fish population that is impacting the human population and the large fishes as well of the oceans. The fishes have their own ecosystem and a marine or aquatic food chain. The decline in levels of fisheries comes as a major concern as it involves the subsequent reduction of long-lived and larger fishes of the oceans and other water bodies (Pauly et al 689).
Impact on United States Population
The United States has a large ocean zone that has a generous and bountiful population of living and non-living oceanic resources including fishes, minerals and marine mammals. All of these oceanic resources are highly valued by the Americans and the US population living on and off the coastlines. In effect, almost ninety-five percent of trade of the nation is carried out through oceanic resources and a large livelihood of people is dependent on it. The depletion of fisheries results in the creation of policies and laws that impacts the fishery industry and eventually a clash between the fishermen and the government agencies (Cicin-Sain and Robert Knecht).
Impact of Science on the Problem
Science and its evaluation played a major role in the depletion of fisheries. The impact of industrialization is evident in the oceanic world. Early in the nineteenth century it started when fishers started using steam trawlers and diesel engines for fishing, after Second World War further industrialization of fishing occurred. The reduction in fish population has been caused by improved techniques of fishing and pollution arising from the chemical wastes that finds its way into the habitats of fishes. All these advancements of science resulted in exploitation of fish population directly and indirectly. The fishing mortality rate is measured by the catch capabilities of humans which is directly proportional to the advancement in technologies. There have been several cases of the oil spill into the oceans that hamper the aquatic life forms including deaths of fishes. The presence of oil in the water bodies has a severe impact on the thriving of fishes and its larva. This is one of the cases of a direct impact of industrial developments on the ocean life (Pauly et al 694).
Stand of Government and Non-Government Agencies on the Issue
There have been several policies and acts created by the government to curb the menace of fisheries depletion. In 1976, FCMA or Fishery Conservation and Management Act, was brought in to conserve aquatic life. This act ensured creation of conservation zones and other standards for effective management of fisheries. Another act in 1996, the Fisheries Act that was created by the government emphasized on rebuilding the declining fish population. Currently, the United States holds a leadership position in terms of rebuilding measures for fisheries. Certain members of congress do attack the rigidity of these acts. However, the government is focused on managing the fisheries and rebuilding the fish population. The government gets support from other agencies as well like the National Marine Fisheries Service which is responsible for conservation and management of fisheries. There are several suggestions for policies that are received by non-government agencies for improvement and better management of the fisheries. This active government and non-government agency interaction are a positive sign towards solving the problem (Cicin-Sain and Robert Knecht).
Impact of the Issue on US Policies
The policy makers and regulators across United States keep a close eye on the economy of the country. Any incidence of economy or increased unemployment that make people reconsider their financial decisions turns market experts active. For an economy, a single minute change in numbers can change the whole scenario, but no such number exists that can measure what environment is facing due to human decisions. Highly advanced socio-economic indicators and policies are approved but not any indicator exists that can help decision makers in taking decisions with the benefits of environment-friendly trends. Environmental issues are a rapidly growing concern that in recent decades have lead environmentalist gather reliable and ample information. Many countries are concerned and have started a “State of Environment” effort. U.N. Environmental programme is specially designed to analyze and provide a scientifically based environment information. This is massive data that can not be construed in one chance. It needs more strong and authentic bodies to deal with the information. Canadian Government had taken a step in understanding the environment and improving communication through commencing environmental indicator concepts three decades back. Though, any proper indicator is not designed yet, in the interest of environmental issues. In 1992, United Nations Conference on Environment and Development was conducted in Rio de Janeiro where the need for sustainability and implementation of precautionary principles to save the environment was told necessary (Hammond et al).
The guidelines that the agencies follow have been set under the Magnuson-Stevens Act that impact the rebuilding of fishery plans and proposals. The proposals ask for rebuilding of fisheries in order to reduce depletion. The act also asks for ending overfishing. The recovery mandate by this act is unique and retaining it is crucial for the prevention of fisheries depletion (Safina 707).
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