Human demands will only grow as the human population increases, and unlike many animals we understand the luxury of being able to eat any food we fancy, at any time we like (that is, if you live in a rich country, are an adult and don’t have allergies to certain foodstuffs), but the resources we prey upon don’t have a choice in the matter, and too often we ignore the signs that over-exploitation is a problem that we’re dealing.
It’s easier to see problems on land, and even then we don’t do much about them. Biology is being whittled all around us but there is much more willingness to help and public awareness for this type of crisis, because we can see it. Typically the only people who really see the oceans and the problems they are facing are either the ones studying the problem, or the ones causing the problem.
I’m a little concerned that criticizing business practices is becoming a shameful thing to do these days, with a growing fascination in entrepreneurial ambitions, and the rise of libertarianism in the United States, but letting businesses off the hook for the sake of a free marketplace is not going to solve the problems being caused by business practices that are both incredibly cost effective and incredibly unsustainable.
There’s a lot of life in the oceans, and the damage is being done to the species we do not eat as well. Without even mentioning the destruction of coral reefs, sea life is culled to find fish that has commercial value and then chucked back into the sea as if no harm has been done.
As the influence of the internet expands and it’s possible for more people than every before to connect on an international scale, perhaps the chances of an agreement to make fishing a sustainable practice will increase, but when it comes to the apathy of humanity, especially when it comes to what lines our pockets, I can’t help but be pessimistic.