Sunday, August 17, 2008

Humans to Oceans: Drop Dead, Part II

Wow. This Jeremy B.C. Jackson article shows the decline in fish populations because of human activity. Via The Intersection. They have the whole list and I don't know how to put in on this site. Anyway, here's a few numbers.

Globally, we have wiped out 85% of the world's large whales, 91% of the world's oysters, 87% of the sea turtles, and 61% of the seabirds.

Locally, it is even worse. Since 1973, 97% of the tiger sharks off North Carolina have been killed. Since the 1950s, 99% of the oceanic whitetip sharks in the Gulf of Mexico have been killed. 95% of the entire fishery biomass of the Bohal Sea has disappeared since 1959. 93% of the live coral cover of the Caribbean has been eliminated since 1977. The list goes on and on.

The oceans have supported life for a billion years or so. We are looking to wipe it all out in less than 100 years. We are rapidly turning them into deserts. Our lack of stewardship toward the oceans is disgusting and the effects are likely to be permanent.