716: HOW FAITH HARMS THE ENVIRONMENT #1: FISH FOR LENT DEPLETES STOCKS

Giving up meat for Lent and eating fish instead is meant to be a positive and respectful act, a tradition followed by Catholics and others around the world. It is a mindful act that honours creation or existence whatever that may mean according to your own understanding. Unfortunately there aren’t enough fish in the sea and ‘fasting’ like this means participating in the act of extinction.

Yes, guys, there are not enough fish in the sea, so how about giving fish up for Lent? After all there’s nothing in the bible that says a Christian must eat fish during Lent. And if there’s no fish left in the sea after 2050 no Christians will be able to maintain this Lent custom anyway.

Overfishing is due to:-

Too many people eating too few fish,

The lack of fisheries management,

Gillnets,

Bottom trawling,

Mangrove and other habitat destruction,

Pollution,

Acidification,

Climate change.

Three possible responses are:-

1/ Carry on regardless, eating fish as we always have done until there is none left in 2050 as predicted by science.

2/ Eat no seafood whatsoever except seaweed. The problem with abstinence is that it takes away the ability to change human behaviour through market forces. It seems we may have to eat fish in order for fish to survive!

3/ We educate ourselves about seafood, learn about sustainability, eat selectively and reward fisherfolk who practice sustainable fishing by only purchasing fish from them.

In the EU fish stocks could increase by 57% if properly managed. So there you are, fisheries depletion and oceanic extinction can be turned around. This is how we can make sure there will be fish for Lent after 2050.

What’s your choice?

Source:
Marc Deverteuil “Is it ethical to eat fish for Lent?” Trinidad Guardian 6 March 2017 p. A20, and Marc@papaboisconservation.org

 

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