Today is World Fisheries Day. I immediately think about what’s happening in British Columbia and how the Musgamagw Dzawada’enuxw Nation continues to stand, as they have for 30 years, in opposition to open-net fish farms in their territory. From there, my mind goes to places like Galicia, Spain, where women have formed an association to support sustainable fisheries in their region. The harvesting of mussels there is a prime example of profitable Green Ocean Farming. I think about Cuba, and the Gardens of the Queen where a pristine marine ecosystem is intact, even with the existence of a lucrative lobster fishery, because of protections that are made possible through cooperation. I reflect on my time in Kanyakumari, India, and Honduras, and Madagascar and Greenland, where indigenous fisher-people are bringing back fewer and fewer fish to feed their villages.
I used to believe that the oceans could feed the world. I am not so sure of that today.
A fishery is "a place where fish are reared for commercial purposes; a fishing ground or area where fish are caught; or the occupation or industry of catching or rearing fish."
What I am sure of today is that if we don't start paying more attention, taking more action and making more real changes in policy, that we won't have any fisheries left at all.
I stand with the Musgmagw Dzawada’enuwx First Nations people, whose traditional territories are utilized illegally. I stand with artisanal fisher-people from around the world who rely on a healthy fishery for survival, including those in my home province of British Columbia.
Video: In British Columbia's Broughton Archipelago, at Midsummer Fish Farm, with footage from John and Jane Doe.
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