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Farming the sea is as threatening to the environment as farming the land. Discuss.

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Introduction

Farming the sea is as threatening to the environment as farming the land. Discuss. To answer this question we need to ask ourselves why this issue has arisen in the first instance, and where and how it originated. Firstly I need to find out what farming is concerned with and what the current world food situation is. This will provide a basic background knowledge on which I can base my study. The environmental issues of farming on and off land will need to be compared in a range of farming techniques to establish the cause and effect of threats to the environment. In the oceans I will be looking into the over fishing of global fisheries and the impacts that this has on the marine, social and economic environments, of areas worst hit. I will be looking at a case study of a Canadian Cod based in fishery New Found land as an example of causes and effects of over fishing on the environment. As new technology is ever growing, the new wave of aquaculture and Salmon farming in Scottish lochs that is emerging will provide an alternative viewpoint of the effects on the environment to traditional methods of fishing. Along side aquaculture I will be looking at effects of genetically engineered fish on wild stocks again using salmon as a prime example, this should give me an insight into the effects it has on biodiversity in the sea. ...read more.

Middle

The culprits are the draggers (the boats that haul nets along the sea bed)" In the 1950's the technique of dragging took of and the cod stocks were nearly wiped out, in 1977 Canada brought the stocks under control but because of new technologies stronger draggers were introduced and the cod did not have time to fully recover and so in 1992 the fishery collapsed. Another problem with the draggers was the time that they caught the fish, targeting them when they were spawning a time when the population is highly vulnerable to capture. Campaigners against the trawling technology claim that the trawling negatively affects the reproductive behaviour of the cod and in addition the trawling activity is thought to cause dispersion of eggs and milt, resulting in a higher fertilisation failure. When placed alongside farming on land, a comparison can be made to a problem known as over grazing. I wanted to raise this issue as it is concerned with the over use and exploitation of a natural resource like over fishing. Over grazing is a form of soil erosion caused mainly in LEDC's where land for grazing is not adequately maintained and managed, the cattle are free to roam wherever uncontained. In Nepal the farmers used to be nomadic so the cattle did not over use one particular area of land, but due to frequent droughts and political issues farming patterns have become more sedentary. ...read more.

Conclusion

The aquiculture trade also has vast negative effects, in the coastal areas and in the locks of Scotland, threatening the genetic makeup of some of the marine wildlife. The social and economical environments of the humans is vastly effected by farming as a whole, The farmers of Nepal rely solely on farming and so if the continued ill managed farming techniques was left unchanged their welfare would be at steak. In much the same respect many countries rely heavily on fishing as their main revenue, and many of the restrictions that could be imposed would be catastrophic for them. We know very little about the oceans and therefore cannot predict the consequences of our actions. This is the main problem caused by fishing; we have only explored and understand about 2% of the oceans9. There are so many varying problems caused by fishing that when fully understood appear to have far more devastating affects than farming the land. The fact that we know vast amounts more about the land provides a huge advantage when coming to manage farming techniques, which makes it a much more sustainable industry. 1 http://www.undp.org 2 www.greenpeace.org 3 David Brown Fisheries editor (Paper unknown/date unknown) 1 www.greenpeace.com 2 New internationalist magazine, July 00, Fishy Business. 3 UN food and agricultural organisation 4 New Internationalist magazine, July 00, fishy business. 5 www.greenpeace.org 6 World watch institute 7 NI July 00 Fishy Business. 8 New internationalist magazine July 00 9 The Blue planet BBC 01 Seth Barlow ...read more.

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