retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Cape Cod Times reports that “in what could be the first major economic blow to local fisheries pinned on global warming, regulators are contemplating shutting down the lobster industry from Buzzards Bay to Long Island Sound for five years due to a drastic population drop brought on by temperature changes of just a few degrees in inshore waters.

“Lobstermen south of Cape Cod have seen their catches nosedive for the past decade, from more than 20 million pounds in 1997 to less than 5 million last year. In the past, overfishing, water pollution, pesticides and an outbreak of shell disease were blamed for the failure of the fishery. But tough fishing regulations have done nothing to reverse the trend, and some scientists now believe water temperature may be the primary obstacle to recovery.”
KC's View:
It just seems like nine miles of bad road for so much of the fishing industry. First, we have the general concern that overfishing will eventually create broad shortages of various kinds of seafood. Then, we have the impact of the BP Gulf Coast oil spill, which is doing untold damage to both the environment and the economy, hurting specifically so many people who depend on the seafood industry in that area of the country. And now, this, in which global warming seems to having an impact on the lobstering industry.

What is amazing to me is that these kinds of stories emerge, and the people who raise these concerns get painted by some as “alarmists.” I write things as innocuous as “we need to take care of our fragile planet“ which is hardly the most radical thing that anyone could say these days, and I get email from folks suggesting that I’ve lost touch with reality and have been brainwashed by the forces of liberalism.

I don’t think so. These aren’t exactly the signs of the apocalypse, but none of this strikes me as anything that can be ignored.