Making the commitment to participate in the Seafood Free September 30 Day Challenge and give up seafood and all products sourced from the marine environment is a gesture of support, a call to action, and a demand for change.
The argument for an industrial fishing model is becoming increasingly untenable. Some of the methods employed to harvest fish from the ocean are unsustainable and harmful to marine life. Some fisheries are under immense pressure from overfishing and may require time and opportunity for fish populations to be replenished.
Various strategies to address the environmental impacts of industrial fishing have been proposed and actioned by government, industry and marine conservation organisations, and have created realistic, sustained change.
Other challenging issues are proving very difficult to manage, govern and resolve, including piracy, criminal activity, inequity, food security, human rights violations and illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, with enormous social and economic impacts.
In-depth explorations of social and economic impacts are beyond the immediate scope of this project, which focuses primarily on environmental impacts. These critical issues must be included in any debate about the impacts of the fishing industry, and their omission from our main narrative in no way implies we consider them unimportant. They are flagged in discussion, with links to further information. We intend to explore them in greater detail in future iterations of the campaign.
We support change through science, education and legislation. An evidence-based, scientific approach is taken, rather than simply an emotional appeal. The impacts are related to a case study of a marine environment, marine species, or environmental hot topic. The solutions offered are sustainable alternatives to the current model, although there are many more.
We acknowledge the complexity of the issue and agree there is no simple solution. The Seafood Free September campaign focuses on what we can do as consumers, by asking us to step back for a moment and think about the potential impacts of our choices on the ocean.
It is an opportunity to connect with others, share ideas, and raise awareness about the need for change. We support clear communication and calm, rational, reasoned debate.
After completing the 30 Day Challenge, we can take responsibility for our impact on the ocean by opting for Sustainable Seafood alternatives, reducing our seafood consumption, continuing to avoid seafood by taking an extended Seafood Free Challenge or choosing to be Seafood Free 4 Life.
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