MANAGING MARINE RESOURCES SUSTAINABLY 8/17/2011 Sanie Joel V. Cagoco Managing Marine Resources Sustainably 2011 ARTICLE SUMMARY Eutrophication is a syndrome of ecosystem responses to human activities that fertilize water bodies with nitrogen (N) and phosphorous (P), often leading to changes in animal and plant populations and degradation of water and habitat quality. Nitrogen and phosphorous are essential components of structural proteins, enzymes, cell membranes, nucleic acids and molecules that capture and utilize light and chemical energy to support life.
The biologically available forms of Nitrogen and Phosphorous are present at low concentrations in pristine lakes, rivers, estuaries and in vast regions of the upper ocean. The natural resources of the sea are extremely valuable and, for the most part, are renewable. If properly managed, they should provide continuing returns into the future without diminishing their productivity. Yet, for many of these resources, including those of importance to industries such as ? shing and tourism, ef? ient management and sustainable exploitation have been the exception rather than the rule. Resources have been depleted and have collapsed due to over-exploitation, with severe economic and social consequences for the humans relying on them. Increasing demand for ocean resources due to population growth and economic expansion has raised concern about the sustainability of the ocean resources and amenities that contribute to the well-being of people around the globe. Highly productive fisheries have collapsed, marine and coastal habitats have been
Eutrophication was first evident in lakes and rivers as they became choked with excessive growth of rooted plants and floating algal scums, prompting intense study in the 1960’s – 70’s and culmination in the scientific basis for banning phosphate detergents and upgrading sewage treatment to reduce wastewater Nitrogen and Phosphorous discharges to inland waters. lost or degraded, and carbon dioxide from fossil fuels is changing the climate and some of the basic properties of the marine environment. These stresses increase the urgency of developing sustainable practices for activities in the ocean.
Of the ocean’s renewable resources, fish are probably the most pressing concern to people around the world. The sustainability of the ocean’s fisheries is essential for the well-being of people in both developing and industrialized nations, through markets that range from local to global in scale. Seafood is the major source of protein for more than 1 billion people internationally, while about 44 million depend on fishing or fish farming for their livelihood. Because seafood provides an immediate connection between the ocean and people, we discuss fish production in terms of managing the wild harvest and developing sustainable quaculture practices. (Susan Roberts and Kenneth Brink) 1 Managing Marine Resources Sustainably 2011 Common to most definitions of sustainability is the concept of using renewable resources without jeopardizing their availability for use by future generations. Sustainable means different things to different people, and notably has been a point of contention in fisheries management. The 1992 UN Convention on Biological Diversity defined sustainable use as ? the use of components of biological diversity in a way and at a rate that does not lead to long-term decline of biological diversity, thereby maintaining its otential to meet the needs and aspirations of present and future generations. Fisheries management involves regulating when, where, how, and how much fishermen are allowed to harvest to ensure that there will be fish in the future. It draws on fisheries science in order to find ways to protect fishery resources so sustainable exploitation is possible. Modern fisheries management is often referred to as a governmental system of appropriate management rules based on defined objectives and a mix of management means to implement the rules, which are put in place by a system of monitoring control and surveillance.
Thru Fishery management, oceans would be fished and farmed to protect long-term production, not to generate the highest short-term cash flow. Market prices for catches would rise and fall within a predictable and profitable range, which would reward fairly the boat owners’ investments and crews’ labor. Fishing families would earn stable, year-round wages, and their coastal communities would thrive on these fishing wages and income generated by supporting businesses. Consumers would have stable supplies of high-quality local seafood.
An armistice would end the debilitating wars between fishermen and environmentalists; government regulators would make quick realistic decisions; and court dockets would be empty of head-of-the-pin fisheries cases Many different strategies have been proposed to make fisheries more sustainable. A few of these approaches, which could be pursued in concert, are described here: (a) adopting more conservative catch limits, (b) changing the economic incentives of the fishing industry, and (c) enhancing the demand for sustainable products.
An ecosystem is the basic functional unit in ecology, as it includes both organisms and their abiotic environment. No organism can exist without the environment. Ecosystem represents the highest level of ecological integration which is energy based. A pond, a lake, a coral reef, part of any field and a laboratory culture can be some of the examples of ecosystems. Thus an ecosystem is 2 Managing Marine Resources Sustainably 2011 defined as a specific unit of all the organisms occupying a given area which interacts with the physical environment producing distinct trophic structure, biotic diversity and material cycling.
Aquaculture, also known as aqua farming, is the farming of aquatic organisms such as fish, crustaceans, molluscs and aquatic. Aquaculture involves cultivating freshwater and Growing our own seafood through aquaculture can provide part of the solution to a major saltwater populations under controlled conditions, and can be contrasted with commercial fishing, which is the harvesting of wild fish. Mariculture refers to aquaculture practiced in marine environments. The wild capture fisheries are only one part of the seafood industry.
The largest growth in seafood production since 1990 has been in aquaculture, which currently accounts for about one-third of the world’s total fish and shell harvest. Aquaculture is expected to increase in importance as the demand for seafood increases. ecological catastrophe – overharvesting of the world’s marine life – while contributing to the global supply of healthy seafood. In aquaculture, there is also the option of farming herbivores instead of carnivores. This typically means culturing filter-feeding shellfish such as mussels, clams, and oysters.
These species do not require fish feeds – they are mostly herbivores that consume phytoplankton in the water and their culture can be beneficial in areas prone to phytoplankton blooms and eutrophication. However, some of the other concerns about aquaculture also apply to the culture of these mollusks including the effects of aquaculture operations on marine habitats and resident species. ARTICLE’S RELATIONSHIP TO PHILIPPINE ENVIRONTMENTAL CONDITION AND IT’S AGENCIES CONCERNED The country’s main environmental institution is the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
It was created in 1987 by Executive Order No. 192, which consolidated several government agencies performing environmental functions. The DENR is primarily responsible for the conservation, management, development and proper use of the country’s environment and natural resources, specifically forest and grazing lands, mineral resources, and lands of the public domain, as well as the licensing and regulation of all natural resources. 3 Managing Marine Resources Sustainably 2011 Apart from the DENR, there are other national government agencies involved in environmental management.
The major ones include the Department of Agriculture (DA) and its Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Health (DOH), National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), National Water Resources Board (NWRB), National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR), and Philippine National Oil Corporation (PNOC) (the last two, in connection with watershed areas and reservations supporting hydroelectric power generation and geothermal fields, respectively).
Moreover, even agencies not traditionally associated with environmental functions, such as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), have been given environmental management roles under the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. Given the country’s poor fiscal position, limited financial resources is a problem that the DENR and other agencies with environmental management functions share with the rest of the bureaucracy.
To address the environmental sector’s financial needs despite this limitation, reforms are necessary in both demand and supply sides. Progress has been made in terms of the institutional arrangements in the Philippines in addressing marine resources sustainably but the present situation requires a comprehensive strategy that will enable the country to effectively chart a more sustainable future. The establishment of a clear institutional mechanism by which the challenge of managing marine resources can be addressed is necessary.
Ambiguities in the government institutions tasked to deal with marine resources issues must be eliminated. The highest priority however is to adopt and implement a strategic framework which should guide the Philippine response in managing our marine resources. CONCLUSION If aquaculture is to fulfill its great promise, however, governments and citizens alike must be vigilant. Short-term economic considerations will make it all too easy for marine aquaculture to slip into the ecologically harmful methods of large-scale, intensive livestock production increasingly adopted on land.
Despite some recent improvements, experience to date with commercial salmon farming is not encouraging in this regard. The most popular farmed species among consumers in developed countries tend to be carnivores, creating an additional challenge to sustainability. Forms of 4 Managing Marine Resources Sustainably 2011 aquaculture that consume more fish than they produce cannot assist society in addressing the global problem of wild fisheries depletion.
As we look forward over a century, it is clear that human impacts will continue, but that the nature and form of those impacts will surely change. New approaches are being developed to help balance the uses of coastal and marine environments, including no consumptive ecosystem services such as erosion control, biological carbon sequestration, recreation and tourism. Continued investments in research and strategic, long-term planning can help to ensure that future generations will have an opportunity to experience and enjoy the ocean and its many resources.
The responsible use of the planet’s resources to meet the needs of society for healthful food is a goal universally supported by those across the spectrum of the aquaculture debate. All human activities have an effect on the environment, but in these early years of the 21st century, we are increasingly realizing that we have trod too heavily on the planet. Unsustainable consumption patterns, particularly in developed countries, are leading to global ecological disruption and rapid depletion of both renewable and nonrenewable resources. It is in this context that the future of aquaculture must be determined.
Growing our own seafood through aquaculture can provide part of the solution to a major ecological catastrophe—overharvesting of the world’s marine life—while contributing to the global supply of healthy seafood. About the article’s authors: S. J. Roberts is the director of the Ocean Studies Board at the National Research Council where she has worked since 1998. She received her B. S. in zoology from Duke University and Ph. D. in marine biology from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She has undertaken research on fish physiology, symbiosis, and developmental biology.
At the National Research Council, she has conducted many studies on marine resource issues such as marine protected areas, ecosystem effects of fishing, and endangered species. K. H. Brink is a physical oceanographer at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, where he has worked since 1980. He was educated at Cornell (B. S. ) and Yale (Ph. D. ). His research concentrates on currents over the continental shelf, and their implications. His service as President of The Oceanography Society, and as Chair of the National Research Council’s Ocean Studies Board, have involved him in a range of practical concerns about the ocean. 5
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