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Fisheries Around the World Are Collapsing:
Can We Still Turn the Tide?

Fisheries Around the World Are Collapsing seagull seagull seagull

Can we still turn the tide?
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school of fish
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trio of fish
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swordfish
blue fish with green fins

Oceans are in decline. Projections show that fisheries could collapse by mid-century. fact

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The State of Our Oceans T H E S T A T E O F O U R O C E A N S
fish
fish-pie 70 percent 70 percent

Today, 70 percent of fish populations are fully used, overused or in crisis.

graph of fish stock exploitation graph key
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In the wild,
healthy populations exist
in a balance between
recruitment and mortality, two opposing mechanisms. Recruitment is the amount of young fish added to the population, while mortality is the fish that are removed through harvest or death. Today we see a strong shift towards mortality.

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The Lesser-Known Cause: Plankton Decline T H E L E S S E R - K N O W N C A U S E : P L A N K T O N D E C L I N E
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Phytoplankton are microscopic organisms that float on the top layers of the ocean, providing fish and the entire ecosystem with food.

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Phytoplankton rely upon sunlight, carbon dioxide, water and micronutrients like iron for their health and growth. Iron is mainly brought to the surface from the Earth’s iron-rich crust via upwelling currents or carried by the wind from deserts.

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As the top layer of the ocean warms up as a result of climate change, the mixing and recycling with nutrient-rich deeper water declines.

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A NASA study has shown a constant decrease of phytoplankton at a rate of 1% per year.

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Less plankton means less food for fish. We are facing the collapse of the marine food chain as a result of climate change.

What if we could mimic this natural ocean fertilization process to restore ocean life?

references
Ocean Seeding O C E A N S E E D I N G

Feed the Ocean to Feed the Fish

Ocean fertilization is the natural process by which iron particles reach the sunlit upper layers of the ocean and enhance primary productivity. This can happen due to upwelling currents at the western seaboard of continents, iceberg melting, seasonal glacier runoff, riverine input, iron-rich dust in winds, and volcanic eruptions that deposit iron over the ocean surface.

More specifically, ocean iron fertilization, commonly abbreviated as OIF, is the artificial mimicry of ocean fertilization. OIF adds iron to nutrient-limited areas of the ocean, and it has been implemented in the past to study the flow of carbon in the marine ecosystem, testing ideas related to carbon dioxide removal from the atmosphere to mitigate climate change. Therefore, OIF has a been historically linked to geoengineering.

In contrast, Ocean Seeding is the application of iron for the purpose of enhancing primary productivity and the trophic cascade that depends on the phytoplankton bloom, specifically diatoms, for energy and nutrients. Ocean Seeding tests hypotheses related to marine ecology and trophic dynamics, in order to build a better understanding of energy pathways in the marine food web. Under this research focus, Ocean Seeding is not geoengineering.

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big fish
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The selected area must intersect the migratory routes of targeted, economically important fish.

ship adding iron to the ocean

Ocean seeding mimics the natural processes that add iron to the oceans.

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Very little iron is required: about 1 cup per hectare.

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Ocean seeding has been successfully tested in 12 previous scientific experiments.

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We must plant the sea
and herd its animals
using the sea as farmers
instead of hunters. That is what
civilization is all about — farming
replacing hunting.

—Jacques Cousteau

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Reviving the Ocean R E V I V I N G T H E O C E A N

Our way of life has put the ocean on the verge of collapse within this generation. If we want to secure our oceans, we must implement:

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killer whale
squid

Now is our time to feed the ocean and reverse our acts. Support our scientific research and be part of the change.

Join the conversation on Twitter
#OceanSeeding