Posted by Eric Frasco on June 15, 2000 at 02:01:03:
In Reply to: Re: We better have that zone if we don't wan't to dive in the desert posted by Gianni on June 14, 2000 at 16:19:15:
Gianni and Cormerant:
What areas of the Channel Islands and how much will be set aside as reserves depends on several factors.
Most importantly, if the fishery(ies) in those areas are facing collapse, they most certainly should be shut for whatever reasonable time is necessary to return them to a healthy level. But permanantly closing ALL of the Channel Islands to all take is unreasonable, for several reasons.
Our nation relies heavily on harvest of seafood at a commercial level for feeding many millions of its residents. If we were to close down the entire area, we would end up importing large quantities of seafood from other countries, contries that may not have the environmental concerns and ethics that our nation has. In the long run, the fisheries of those nations could collapse, and then we would be without a food source for seafood.
Divers visit the underwater environment and see the difference from year to year, or from one area to the other. The Channel Islands seem much more pristine than say Santa Catalina because fewer divers can get there. So as a diver, you may have a different appreciation of the Channel Islands than other user of the area, such as sport fishermen.
The issue is not "us vs. them", the issue is that the fisheries all over the world are connected in some rather intricate ways that are nearly impossible for mankind to be able to understand or to be able to properly manage. Collapse of a fishery in another nation will eventually lead to some kind of impact in adjacent communities, and eventually in our community itself. So we must all work together, divers and fishermen, to ensure what is out there now is there again in the future.
California Fish & Game is now formulating a management plan, they are in the stage of accepting comments and input. Their plan may include closure of large portions of the Channel Islands.
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