With competition intensifying to supply mostly European markets, fishing grounds off West Africa are going the way of Europe’s: toward depletion. These Senegalese, who had hoped to catch desirable export species such as shrimp or sole, will throw away the fish in their nets—wasting valuable protein for Africa.
From Paul Salopek story, Fade to Blue:
Such grotesque waste is termed “bycatch”: the modern fishing equivalent of mowing down buffalo herds for their hides and leaving the flayed carcasses on the prairie to rot. Anywhere in the maritime world, killing so many untargeted species to harvest a handful of valuable fish could be subject to prosecution. Yet so toothless are the laws of the sea in the far, tattered shores of the Earth–whether they be Angolan environmental regulations or the UN Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries–that a captain’s main worry is that the “wrong fish” are clogging up his nets.Buy This Image