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Hooked on fishing, and we're heading for the bottom, says scientist

can be turned around. He believes that a reduction of excess fishing capacity, the creation of "no-take zones" covering about 20 per cent of habitats, and political enforcement of sustainable fishing levels will result not just in pulling back from the brink, but more fish for our tables.

"The irony is that reducing fishing actually increases the catch in the long term," says Dr. Pauly. "Public policy must be downsizing the industry to a level that allows for sustained catch and stocks to rebound."

This past October, Dr. Pauly was awarded the prestigious 2005 International Cosmos Award. The award recognizes exemplary research that "promotes the harmonious co-existence of nature and mankind." Dr. Pauly, 59, has authored or co-authored more than 500 scientific articles, book chapters and shorter contributions, and authored, or (co-)edited about 30 books and reports. He was elected to the Royal Society of Canada in 2003.

He says receiving the prize was one additional push to move his message from the open sea to the political beachhead. But he emphasizes that research alone won't solve the crisis. It's time for dramatic political leadership to move from a global marine tragedy to a future with bountiful fish.

Says Dr. Pauly: "Reclaiming the ocean and its resources from excessive use will be a key task for humanity in the 21st century."


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Source:Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council


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