Endangered tuna - what a difference a World Oceans Day makes

Posted by jossc — 9 June 2009 at 12:25pm - Comments

It's all gone a bit tuna crazy in the media over the last couple of days. What with the launch of The End of the Line, the Nobu protests and the Pret a Manger announcement, coverage of the plight of bluefin tuna has accelerated faster than one of the mighty fish themselves (which as we all know by now, is quicker off the mark than a Porsche 911).

Suddenly the issue of overfishing is getting some long overdue attention: Could your tuna sandwich soon be extinct? asked the Daily Mail yesterday; following up today with Should we just stop eating fish? complete with celebrity nudes Greta Scaachi and Terry Gilliam; The Telegraph ran with Elle MacPherson and other famous names boycotting celebrity resteraunt chain Nobu; while the Independent weighed in with How tuna conquered the world, and the BBC News Magazine askeed "Is it time to take tuna off the menu?"

And a similar pattern was repeated on television, with coverage on BBC, ITN and CNN news bulletins, keeping our lead oceans campaigner Willie very busy on World Oceans Day, as you can see below.

All this attention may just be producing some concrete results; Marks & Spencer were quick to announce that all their tuna will now come only from sustainable 'pole and line' fishing, and debate is erupting within the industry about ways to deal with what has all the makings of a PR disaster.

So a good day for bluefin at last? Let's hope so, because without a serious change in our attitudes they are almost certainly heading for extinction within our lifetimes.

And let's also hope that the measures that must be taken to head off such a catastrophe will also see an end to currently unfair unfair trading agreements, which mean that tuna sourced from the waters of some of the world's poorest nations invariably ends up on the tables of the wealthiest.

Tuna update: where to buy responsibly sourced tinned tuna »

About Joss

Bass player and backing vox in the four piece beat combo that is the UK Greenpeace Web Experience. In my 6 years here I've worked on almost every campaign and been fascinated by them all to varying degrees. Just now I'm working on Peace and Oceans - which means getting rid of our Trident nuclear weapons system and creating large marine reserves so that marine life can get some protection from overfishing.

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