China Continues Destroying Reef Life

By: Michael Phife

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This has been upsetting news for all of us. China is actively destroying the coral reef beds around the South China Sea, and not just by accident. They are also over-fishing in areas that are prohibited. This includes killing endangered sea turtles in their wake, and recklessly killing off protected clams that are living within the reef bed itself. They are doing this in order to harvest and obtain as much fish as possible in order to distribute it among their own country for food. Despite this act being illegal by order of the United Nations, this is not stopping them in the slightest. China is even arming their fishing ships with weapons to make sure nobody stops them.

Conservation groups have pointed out how if certain areas of the sea are over-fished then it will lead to a massive endangerment of fish that we consume. Such as the already over-fished blue tuna. Many species are already being over-fished to near extinction. China has a view that if they don’t do it first then somebody else will. Regardless of this being an illegal practice worldwide. Under experimental research, the causation of over-fishing can be catastrophic to the longevity of a species lifetime. The effects of this outcome would be the extinction of certain species of fish if China continues. Activists along with various world leaders that are tied to the UN are trying to emphasize to China the importance of why they should not continue harming sea life for these exact reasons.

 

 

At a Loss

“There is no hope for many of these reefs to recover in the coming decades or centuries. China is trying to solidify its claims, and they obviously have decided not to worry about the environmental aspects. … The environment there is now just written off.”  Says Kent Carpenter from Old Dominion University in Virginia. The rest of the world is working together in order to try and save the wildlife and what is left of South China Sea’s coral reef. China, a country with an immense amount of power, is actively doing something illegal by global standards in order to gain more commodities of fish for their selves in a short term run.

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This is a sick practice that needs to be stopped. Destroying an entire reef bed just to catch a few clams is not worth the harm that it is doing to the environment. Also the harvesting of fish that do not have high shoal counts is threatening our food supplies at a global scale. Making any species become endangered, killing endangered species such as the sea turtle that we see here, or making a species go extinct for a country’s government is a narcissistic act. Over-fishing has a lot more detrimental effects than people realize.

If we continue fishing for more fish than there are of available quantities in the ocean, then we will deplete all future food sources of those species permanently. What would be the point in that? I for one would much rather stop eating any type of food product for a short term in order to let the species recollect in numbers, than to watch it go extinct and never have it again.

 

 

References:

http://www.latimes.com/world/asia/la-fg-south-china-sea-environment-20160713-snap-story.html

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/06/south-china-sea-coral-reef-destruction/