Fish Stocks Are Fine, So Dig In
Reports of overfished oceans are exaggerated: Aquatics professor
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 15, 2011 12:55 PM CDT
Tuna are assorted in lines at a fish market in Japan.   (AP Photo/Kyodo News)

(Newser) – The last few years have seen lots of gloom-and-doom scenarios about how the world is running out of fish. Don't believe it, writes aquatics professor Ray Hilborn in the New York Times. Flawed studies produced those results. In reality, "fish stocks worldwide appear to be stable, and in the United States they are rebuilding, in many cases at a rapid rate." It's true that some species, such as bluefin tuna, are overfished in international waters, a problem that requires "global cooperation and American leadership."

Rules governing American fisheries, meanwhile, need to be made more flexible to better match the ebb and flow of particular species. It's all part of the give and take "between the desire for oceans as pristine ecosystems and the desire for sustainable seafood," writes Hilborn. And none of it means we should feel guilty about digging into a plate of fish.