Move to Save Fishing Industry Could Kill It
Cod fishermen say slashed Gulf of Maine quotas will spell doom
By Mark Russell, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2013 7:45 AM CST
Commercial fishing boats sit idle in Portland Harbor in Portland, Maine on June 25, 2009. Fishery officials have voted to greatly limit cod catches in New England for the next three years.   (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

(Newser) – Faced with dangerously declining cod stocks, New England fisheries officials voted yesterday to massively cut cod quotas—down 77% from last year's catch for the next three years in the Gulf of Maine, and by 61% for the next year in Georges Bank, near Cape Cod, reports the New York Times. The new limit would reduce the cod catch to 1,550 metric tons in the Gulf, down from 8,000 tons a decade ago, and trim the industry from $80 million to an estimated $55 million.

“We are headed, slowly, seeming inexorably, to oblivion,” said a leading oceanographer on the fisheries panel. The cuts are deep, but officials say they're the result of decades of overfishing—today cod stocks in the Gulf of New England are just 18% of what scientists consider healthy. In Georges Bank, that figure is just 7%. But many fishermen say the cuts will drive them out of business. "I'm bankrupt. That's it," one fisherman told the AP. "I'm all done. The boat's going up for sale." Said another as he exited the vote, "I'm leaving here in a coffin."

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Feb 8, 2013 12:08 PM CST
Idiot comments from ignorant fool Americans. No wonder you're headed to an NDAA 2012 death camp (and you don't even know what articles 1031 and 1032 provide, you ignorant fools). OVER FISHING is what has happened, here! Morons
Feb 5, 2013 9:20 AM CST
The Japs will pick up the difference and sell it to China
Feb 4, 2013 11:17 PM CST
Years ago they wanted the fishermen to cut back to allow the stock to increase, but they bellyached and said they had to keep on fishing to make money to feed their families, etc. So now they've overfished and there's so little cod left. It seems their refusal to cut back years ago is doing exactly what they asked for by being less conservation minded and not really worrying about the future of their children..