Ever since I was little I’ve had a
Ever since I was little I’ve had a passion for oceans and marine life. The first time I saw the ocean, I knew that I wanted to become a marine biologist. The first marine biology class I took only fueled my curiosity and passion. In the class, I learned about the fragility of marine ecosystems and how severely damaged they are. I also learned how over fishing and pollution are part of the reason our oceans are so severely damaged. But most importantly I saw the beauty of oceans, and how each organism, big or small, plays a vital role in each marine ecosystem. And in that moment, I knew that I wanted to do something to save them.
We are having a global fishing crisis. Fishing boats are fishing in these fragile environments that many marine organisms call their home. And when it comes down to it, these fish don’t have a chance. Fish are not like other things we eat, it’s the harvesting of wildlife. When people over fish, not only do they kill the organisms that support the habitat they live in, but they also destroy the benthic layer; the coral and anemones and all these things that were not intended to be caught but ultimately do get destroyed in the process. Oceans are not a grocery store; we cannot continue to take as much as we are without some consequence. The only solution is to give them a break.
One way we can give them a break is by turning to aquaculture instead of over fishing. We can move from being hunter gatherers in the sea to being farmers. People all over the world are already starting to grow things like kelp and fish in the ocean. It is a real opportunity for business and healthy food. And surprisingly, aquaculture isn’t a new idea. Farmers in China have been doing it for nearly 2,000 years. Aquaculture would be extremely beneficial to ocean ecosystems and deliver higher quality food.
My goal is to bring more light to aquaculture and research ways it can be modified and improved. Because of course, aquaculture is not without problems; there are certainly some issues that need regulation. As a marine biologist, I also want to study these problems and improve them. The ocean is resilient and tolerant to a point but we have to be wise about the way we manage it.