The paradox is obvious: Whatever we do to sustain the national fishing industry will be countered by external suppliers operating outside sustainability management regimes to meet an ever-growing market demand.
Since 1994, the NRDC has prosecuted a series of federal lawsuits to persuade the Navy to adopt -- and its federal regulator the National Marine Fisheries Service to require -- common sense safeguards for the protection of whales and other marine life from unnecessary harm.
Fishermen no longer throw thousands of pounds of fish overboard because of daily trip limits. And bycatch (the capture of non-target ocean wildlife, which has long been a serious problem in New England) is also on the decline.
Healthy fish populations create jobs, support coastal economies, help repair damaged marine ecosystems and provide increased recreational opportunities for anglers like myself to bring home fish for my dinner table more often.
According to the National Marine Fisheries Service, the economic value of ending overfishing and rebuilding all of our depleted U.S. fish populations could add up to $31 billion in sales and support 500,000 new jobs.