Marine life has largely been affected over the past fifty years, according to a report from the Zoological Society of London and the World Wildlife Fund. This report reveals that almost half (49 percent) of the global marine population has been slashed since 1970.
Moreover, the population sizes of tuna, bonitos and mackerel have been reduced by 74 percent from 1970 to 2012.
The study is extremely comprehensive, as the researchers looked at the data of more than 5,800 populations of over 1,200 species.
The numbers revealed are extremely worrying, given that large fish represent a major food source for many people who only depend on fishing to survive. Big franchises and fine dining restaurants are also going to be affected by the massive drop on the long term.
The worst part is that there are no indications that the marine population will go up anytime soon or that it will ever recover. Overfishing, which is most likely the main cause for such a drop, is still a major problem that organizations have not been able to find sustainable solutions for.
Apart from overfishing, the researchers have also mentioned that climate change has had a huge impact on the decline of fish population worldwide. As the temperature of the water is constantly on increase mode, marine creatures are much more exposed to premature death risks due to the lack of food, the lack of cool water bacteria and the increasingly high acidity levels caused by CO2 emissions.
“The ocean works hard in the background to keep us alive, generating half of the world’s oxygen and absorbing almost a third of the carbon dioxide produced from burning fossil fuels. These devastating figures reveal how quickly human beings are changing the wildlife in our oceans and are a stark warning of the problems we might face as a result,” said Ken Norris, who is the Director of Science at the Zoological Society of London.
The World Wildlife Fund recommends that wildlife and natural habitats be protected by law and marine protected areas be created to help these populations.
Moreover, governments should put an end to overfishing and come up with solutions to address the issue of global warming. Huge protected areas should also be created to protect marine life as much as possible.
Image Source: ecowatch