‘Case of the Week’ 4 (Stoa): Bottom Trawling

Important Disclaimer: We pretty much just throw these together over the weekend, and don’t put a lot of work into them. Case of the Week cases are not subject to the same editorial process and stringent quality standards as the COG 2013 sourcebook, and are frequently contributed by non-COG authors. You may find material and sources in these cases that would not appear in the sourcebook. That said, we hope these cases will be useful to you; enjoy!

About the Author: Daniel Gaskell is the developer of the popular Factsmith research software and the lead editor of COG 2013. He debated in the NCFCA and Stoa for six years, qualifying to both NCFCA Nationals and NITOC multiple times. Daniel attends Baylor University.

1AC: Trade Sanctions for Bottom Trawling

By Daniel Gaskell

Imagine for a second that you live next to a nature preserve – a huge forest filled with animals and plants. It’s great – people go there to hunt and fish; the trees help keep the air clean; Bambi frolicks in a clearing somewhere. Then one day you come home and it’s gone. Utter devastation. The trees have been ripped out by the roots and there are just rocks and mud everywhere. You see a burly worker leaning up against a bulldozer, so you go up and ask him, “Hey? What happened?” He pulls out a handkerchief, wipes the sweat off his face and says, “Yeah, we were trying to catch some squirrels, so we just ripped it all out.”

Preposterous? Unfortunately, no. Something very like this is happening in the oceans as we speak. It’s called bottom trawling, a tremendously destructive fishing technique that my partner and I want to end. That’s why we stand Resolved: That the United States Federal Government should substantially reform its marine natural resource policies.

First, to make sure we’re all talking about the same thing, let’s look at:

PART 1: DEFINITIONS

The American Heritage Science Dictionary defines marine as “relating to the sea”, and a natural resource as “Something, such as a forest, a mineral deposit, or fresh water, that is found in nature and is necessary or useful to humans”. (http://dictionary.reference.com) So essentially we’re talking about things that occur naturally in the ocean that are useful to humans – like fish.

Now, let’s look at the problem we’re trying to solve, in:

PART 2: HARMS

Let me explain what bottom trawling is, and why it’s so bad, in our first point:

Point 1. Incredibly Destructive: Bottom trawling lays waste to deep-sea ecosystems

Prof. Howard Schiffman (JD, PhD, international lawyer and visiting associate professor of environmental conservation education at New York University), 2011 (lecture originally delivered in 2010), Thomas M. Cooley Law Review, “The Evolution Of Fisheries Conservation And Management: A Look At The New South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organization In Law And Policy”, Vol. 28, No. 2, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.cooley.edu/lawreview/_docs/2012/vol28/2/10-Schiffman.pdf (page 184-185)

Bottom trawling is unquestionably one of the most destructive fishing techniques ever devised. Boats on the surface drag nets across the ocean floor with the assistance of heavy weights to keep them in place. It is a nondiscriminating fishing method that hauls up everything caught in the nets. This includes ancient sea corals and sponges. The visuals supporting this are striking. Healthy seamounts are brimming with life. There are layers of colorful coral, fish, sea stars, anemone, and other marine life. Photos of trawled seamounts, by contrast, look like a highway after a snowstorm. There is just no doubt that bottom trawling lays waste to whatever it comes into contact with on the sea floor.”

Bottom trawling isn’t just destroying the environment; it’s destroying the fishing industry from the inside out, as we see in:

Point 2. Unsustainable: Bottom trawling destroys its own fishing grounds and will drive itself out of business by 2025

Dr. Sara Maxwell (PhD, research fellow at the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), Prof. Richard Haedrich (PhD, professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland), Prof. Alex Rogers (PhD, professor of conservation biology at Oxford, leads the Core Programme on Biodiversity at the British Antarctic Survey), Dr. Lance Morgan (PhD in ecology, president of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), and Dr. Elliot Norse (PhD, chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), June 2005, Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, “Why the world needs a time – out on high – seas bottom trawling”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/TimeOut_english.pdf

“Rather than fishing deep-sea fish sustainably, commercial bottom trawlers reflect a typical pattern of serial over-fishing that is best summarized as “plunder and push on”. High-seas bottom trawling – as currently practiced- quickly renders localized deepsea fish populations commercially extinct, whereupon fishing vessels move on to the next fishing ground. Glover and Smith predict that all deep-sea fisheries present in 2003 will be commercially extinct by 2025.

Point 3. Unnecessary: Bottom trawling makes up a tiny fraction of all fishing

Dr. Sara Maxwell (PhD, research fellow at the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), Prof. Richard Haedrich (PhD, professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland), Prof. Alex Rogers (PhD, professor of conservation biology at Oxford, leads the Core Programme on Biodiversity at the British Antarctic Survey), Dr. Lance Morgan (PhD in ecology, president of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), and Dr. Elliot Norse (PhD, chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), June 2005, Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, “Why the world needs a time – out on high – seas bottom trawling”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/TimeOut_english.pdf

Globally, the market impact of HSBT is tiny: it constituted only a fraction of one percent of the reported total marine fish catch in 2001 by volume and value. The world’s high-seas bottomtrawling fleet consists of several hundred vessels at most. The catch level in 2001 would at best support between 100 and 200 vessels operating on a year-round equivalent basis. This compares to a global fishing fleet of approximately 3.1 million vessels.”

Let me re-emphasize that last point. All this horrific damage is coming from just a few hundred fishing vessels – barely a blip on the radar compared to all the rest of the fishing we do. So if bottom trawling isn’t economically important, why don’t we just ban it? That’s the question over a thousand scientists have asked.

Point 4. Must Ban: 1,136 scientists support banning bottom trawling

John Pickrell, February 19, 2004, National Geographic News, “Trawlers Destroying Deep-Sea Reefs, Scientists Say”, accessed August 8, 2013, news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/02/0219_040219_seacorals.html

“Yet even before these deep reefs have been fully explored and documented, they are being destroyed by unregulated deep-sea trawling. Concerned that many species may be lost before they are identified, a group of 1,136 scientists from 69 countries is appealing for new laws to protect deep-ocean corals and sponges. “Based on current knowledge, deep-sea coral and sponge communities appear to be as important to the biodiversity of the oceans and the sustainability of fisheries as their analogues in shallow tropical waters,” said a statement released earlier this week at both the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Seattle and the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. “We urge the United Nations and appropriate international bodies to establish a moratorium on bottom trawling on the high seas,” the scientists said. They include Harvard University’s renowned ecologist Edward O. Wilson and former head of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, D. James Baker.

So we should get the United Nations to ban it. Yeah… about that. They’ve tried – several times – but it hasn’t worked. Let’s look at this in more detail in:

PART 3: INHERENCY

Point 1. UN Failed: The UN passed resolutions, but they haven’t been followed

Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (an organization of over 70 scientific and environmental organizations committed to protecting the deep sea), static information page, “What’s Been Done”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/whatsbeendone/unprocesses.cfm

“For the past decade, the issue of protecting biodiversity in the deep sea in areas beyond national jurisdiction – the high seas – has been extensively debated by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and in other international fora. The UNGA adopted a series of resolutions, beginning with UN Resolution 59/25 in 2004, which called on high seas fishing nations and regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) to take urgent action to protect vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) from destructive fishing practices, including bottom trawl fishing, in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

[later, in the same context:]

Based on this review, the DSCC concluded that high seas fishing States are, with few exceptions, failing to live up to the provisions of UNGA resolutions 61/105 and 64/72. As a result, deep sea stocks continue to be increasingly overexploited and vulnerable marine ecosystems may be lost. At the September 2011 workshop, the DSCC called on States fishing in areas where the UN resolutions have not been fully implemented to cease bottom fishing, as is required by resolution 64/72, until effective measures consistent with the resolutions are adopted and implemented, including required impact assessments.”

Point 2. Unenforceable: Trawling nations have no incentive to stop, and the UN can’t make them

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 143)

“None of the recommendations are ill intentioned or misguided, but they still fail to address the underlying problem of enforcement and member compliance. Because UNGA Resolutions are non-binding and generally not enforceable, fishing nations and RFMOs have no incentive to make these controversial but environmentally necessary choices.”

So the UN tried to ban bottom trawling, but nobody has an incentive to comply. But what if we gave them an incentive? Let’s look at the reform we’re proposing, in:

PART 4: THE PLAN

We have two mandates, to be enacted by Congress, the President, and any necessary federal agencies:

1. Ban Trawling. The U.S. shall ban all deep-sea bottom trawling within U.S. territory.

2. Trade Sanctions. The U.S. shall exercise its authority under the Pelly Amendment and applicable World Trade Organization laws to ban the import of agricultural products from any nation that refuses to stop bottom trawling.

Both mandates shall take effect in one year. Any necessary funding shall be provided through normal means.

Now, let’s take a look at why this plan will help solve the problem of trawling, in:

PART 5: SOLVENCY

We have one point:

Effective: Unilateral trade measures will help, and we must act now

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 167-168)

“Because of the vulnerability of seamount ecosystems and the decimating effect bottom trawling causes them, time is of the essence. Each trawling pass destroys 95-98% of all coral life on seamounts, and these corals take an extremely long time to recover, if they are able to recover at all. Other deep-sea animals, like fish and invertebrates, are directly threatened as well, largely due to their slow growth and reproductive rates. Considering that scientists have explored less than 1% of all seamounts in the deep ocean and that many organisms on seamounts may only exist in that one place, bottom trawling nations are pushing species to the brink of extinction without even knowing that these species exist. A U.N. moratorium on deep-sea bottom trawling activities is a worthy goal. However, without a binding and enforceable treaty or resolution, U.N. action is not enough. Trade measures, however, are effective.

Using Pelly and MSRA to apply unilateral trade measures against bottom trawling nations should be legal under international trade law if nations apply them within the framework of the Shrimp-Turtle dispute. The United States should step in and boldly enact import restrictions and trade sanctions on deep- sea bottom trawling nations as a display of global environmental responsibility.”

We can’t afford to hold off any more. The longer we wait for the UN to get its act together, the worse the situation gets, and the more barren and useless deep-sea fisheries become. It’s time for us to put our words into action, step up, and end this useless environmental tragedy.

Thank you, and please vote Affirmative.

Backup: Bottom Trawling

I like this concept because it’s straightforward and it has a strongly visceral aspect. The literature is on your side, too; pretty much every good source agrees that bottom trawling needs to be stopped or at least severely restricted.

Where it gets tricky is the solvency and trade-law side of things. If you intend to run this case, it would be a good idea to read up on Taylor’s discussion of the Pelly amendment and surrounding legal precedent. (It’s pretty complicated, so I didn’t cut cards on it here.) Ideally, you should be familiar with (a) what the Pelly amendment stipulates; (b) what “international fishery conservation programs” you could justify it under; and (c) the various WTO requirements established by the Shrimp-Turtle ruling.

Fortunately, it’s unlikely that many Negatives will plunge the labyrinthine depths of WTO case law deeply enough for this to become a major issue, and if you hit something you’re not prepared for, you can always just respond with “well, we have legal experts saying it works!” (That might be a better response anyway, because the moment you start talking about GATT and Shrimp-Turtle and the WTO appeals process, your judge’s eyes will probably glaze over. Unless they’re a law student, of course.)

You’ll probably want to cut more specific cards for the advocacy; most of the ones here are pretty general and don’t explain exactly what Taylor is proposing.

Also, remember that the point of trade sanctions isn’t actually to stop importing stuff; it’s to force the exporters to change. So if the Negative is like, “oh noes! stopping imports and would devastate the economy!” – that’s the whole point. The exporters can’t afford it either, so they’ll just stop trawling, and it will never get to that point. It’s worked in the past (see below.)

(Tip: If you want another weird advantage, you might research how trawling can damage undersea communication cables. In the past, dragging ship’s anchors have briefy cut entire countries off from the internet.)

INHERENCY

UN resolution not implemented widely, delays risk major damage (2013)

Prof. Heather Koldewey (PhD, section head of global programmes at the Zoological Society of London, adjunct professor at the Fisheries Centre of the University of British Columbia), Prof. Nicholas K. Dulvy (PhD, professor and Canada research chair in marine biodiversity and conservation at Simon Fraser University), Liane Veitch (marine policy officer at the Zoological Society of London), and five other marine conservation experts, June 15, 2012, Science magazine, “Avoiding Empty Ocean Commitments at Rio+20”, Vol. 336, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/Science-2012-Veitch-et-al.pdf (page 1384)

However, there is some good news. For example, a campaign for a global mora- torium on high-seas bottom trawl fishing, which can destroy fragile habitats and deplete slow-growing and long-lived species that are highly vulnerable to overexploitation achieved a UN resolution in 2006 to ban the method in sensitive sea-bed areas by 2008. Although promising, this resolution has yet to be implemented widely and the future trajectory of high-seas protection remains unclear. Unless implementation improves, ocean biodiversity risks enduring an extended phase of marine population crashes and species extinctions that has already begun.

HARMS

Most destructive thing we do to the ocean; must reduce impact

Dr. Elliot Norse (PhD, chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute) and Prof. Les Watling (PhD, professor of zoology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa), February 20, 2008, quoted in ScienceDaily, “Bottom Trawling Impacts On Ocean, Clearly Visible From Space”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080215121207.htm

Bottom trawling is the most destructive of any actions that humans conduct in the ocean,” said Dr. Watling. “Ten years ago, Elliott Norse and I calculated that, each year, worldwide, bottom trawlers drag an area equivalent to twice the lower 48 states. Most of that trawling happens in deep waters, out of sight. But now we can more clearly envision what trawling impacts down there by looking at the sediment plumes that are shallow enough for us to see from satellites,” he said.

[later, in the same context:]

For years marine scientists have been telling the world that fishing has harmed marine biodiversity more than anything else,” said Dr. Norse. “And it’s clear that trawling causes more damage to marine ecosystems than any other kind of fishing. Now, as the threats of ocean acidification and melting sea ice are adding insult to injury, we have to reduce harm from trawling to have any hope of saving marine ecosystems,” Dr. Norse said.

Most harmful method of fishing

Dr. Sara Maxwell (PhD, research fellow at the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), Prof. Richard Haedrich (PhD, professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland), Prof. Alex Rogers (PhD, professor of conservation biology at Oxford, leads the Core Programme on Biodiversity at the British Antarctic Survey), Dr. Lance Morgan (PhD in ecology, president of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), and Dr. Elliot Norse (PhD, chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), June 2005, Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, “Why the world needs a time – out on high – seas bottom trawling”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/TimeOut_english.pdf

The huge bottom trawls are dragged across the seafloor to catch fish and shrimp that live in, on, or just above the bottom. Because more than 98 percent of marine animal species live in, on, or immediately above the seafloor, anything that causes significant harm to the seafloor profoundly damages the health of ocean ecosystems as a whole. Both logic and the large, and rapidly growing, number of scientific studies documenting trawling-impacts lead to the unmistakable conclusion that bottom trawling is the world’s most harmful method of fishing.

Damage lasts – even after trawling stops, recovery takes many decades (study)

Prof. Thomas Schlacher (PhD, associate professor of marine science at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland), Franzis Althaus (marine researcher with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia), and others, 2009, Marine Ecology Progress Series, “Impacts of bottom trawling on deep-coral ecosystems of seamounts are long-lasting”, Vol. 397, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.int-res.com/articles/theme/m397p279.pdf (page 279, 292)

Here we examine changes to stony corals and associated megabenthic assemblages on seamounts off Tasmania (Australia) with different histories of bottom-contact trawling by analysing 64,504 video frames (25 seamounts) and 704 high-resolution images (7 seamounts). Trawling had a dramatic impact on the seamount benthos: (1) bottom cover of the matrix-forming stony coral Solenosmilia variabilis was reduced by 2 orders of magnitude; (2) loss of coral habitat translated into 3-fold declines in richness, diversity and density of other megabenthos; and (3) megabenthos assemblage structures diverged widely between trawled and untrawled seamounts. On seamounts where trawling had been reduced to < 5% a decade ago and ceased completely 5 yr ago, there was no clear signal of recovery of the megabenthos; communities remained impoverished comprising fewer species at reduced densities.

[later, in the same context:]

Our observations and the slow growth of seamount fauna suggest that recovery of the seamount benthos will take many decades, if not longer.

Causes 95% of the damage to deep-water seamount ecosystems

United Nations General Assembly, July 14, 2006, “The Impacts of Fishing on Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.un.org/Depts/los/general_assembly/documents/impact_of_fishing.pdf (page 11)

While there is some evidence to suggest that bottom-set longlines, bottom-set gillnets, pots and traps (including when “ghost fishing”), all may be impacting the deep-sea, bottom trawling and dredging appear to be having the most obvious disruptive impact due to their widespread use and their contact with the bottom. Trawls and dredges remove organisms, rocks and sediments, reducing habitat complexity and on soft substrate stirs up sediment that can smother bottom-dwelling communities. In addition, bycatch of non-target species can be high. It is believed that about 95 percent of the damage inflicted on deep water systems associated with seamounts results from bottom-trawling.

Random bonus harm – devastating for archaeologists

Jo Marchant, January 25, 2012, Nature journal, “Underwater archaeology: Hunt for the ancient mariner”, accessed August 8, 2013, auvac.org/uploads/publication_pdf/Underwater archaeology_ Hunt for the ancient mariner _ Nature News %26 Comment.pdf

[Shelly] Wachsmann [an archeologist at Texas A&M] found that sedimentation was a problem even far from shore – up to a metre per millennium in some areas. This means that although some Greek and Roman remains might still be visible, a Minoan ship would be buried under 3 or 4 metres of sand. And even at 500-600 metres depth, he saw clear evidence of trawling. “It was almost like somebody had swept the sea in front of me,” he says. On the basis of his experiences, Wachsmann now believes that the chance of finding a Minoan equivalent of Ulu Burun “approaches zero”. The effect of bottom trawling is “devastating” for archaeologists, agrees Robert Ballard, an oceanographer based at the University of Rhode Island in Narragansett, who has pioneered deep-sea exploration and discovered the wreck of the Titanic in 1985. “Most of the Aegean has been destroyed,” he says.

SOLVENCY

Similar sanctions worked in the past

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 145)

Threats of import prohibitions and sanctions by the United States have played a role in enforcing environmental agreements in the past. In 1989 and 1991, the United States threatened sanctions against Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea for using large-scale pelagic driftnets on the high seas in violation of the High Seas Driftnet Fisheries Enforcement Act, a U.S. fishery law. These threats helped equip unenforceable UN General Assembly Resolution 44/225 with economic teeth and coerce those nations in to abandoning the practice. In 1991, after the United States threatened import prohibitions on Japanese products in response to Japan’s trade in endangered sea turtles, Japan agreed to limit its imports of the turtles in 1991 and end all trade by the end of 1992.

WTO allows environmental trade sanctions

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 156)

Many consider the Shrimp-Turtle dispute, two highly charged World Trade Organization (WTO) Appellate Body (“Appellate Body”) cases in 1998 and 2001, to be the most important development in WTO policy regarding trade restrictions for fisheries violations. This trade dispute featured the United States, on the one hand, and India, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Thailand, on the other. The [WTO] Appellate Body ruled that international trade law, specifically Article XX of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (“Article XX”), allowed nations to utilize unilateral trade measures to conserve “exhaustible natural resources” if the trade measures follow certain guidelines.

DISADVANTAGE RESPONSES

General: Not worth it, must be stopped immediately

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 133)

Considering the minimal value that deep-sea bottom trawling contributes to the overall value of global marine fisheries catches and the substantial subsidies needed to support it, the industry is not economically sustainable from a global perspective. Further accounting for the vast ecological consequences, including the total devastation of unique, unexplored ecosystems and irreparable loss of biodiversity, leads to the conclusion that this practice must be stopped immediately.

A/T “economic harm”: Trawling creates <0.5% of revenue, only exists because of subsidies

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 133)

In 2001, deep-sea bottom trawling accounted for only 0.38- 0.43% of the approximately US$74 billion worldwide fisheries catch value. Of the roughly three million marine fishing vessels operating worldwide, the 285 deep-sea bottom trawling vessels make up an extremely small percentage. In fact, considering the minimal contribution this fishing practice makes to each country’s overall fishing income, deep-sea bottom trawling only survives as an industry because of the massive government subsidies that cover fuel and other fishing vessel costs.

A/T “essential food source”: Luxury items, not essential

Charles R. Taylor (JD candidate at the University of Hawaii), 2010, Environs Environmental Law and Policy Journal, “Fishing with a Bulldozer: Options for Unilateral Action by the United States under Domestic and International Law to Halt Destructive Bottom Trawling Practices on the High Seas”, Vol. 34, No. 1, accessed August 8, 2013, environs.law.ucdavis.edu/issues/34/1/taylor.pdf (page 133)

Some people support ecologically destructive fishing practices because of the valuable protein that fish provide to developing nations’ coastal populations. In the case of deep-sea bottom trawling, however, this argument is without merit. Fish caught by deep-sea bottom trawlers tend to be luxury goods, and the major markets for deep-sea bottom trawlers are Japan, the United States, and the European Union – hardly places where essential animal protein is in short supply.

A/T “essential food source”: Sold to rich countries, “no major social impact”

Dr. Sara Maxwell (PhD, research fellow at the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), Prof. Richard Haedrich (PhD, professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland), Prof. Alex Rogers (PhD, professor of conservation biology at Oxford, leads the Core Programme on Biodiversity at the British Antarctic Survey), Dr. Lance Morgan (PhD in ecology, president of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), and Dr. Elliot Norse (PhD, chief scientist of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute), June 2005, Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, “Why the world needs a time – out on high – seas bottom trawling”, accessed August 8, 2013, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/TimeOut_english.pdf

Significantly, the majority of the high-seas bottom-trawl catch is destined for markets in the most affluent nations, namely the USA, Europe, and Japan, negating claims that HSBT contributes to global food security. HSBT fishing is a boutique fishery, temporarily benefiting only wealthy nations and wealthy consumers while tr ashing the global environment for a very long time (decades to centuries). Restrictions on these fisheries will have no major social impact but will have very important environmental benefits.

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One Response to ‘Case of the Week’ 4 (Stoa): Bottom Trawling

  1. What are some arguments that the Negative team can use? Thanks!

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