The population of commercially important fish have declined by a little over 4 percent, while catches have fallen by about a third in some regions since the early 1900sNew York: As oceans get warmer, fish populations are falling markedly and are expected to plunge further, risking an important source of food and income for people worldwide, a new research said. The population of commercially important fish shrank by a little over 4 percent, while catches have fallen by about a third in some regions since the early 1900s, the study found.
“That 4 percent decline sounds small, but it’s 1.4 million metric tonnes of fish from 1930 to 2010,” said Chris Free, lead author of the study, which appears in the journal Science.
Effects of global warming
According to scientists, global warming will pressure food supplies around the world in the coming decades. By separating the effects of warming waters from factors such as overfishing, the study suggests that climate change has already started taking its toll on seafood.
Fish populations in East Asia hit the most
Over the 80-year period of the study from 1930 to 2010, fish populations dropped by around 35 percent in the northeast Atlantic Ocean and the Sea of Japan. “The ecosystems in east Asia have seen some of the largest decline in fisheries productivity,” Free said. “And that region is home to some of the largest-growing human populations and populations that are dependent on seafood.”
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