You probably don’t give it much thought but everytime you breathe in, The Ocean is responsible for every second breath we take. We have become self-absorbed in our cities, consuming resources without really understanding the tragedy of the commons.
Thousands of years ago, indigenous peoples of Polynesia looked to find ways to protect their fish stocks. In one place that I was able to visit in Fiji. A small island called Totoya, boasts the first Tambu or as we would say “Taboo”. This site was protected not because the fish were low, rather something tragic happened here. When the acting chief at the time made the decision to keep people out, they found out a few years later that the fish realized this was their safe zone and their numbers abounded. So much so, the rest of the fishing area was full of fish.
As we grow in our cities, so does our demand for food security. At the present moment, the demand for Blue Fin Tuna has never been higher. 97% have been eradicated within the last 10 years. Let’s face it, its a delicious fish. Combined with the fact a Blue Fin in Asia sold for 1.7 million dollars. You could understand why a fisherman would want to set his or her sights on these fish.
Speaking at the UN with two of my great friends. Aunofo Havea and Susi Mai during World Oceans Day. The idea was to drive home that we need to research our past before we plan for the future.
I along with a few of my friends developed a technology that not only will give us a better glimpse into how we are doing. It is a system that will help protect marine environments from poachers and other threats.
It is important that we all realize that each of us can do something. In the end, its possible it may not be enough but I’m not one that believes in giving up.