A new study shows that sharks, tuna, and mackerel are the key to saving the planet, as scientists say that the big fish are a carbon sink, which helps store greenhouse gases at the ocean floor, and also regulates the amount that remains in the atmosphere by absorbing huge amounts of emissions Globalism.
An international team showed that leaving more of these fish in the sea will curb the phenomenon of global warming. When a fish dies in the ocean, it sinks to the sea floor, capturing all the carbon it contains, while the natural phenomenon – called a “blue carbon pump” – is increasingly disrupted due to Hunting, which has been overlooked – until now.
“When a fish is caught, the carbon it partially contains is released into the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide after a few days or weeks,” said lead author Gael Mariani, a doctoral student at the University of Montpellier in France.
The study found, the first of its kind, that ocean fisheries have released at least 730 million metric tons of carbon dioxide since 1950, with an estimated 20.4 metric tons discharged in 2014 alone, equivalent to annual emissions of 4.5 million. Car.
Said co-author Professor David Moylo David Mouillot Their carbon footprint is 25 percent higher than previous estimates, and bluefin tuna also stores greenhouse gases in the ocean.
“Fishing boats produce greenhouse gases by consuming fuel, and we now know that extracting fish releases additional carbon dioxide that would otherwise remain captive in the ocean,” Moylu added. “Large fish such as tuna, sharks, mackerel and swordfish contain about 10 to 15” Percent of carbon. “
Professor Moylo, a coral reef expert at James Cook University in Queensland, explained: “When these fish die, they sink rapidly. As a result, most of the carbon they contain is sequestered to the sea floor for thousands or even millions of years. They are thus carbon pools whose size has not been estimated. From before”.
The oceans face unprecedented threats from man-made climate change and overfishing, and this groundbreaking discovery published in Science Advances Another reason to protect them, and specific areas that can be left alone – where fishing is not economically profitable – include the Central Pacific, South Atlantic and Northern Indian Oceans.
While Mariani said: “Fishing boats sometimes go to very remote areas – with enormous consumption of fuel – although the fish caught in these areas are not profitable and fishing is not viable except with the help of subsidies.”
The researchers called for more reasonable and thoughtful fishing practices, and in light of their analysis, Mariani said: “The elimination of the blue carbon pump represented by the big fish indicates the need for new protection and management measures to be put in place, so that more of them can remain as a carbon sink and no longer be an additional source of carbon dioxide. And by doing so, we further reduce carbon dioxide emissions by burning less fuel, and coral sharks swim to the ocean floor with other smaller fish. “
Turtles, sea birds, and mammals such as whales and dolphins also play a vital role in sequestering carbon, and forests and wetlands can capture and store large amounts of carbon, and these ecosystems have been included in the strategies that 28 countries pledged to adopt to fulfill the Paris climate agreement.
The researchers want a similar policy created for the oceans – the largest carbon sink on Earth and a central component of our planet’s climate cycle. “We need to fish better,” Professor Moylo added.
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