Posts by:

Arunima Shukla

Arunima Shukla

Research Assistant

Center for a Livable Future

Seafood Imports, Marine Mammals, and Open Ocean Aquaculture

2014-320px-New_Zealand_Sea_LionFor those of you who love seafood and have a soft spot for marine animals (for example, sea lions), there are a few major issues to keep in mind as the U.S. aquaculture industry is poised to expand.

First, most seafood consumed in the U.S. (91 percent!) is imported from other countries, many of which have much less stringent standards for environmental protection. Second, there is a limited supply of wild-caught seafood, as wild fisheries are at capacity or in decline, and they cannot keep up with the growing demand for seafood. And finally, as a result of this trouble with fisheries, Read More >

WWF’s Farmed Salmon Certification Initiative: Positive Steps or Greenwashing?

Salmon farm in a fjord, Norway

Salmon farm in a fjord, Norway

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has launched a new campaign relating to salmon aquaculture—but if the organization is partnering with corporations, how successful will it really be? WWF’s partnerships with various corporations to foster sustainable agriculture and aquaculture practices are part of an effort they call “market transformation.” Some feel that partnering with corporations is the best approach to bring about modest (but real) change, while others condemn such initiatives as a form of greenwashing. WWF’s efforts regarding sustainable logging and palm-oil production have been criticized as being ineffective and even harmful. Read More >

Keeping Baltimore on Track with Sewer Upgrades

jones-falls-waste

Sewage discharge from stormwater outfall

If you catch an unpleasant whiff near the Baltimore Inner Harbor or notice a suspicious looking object floating around, you may be having a close encounter with raw untreated sewage that routinely makes its way into our neighborhoods and waterways.

In 2002, a lawsuit pertaining to illegal discharges of raw sewage from the Baltimore wastewater collection system led to a settlement, called a consent decree, in which the City agreed to complete extensive sewer upgrades (and other construction work related to sewage discharges) by 2016. Read More >

What Would Rachel Carson Do?

rachel-carson-houseA recent incident that occurred in the house I used to occupy would have Rachel Carson turning over in her grave.

When I moved to Baltimore last September, I was pleased with myself for finding a room in a house in lovely Oakenshawe, just a few blocks east of JHU’s Homewood Campus: tree-lined streets, well-tended yards, and a short walk to my classes. It was truly idyllic. I even lucked out with my terrific and brilliant roommates—a Chilean astrophysicist, an Indonesian biologist, an aspiring epidemiologist from Croatia, and a transplanted Minnesotan working at a neuroscience lab. How could my living situation get any better? I found out that Rachel Carson lived in the house when she was a grad student at Hopkins.

It turns out that Rachel Carson Read More >

A Milestone: Worldwide Aquaculture Output Surpasses Beef

seafood fillets

Seafood demand will soon outstrip supply in wild fisheries

According to a recent report by the Earth Policy Institute, global aquaculture production overtook beef production in 2011. Production of farmed seafood reached 66 million tons in 2012—three million tons more than beef.

It’s not just beef production that is being overtaken; it is projected that aquaculture yields will exceed edible seafood from wild fisheries in the next couple of years. This trend is not surprising, as most wild fishery stocks are either fully exploited or overexploited and cannot meet the rapidly rising global demand for seafood. Read More >