Over-fishing in Chile spawns debate about quotas


Battered by El Niño, Chile’s $2-billion export fishing industry has posted sorry catch numbers the past few seasons, largely due to the ocean-current phenomenon. Yet ecologists warn of bigger problems that won’t go away with a change in the weather. Over-investment in large fleets, docks and processing plants has allowed a growing domestic industry to push fish stocks to the brink, triggering ban after ban by government officials trying to aid struggling species. For its part, Chile’s fishing industry is pushing for a different approach: legislation that would create a quota system and consolidate the fleet. Conservationists complain the plan leaves big loopholes for continued abuse. But industry leaders counter that the bans used currently force over-investment by putting a premium... [Log in to read more]

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