|Born||1955 (age 61â€“62)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Occupation||Author, Endowed Professor at Stony Brook University, founder of SafinaCenter.org|
|Alma mater||B.A. State University of New York at Purchase
M.S. Rutgers University
Ph.D. Rutgers University
|Notable works||Song for the Blue Ocean
Eye of the Albatross
Voyage of the Turtle
Nina Delmar and the Great Whale Rescue
The View from Lazy Point
A Sea in Flames
|Notable awards||Guggenheim Fellowship
George B. Rabb Conservation Medal
John Burroughs Writers Awards
MacArthur Fellows Program
Shapiro Conservation Award
From the happy-go-lucky days of oil exploration and drilling, when a lot of easy sources were being found and easily managed, we're gotten ourselves into this sort of apocalyptic time. We're willing to destroy almost everything, risk almost anything, and go ahead with techniques for which we have no way of responding to the known problems.
If you ask the fish whether they'd rather have an oil spill or a season of fishing, I wouldn't be surprised if they'd vote for another blowout.
Why would even I say we can't stop drilling in the Gulf? Because we have no alternatives. Whether or not we drill in the Gulf, or in Alaska, we will continue to wring the last out of anyplace else.
When I was in high school in the early 1970s, we knew we were running out of oil; we knew that easy sources were being capped; we knew that diversifying would be much better; we knew that there were terrible dictators and horrible governments that we were enriching who hated us. We knew all that and we did really nothing.
If you want to make change, 'Show me how' can be a stronger, more effective approach than 'Just say no.' That's what I think.
As a teenage fisherman, I watched and followed terns to find fish. Later, I studied terns for my Ph.D.
BP had a lease to drill. They did not have a lease to pollute the Gulf of Mexico. They did not have a lease to blow oil into the environment. They did not have a lease to disperse the oil and try to hide the body. They don't have a lease to clean up.
Several groups have information evaluating seafood sustainability. I wrote the first such guide, and seafood pocket-guides and detailed evaluations of different seafoods are available for download from the group I founded, Blue Ocean Institute.
Many people believe the whole catastrophe is the oil we spill, but that gets diluted and eventually disarmed over time. In fact, the oil we don't spill, the oil we collect, refine and use, produces CO2 and other gases that don't get diluted.
If you're overfishing at the top of the food chain, and acidifying the ocean at the bottom, you're creating a squeeze that could conceivably collapse the whole system.