The "see food disappear" diet
Fish, seafood 'will disappear by 2048'
If current global trends continued, the loss of fish and seafood would threaten human food supplies and the environment, according to the most exhaustive study to date on the subject, published in the November 3 issue of the US journal Science.
"Our analyses suggest that business as usual would foreshadow serious threats to global food security, coastal water quality, and ecosystem stability, affecting current and future generations,'' the international team of ecologists and economists wrote in Impact of Biodiversity Loss on Ocean Ecosystem Services.
The four-year analysis was the first to study all existing data on ocean species and ecosystems and put them together to understand the importance of biodiversity at the global scale.
"Whether we looked at tide pools or studies over the entire world's ocean, we saw the same picture emerging," said lead author Boris Worm of Dalhousie University, in Canada, said.
"In losing species we lose the productivity and stability of entire ecosystems. I was shocked and disturbed by how consistent these trends are - beyond anything we expected."
At this point, 29 of currently fished species were considered "collapsed'' in 2003, that is, their catches have declined by 90 per cent or more, he said.
"It is a very clear trend, and it is accelerating," he said.