James Blunt is best known as a singer, but he’s also an outspoken advocate for ocean conservation. Blunt sat down with Jim Edwards, editor-in-chief of Business Insider UK, to discuss why he’s campaigning for sustainable fishing and why he is a spokesperson for the Blue Marine Foundation.
Following is a transcript of the video:
James Blunt: 90% of the larger fish in the ocean are gone. We’ve taken them through overfishing, unsustainable overfishing.
Jim Edwards: You’re known as a singer obviously, and a surprisingly dangerous and funny presence on Twitter. But you’re less well known for your interest in fish, how did you first become interested in ocean conservation?
James Blunt: My father was based in Cyprus, he was in the army and so I grew up on and in the Mediterranean. I live in Ibiza now and have done for 14 years and I call it my home, and as such, I can really see the changes that have happened there over my lifetime. I think anyone who goes on holiday in the Mediterranean will ask the same question as me when you jump in the water, which is where are the fish? I mean there are so few now compared to when I was a child I think people really recognize that plastics are a problem, we go into our supermarkets now and I hope that we’re all more aware that by purchasing goods covered in plastics it will end up with them being in the ocean. But I think people have realised that is just the tip of the iceberg of the problem. The problem is not just plastics, but climate and also our huge amount of overfishing in an unsustainable manner.
Jim Edwards: What is the single worst thing that’s happening in the sea right now?
James Blunt: I don’t think you have to look very far, in Dogger Bank which you will have heard about from the weather reports. Dogger Bank is where we’re supposed to have one of Europe’s largest marine conservation areas and instead what’s going on there is this remarkable thing, this terrible thing called pulse fishing, where they literally send a pulse down into the seabed. In doing so that snaps the spines of larger fish, kills up to a quarter of the young cod and indiscriminately kills all marine life on the seabed, in the mud and is destroying an ecosystem.
Jim Edwards: So they’re literally just electrocuting the sea?
James Blunt: Absolutely and it sounds as bad as it is.
Jim Edwards: So who’s at fault for all this, who’s doing this type of fishing?
James Blunt: Well I think we’re not talking about small fishing boats in the English Channel, we’re talking about large-scale industrial fishing which is literally going with enormous great nets and taking everything they can out of the ocean.
Jim Edwards: So shouldn’t we just eat less fish?
James Blunt: Well I think if we continue to in the way that we have there simply won’t be any fish at the end of it but I think the answer for us is to question where our fish is coming from and ask, is it from sustainable sources, is it locally-sourced?
Jim Edwards: So, who’s standing in the way of this?
James Blunt: I don’t think anyone’s standing in the way of it, it’s just about action or inaction. Sometimes we can be focused on other things we just need to focus our minds and focus our pressure on ourselves, on business, on governments to act on this.
Find out more: https://www.bluemarinefoundation.com/
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Why James Blunt Is Campaigning For Sustainable Fishing