The FDA is going through the process of consultations and public meetings to ascertain if a newly developed strain of genetically modified salmon is suitable for human consumption. There are also reports from Europe on the success of breeding the endangered bluefin tuna. The first news was greeted by the usual scary warnings about “fish-zilla” and “frankenfish” while the second has been termed abhorrent because we are breeding the fish merely to satisfy our own greed. Let us set aside for the time being the question of the safety or viability of either technique and consider a very simple issue: the arrogance of a species that seeks to reorganize the planet to fit its own needs. We have eaten the bluefin to extinction and are reviving them to satisfy our appetites and we are trying to re-engineer the salmon so it grows faster to keep up with our demands. What if we thought instead about what we could be doing with humans? How about moderating our behavior instead? Instead of farming salmon fed on corn, we could we eat less fish and more plants. Or instead of finding spending huge amounts of money trying to breed a species solely to consume them, lets spend instead on creating awareness of the need to stop overpopulating the planet.
This is not fear mongering, we are on a slippery slope of no return so why is there no will to do what is needed? Because, sadly, a sustainable planet is the ultimate public good. We would all like it, no one wants to perish , but we figure there are plenty of others to make the sacrifices, the outcome will not depend on the actions of a single individual so we take the easy path out. So, very few people actually do the right thing and the possibility of a negative outcome grows. These are hard times, we say, give me a break. A break, a bargain, call it what you will, just inches up the price of a sustainable future for our children just that much higher and pulls it that extra distance away from our empty hands.
Think twice before you act and share your concerns with others, remember we need to get everyone to act responsibly.This is a huge task and its going to take a planet to do it.