A fascinating look at how climate change affects the lobster industry

Originally published at: A fascinating look at how climate change affects the lobster industry | Boing Boing


Lobsters prefer non-hot water, I’m with them on that.


I remember when I was a kid, fishing off the coast of Maine was in decline from over-fishing, and a lot of fishermen chafed at rules regarding limits, both for lobsters and cod.

It’s been a while since I watched 60 Minutes, but this was on last week-- climate change is weirdly changing the wine industry in both France and the UK.



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Excellent write up. And thanks for also mentioning the whale issue.

I haven’t read the articles yet, but follow the broader story in the local paper and radio. I wonder if the linked articles make mention of the declining shrimp fishery (season just cancelled for next three years, and has been cancelled for, I want to say, at least 5 so far), and the “something else” that’s going on in Casco Bay. It’s not just water getting warmer. I think it’s acidifying, too, or some chemical alteration. It’s affecting mollusks.
As an aside, fun fact about lobster fisherman who rake in mega bucks. Because of the seasonal nature of their work, many if not most of them apply for and receive unemployment benefits during the off seasons.


They mention the shrimp briefly, and the acidification issues and some other stuff going on. But don’t dig into any of it much.

For articles purportedly about Climate Change and fisheries they do very little digging into either. It’s much more of a human interest/community profile angle. Very hung up on the economics in the area, and purported doom coming from government regulation.

They don’t mention any other factors in either the collapse in the Long Island Sound (not even identifying it as the Sound it’s just “Connecticut”) besides climate. Or any of the other reasons that Maine and Canada’s fisheries have been booming.

The big one on both being fisheries management. Further south we did a real bad job on that, still allowing fisherman to take female lobsters. Capping and controlling size poorly. Where as Maine and Canada absolutely do not allow any females to be sold, and have much better size controls and quota systems.

They briefly mention the disease out breaks that tanked the Sound fishery, but only as a warming water problem that might happen in Maine. And the issue isn’t as simple as they let on.

They mostly focus on the lobster having moved North, and the fact that they’re continuing to do so. But there’s a lot more going on here.


One day Scotland may become known more for its wines than its whiskys.


I’m not sure how I will feel about that.

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Thanks to years of inaction on global warming most of us will have to get used to doing without things we used to take for granted (or at least paying an even larger premium for them.). Future generations may regard lobster as we regard the passenger pigeon.


And, feeling a bit pessimistic right now, I think your take on it is maybe the brightest viewpoint we can hope for. I watched “Don’t Look Up” last night, a comedy/satire about a comet heading to earth that will destroy everything, and the parallels with our current global actions on this real, looming threat were depressing AF.
I’m not giving up, or anything, none of us should, but…

Frustrated Jason Segel GIF by NETFLIX


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