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We would like to let you know about an inspirational man who came to our attention this morning. In Senegal, Haidar el Ali is fighting for the preservation of mangroves (among many other things related to protecting the ocean’s resources), which are crucial to the reproduction of marine species. The key of his success has been connecting with and educating people on the danger of overfishing and the steps they can take to make a real difference.

Those trying to lessen their impact on the environment know how hard it is to keep track of what seafood is sustainable. Not only do you have to take into account the state of the fish stock, but you have to consider mercury levels and the carbon footprint of getting it to your plate. For many, the easiest solution has been to rely on organizations like the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), to tell them what they should and shouldn’t eat.

In the past few weeks however, MSC has come under fire for not living up to its purpose.

Many things happened before we started to measure oil and before my last entry in this blog. The last time we were in Gulfport, almost two weeks ago, we were paid a visit by some Oceana friends who wanted to support our expedition with their presence. Morgan Freeman, Ted Danson and top model Almudena Fernandez came on board to help us spread our message and explain our work to the U.S. press. The mayor of one of the most important cities in Belize, a coastal city threatened by the offshore oil industry, also came on board.

While marine pollution poses serious long-term threats to the Baltic Sea, the most acute threat to its ecosystem is short-sighted industrial-scale commercial fishing practices. Their destructive impact is magnified by the systematic failure of the Baltic coastal governments to vigorously enforce existing laws and regulations on catch limits, by catch control, and habitat preservation.  

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