ANTH 469A | ENVIR 495F

Ecology, Economy, and Politics of Resource-Extraction Ecosystems

Spring Quarter 2014
Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:30-10:50, MEB 235
Field trips Saturdays April 19, May 3, and May 31

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Readings for Week 5, Fisheries and local Aquaculture

Tuesday, April 29

Aquaculture, or raising animal and plant resources in fresh or salt water, has become a controversial topic because of its relation to food, ecology, and economy. We begin by reading two diametrically opposed popular assessments of the proper role of aquaculture, a very positive one by development guru Jeffrey Sachs, and a very negative one by Brad Stein in TIME.

Then go on to the massive report, the Food and Agriculture Organization's 2012 SOFIA (State of Fisheries and Aquaculture) report. You should read the introductory section (it's a lot of pages, but full of charts and graphs), pages 3-89, and then by midnight on Monday, April 28, please post 200-300 words on the topic of whether you think increasing fish consumption, from capture fisheries or aquaculture, or both, is a viable part of a world food strategy for the coming decades.

In addition we will have one volunteer each (since these are short) make brief presentations that mention questions raised by specific sections of the report dealing with particular issues; in each case be sure to stress the controversies and the main positions held by the disputants:
  • Marine Protected areas, pages 164-171
  • Demand and supply of aquafeed and feed ingredients, pages 172-181
  • Global guidelines on ecolabelling, pages 181-86
In class, we will have the very brief presentations, and then discuss a whole series of issues that connect fisheries and aquaculture to issues of scale in particular.

Thursday, May 1

Today we will have a guest lecturer, Dr. Joth Davis, an affiliate faculty member in the School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences at the UW, and chief biologist for the Taylor Shellfish Company, who will also be our guide and mentor on the May 3 field trip.

Dr. Davis will lecture on issues of shellfish biology relevant to the culture of clams, mussels, oysters, and geoducks in Puget Sound, including the issue of carrying capacity, which you should read about in Christopher McKindsey et al.'s article on Carrying capacity models and shellfish culture. He would also like you to have read his own chapter in the book Shellfish Aquaculture and the Environment. In addition, he will also answer questions regarding the Executive Summary of the North Totten Inlet Mussel Culture Environmental Impact Statement which you should read and post two questions about before midnight on Wednesday, April 30. This should mean we will all be super-prepared for the Saturday, May 3 field trip.