Dynamite fishing is a way for some Tanzanians to make money, but at what cost?
According to marine biologists, the practice of dynamite fishing is having a significant negative effect on the underwater environment, but the fisherman lack adequate equipment to use different fishing methods and fishing is their livelihood.
The video below is a BBC News report from 2014, showing that blast fishing is as still prevalent today as it was two years ago.
Tanzania is far from the only country where dynamite fishing is practiced. It’s just the place where it’s practiced on the largest scale. If anything the technique seems to be growing in popularity. As Jason Rubens mentioned in the video “for the last five years it’s at least as bad or worse than it’s ever been.”
Not only is dynamite fishing impacting the local marine environment, it’s continued practice could effect the area’s tourist economy, which makes up 17 percent of the country’s gross domestic product.
It’s important to keep in mind that the fisherman using explosions instead of other fishing methods are just trying to earn a living. The North American model of game and fish management was only adopted after we nearly wiped out many of our own fish and game resources.
The solution to the problem isn’t blaming the fishermen, but educating them on why they should stop dynamite fishing.