Tilbage til forsiden

Billederne er ikke en illustration fra Carsten Jensens bog: ”Vi  - de druknede”, men fra den rettergang med ”gå planken ud-metoden”, som anvendtes i forbindelse med afstraffelsen af fødevareminister Hans Christian Skidt, transport- og CO2- minister Flemming Hansen og forureningsfinansieringsminister Thor Pedersen. De havde alle tre gjort sig skyldige i alvorlige forbrydelser mod menneskeheden ved undladelsessynder

Sea and climate – change the course (speech app. 20 minutes)

The purpose of the Danish Society for a Living Sea.

-         to preserve biodiversity

-         to support a nature friendly fishery

-         a nature friendly fishery is almost only pursued by coastal fishermen

The Danish Society for a Living Sea has as its purpose and task to protect the life of the sea.
We will fight the degrading of the biodiversity in the sea.
Our purpose is also to support an ecologically sustainable fishery.

From that follows, that we show solidarity with the fishermen who fish responsibly in harmony with nature. In Denmark there is only a few of this kind of fishermen left. We almost only find such fishermen in coastal fishery. Coastal fishery is very widespread in the third world. This is under stronger and stronger pressure from the fishing fleet, from the rich countries. Anyway, the worst perspectives for these coastal fisheries arise from the expected climate changes.  

Living Sea considers the fishermen who fish in a nature friendly manner to be part of nature.

Living Sea is an environmental organisation (a small one), which at timers disagrees with the big environmental organisations, so as World Wildlife Foundation, Greenpeace and the associations of nature conservation, because Living Sea includes the responsible fisherman as a part of nature. The Society is characterized by the membership of contemporary and former fishing skippers. We cannot at all accept the public opinion that fishermen as ONE group is responsible for the over-exploitation of the resources of the sea and the destruction of nature under water. 

A current example is a conflict with WWF.
The conflict is between “a resource management perspective” and “a fisherman behaviour perspective”.
WWF wants to introduce the MSC eco-labelling. The MSC is Marine Stewardship Council, an organisation founded by Unilever and WWF. At the same time WWF has released a consumer guide in Sweden, a guide to help consumers to shop fish from sustainable fisheries. WWF in Denmark will release their guide this year in August. The guide recommends consumers to avoid, shopping codfish caught in the North Sea, because this stock is overexploited. The guide instead recommends consumers to buy Pollack from the waters around Alaska. Alaskan Pollack may be caught also by trawlers using huge iron shovels and heavy fishing gear. This a fishing method which under no circumstance is sustainable.

Although the North Sea cod stock in general is over-exploited, the reality is that in the north eastern part of the North Sea, outside North West Jutland, there is an abundance of codfish. Daily each big vessel catches hundreds of boxes of codfish, with 40-50 kilos per box, unintentionally, and discards them. When I ask representatives from WWF, if it is their real opinion that a fisherman who uses nature friendly fishing gear and has a legal quota of codfish, should abstain from catching his quota, the answer is “Yes”. This means that his quota by all probability will be caught by vessels using more destructive fishing gear by the end of the year. When I explain that to WWF, they still claim that consumers should not buy codfish from the North Sea, even though the codfish are caught by fishermen using nature friendly fishing gear. I have to ask: “Where is the solidarity with fishermen – fishermen with respect for the law - who try to stay responsible to nature. It is a very difficult problem.

Off course we in Living Sea believe that a fishing skipper in principle should only go out fishing on fish stocks, which are in good conditions and sustainable, but in practical life it must be the government and the administration together with international organisations, which can make the borders for the fishery.

And when I after that dialogue ask: “Why is the fuel consumption in relation to the catch not taken in as a parameter in this Eco labelling, in a situation with the great threat from the climate changes?”, then the answer is, that you should not mix the climate problems with the consumer’s choice of fish. The energy problem has to wait, the people from WWF believe. Our opinion in Living Sea is that such an approach is the same as giving up on environmental politics altogether! We find that this unserious attitude helps the brutal fishery and harms the sustainable coastal fishery. We know that the fuel consumption in the fishery is increasing. We know that the fishing vessels are going to be bigger and bigger. We know that bigger engine power, more destruction of nature on the seabed simultaneously means less economy left to the small and poor coastal societies around the world. 

Climate changes: The rich world’s present to the poor in the 3. World.
The first time I heard about “the green house effect” was 1969. I remember that I was chocked. I was thinking very much of that in the following years. Naturally the shock was temporarily more in the background, because of daily family life and fishing in Kattegat and The North Sea. But I can tell you that in the last 10 years, this information, which I heard for the first time in the end of the sixties has been a daily and increasing anxiety. Now everybody is able to see that what was considered merely as theories for many years is now already reality.

The coastal fisherman is not able to move after the fish. That goes for the Nordic countries, as well as for the poor coastal societies all over the world. Fishing villages will be flooded, stocks will move and worst of all: all coral reefs will be bleached down in the same way as the microscopic lime animals, who are extremely important as basic component of the marine food-chain, will disappear. We are talking about an incomprehensible catastrophe. The dimensions of that catastrophe will go beyond the world wars. And it is we in the industrialized world who are responsible! 

The political leaders are the responsible to change the course!
Of course at the beginning of industrialism and a long time forward, all these consequences for the world were not possible to take into consideration. But since knowledge has become available, all of us living in the rich countries are fundamentally responsible. Naturally the political leaders, who are elected, have the most responsibility. They are elected for the leadership in the societies. But we have elected them. I feel rather sure that our grandchildren and the survivors on the same age in the poor parts of the world are going to judge us harshly as responsible, if we fail to act in time.

Some of the most dramatic consequences that are actually discussed seriously among scientists are so devastating that we need to look for some of the worst failures of human kind to find comparisons. If we don’t act to prevent such consequences, it can be compared to the failure to prevent the tragic outcome of the world wars of the past century. Maybe you will not like this comparison, but isn’t the reaction the same? We duck our heads and hope that it all passes without our involvement. 

When the liner, Copenhagen – Oslo, went on the rocks of Kullen.
I think that all of you know the story from the sixties, when the helmsman again and again said to the officer on watch, that the big liner was going to run aground if the officer kept on course and speed. But the officer did not care for any objections from an inferior sailor. The helmsman followed the order. With great harm the passenger ship entered the granite rocks of Kullen.

This story serves as an illustration of what we are now confronting. Many – laymen and scientists – cry about, that our world is on a course for catastrophe, but the people we have elected to be on the helm do nothing serious to change the course.  They make speeches, and they travel to Greenland, but a real changing of the course is a less fashionable affair. We must be ready for a time to bring the ship and the crew into hard weather in order to round the point. The population of the rich world by far has the greatest share of the ownership of the ship, and therefore we must have the courage and drive to enter the unpleasant stormy sea in order to pass the point and save the world from the catastrophe. 

We members of Living Sea want during our campaign: “Sea and Climate – change the course!” to take part in a mutiny against the bad skippers of the world.
Courageously and to the best of our ability – but still humbly – we from our place in Living Sea will take part in the battle in order to convince as much as possible in our democratic society that something must happen – here and now! That is the best, we can do. We have now started a campaign, which will be both seriously informative and attentive in environmental policy, but also positive and full of hope. Because if we lose the belief that we are able to reduce the catastrophe through action, then we give ourselves up to that greedily self-satisfaction, which is so predominant in the rich countries. We will not be able to change the course, if we do not change our values. We in the rich world are forced to invent or reinvent simpler values of life – values, that we actual find in many costal fishery societies in the poor part of the world.  We have to acquire other ideas of happiness.  

The contents of the campaign:   
For good reasons, we in Living Sea do not speak about what should happen on the land. This task other organisations has to perform. We want to speak about, what happens on the sea. Our organisation, of course, does not involve all expertise, but we tell about the reliable information available. If some of the dark prognoses should not become reality as thousand of scientist and we naive members of Living Sea believe, then we all can be very happy.  But under no circumstances do we dare to take the chance to support the opinion that it will not be worth while to make a radical effort, to work hard, because it may be turn out so badly as expected. This attitude is too dangerous. Until now this attitude has been very bad for the work to prevent the climate changes.  

The core in the campaign of Living Sea is 4 themes:

1.      The forecast for the local sea environment round Denmark and the consequences.

2.      The prognoses for the global marine environment.

3.      The expected consequences for the coastal fishermen’s societies in the 3. World.

4.      How will the Danish fishery and the fishery of the industrialised countries develop, if the fishery should go on in a sustainable way in relation to the climate changes? What shall be banned in the actual development and how shall it be changed? At issue are solidarity and charity.

We in Living Sea demand that the climate changes and their possible prevention must be placed on the top of the political agenda.
That is not the actual situation. Just a few days ago, the Danish government has presented a new tax proposal. After a lot of Danish ministers have been in Ileuses in Greenland by the Ice firth together with world-famous political top leaders and they have promoted their interest in the climate problems, the Danish government presented a very, very weak proposal in relation to green taxes – and instead increased the perspective for private consumption, just as they continue to promote private transport.

We in Living Sea want to do our best to engage as mush as possible in the coastal fishermen’s growing problems now and into the future.
Firstly we will do it with our fishing vessel – now environment ship, the M/S Anton - as base.  We want it to be by fantasy and humour – but with seriousness as the background. 

We insist in our campaign: “Sea and Climate – change the course!” to keep the leaders of the society to their promises and responsibility.
The politicians shall not be able to stay in peace and quite. The climate problems and their prevention shall be placed on the top of the agenda. We will remind them again and again!

Thank you!

Hvordan går det med kampagnen?


Vi er i Levende Hav meget begejstrede over, at kampagnen er kommet i gang. Vi kom godt fra start med arrangementet i København og den efterfølgende tur til ”Brød og Fisk- dagene” i Lübæk var meget vellykkede. Det betyder antagelig, at kampagnen vil gæste flere Østersøhavne til næste år.

Nu ligger Anton i Grenå. Meningen var ellers, at Anton straks skulle have fortsat til Hirtshals. Her var formand Knud inviteret til at deltage og komme med et oplæg.

Desværre har Knud fået et fælt skinnebenssår, og læger og behjertede kvinde har forbudt ham at gøre andet end at sidde i en stol med benet oppe. Knud måtte derfor lade kutteren ligge og anvende jernbane. Oplæget kommer på hjemmesiden.

Det var meningen, at tilstedeværelsen i Hirtshals med Anton skulle have indledt en ”dialogture” om havmiljø og klimaændringer til forskellige fiskerihavne i Danmark.

Disse vil blive iværksat, så snart Knud er klar.

Formand Knuds oplæg på ”Kyst og Fisk” (IFM Nordsøøcentret og Ålborg Universitet) bliver sat på hjemmesiden.

I øjeblikket arbejder vi med at fremstille en større plancheudstilling. Den første del forventes at være klar til vor deltagelse i ”Danmarks Sociale Forum” i København sidste weekend i september.