Letters for July 22, 2016

• Monument expansion would benefit fish population

Monument expansion would benefit fish population

I did not grow up in Kauai nor I am Hawaiian but I have grown up in the ocean in almost every capacity though and have a deep love for it and all is creatures. It’s heartbreaking for me to go dive and see empty reefs these days. People keep talking about the expansion of the monument and how Hawaii will suffer with a lack of fish as a consequence.

The truth is, we already suffer from a lack of fish. Populations of many species are way down. We as the consumer just don’t see it because long liners are going out further and buying other quotas to try and keep up with our demand. If we keep thinking so shortsighted, we will end up with no fish in the very near future. This monument provides a sanctuary for these fish to mature and breed, ensuring future generations of food.

We are now in a stage in our planet that we need to think sustainably and progressively if we want to keep species around. This isn’t far fetched or generations down the road. We can and are losing species in our lifetime. Not to mention none of these long lingers are Hawaii owned or run further letting local fish money escape our communities.

Expanding this monument not only allows for our precious fish to reproduce and flourish, but allows for our local fisherman to acquire more of the overflow instead of the long liners. It might seem scary to some to think that there will be a decline in our stock of seafood, but it’s even scarier to think of our reefs barren forever. Thank you for listening.

Jilly Wenderlich, Kilauea

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