I can understand why Maine lobstermen might be fearful about projects that could impact their livelihood, but their opposition to the New England Aqua Ventus project is misdirected. The disruption to their industry, in the form of cables and transmission lines, pales in comparison to disruption of the marine environment by activities of an industry closely related to their own.

I refer to bottom trawling. In a study published last week in the journal Nature, the researchers admit they are astonished by data revealing that, worldwide, the carbon released into the ocean yearly by bottom trawling is equivalent to the entire annual greenhouse-gas emissions of the aviation industry.

When bottom sediments are disturbed, the stored carbon is released and enhances an ever-growing acidification of ocean waters, causing great harm to marine life and the ability of the ocean to act as a sink for carbon dioxide.

Lobstermen can survive the undersea cables; the entire fishery may well collapse if we don’t get climate change under control.

Joe Hardy

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