Blame over fishing

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Don’t blame commercial fishermen. I started commercial fishing or sea urchin diving in 1980 when the ocean once seemed untouched. There was a need for my industry as a result of the kelp loss from Malibu to Palos Verdes. This fishery helps the environment in many ways by providing a canopy for fish to live while producing oxygen in our atmosphere.

Along with sea urchins I soon qualified for other permits based on catching other species. Some of the species are fin fish, lobster and crab. The State of California began to base eligibility on annual catch and landings in order for a fisherman to renew his or her permit. This system has forced fishermen to overfish in fear of losing permits as well as fishing during spawning that depletes stocks.

Jim Eberhardt