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The Farmer And The Fishermen

Lauren Owens Lambert | United States

The farming crew of Merry Oyster’s, handpick and load the boat during low tide on Duxbury Bay, Massachusetts in July. Scientists say ocean water has grown 30 percent more acidic since the Industrial Revolution and is on track to get worse in coming decades as it soaks up excess carbon dioxide from air. Although Climate Change poses its challenges such as ocean acidification and increasing costal storm intensity, the shellfish industry in Massachusetts is one of the fastest growing in the state. Shellfish such as oysters, scallops and mussels is not only a good source for local food but because they are filter feeders they also help clean the ocean.

Exploring the changing livelihoods and cultural identities of coastal fishing communities at the forefront of climate change and shifting economies. With 400 years of commercial fishing history in the North East wild fish stocks are some of the most stressed in the Nation and climate change is hurting the industry with rising sea levels, intense coastal storms, ocean acidity and rising sea temperatures changing fish behavior and location. This makes accurate monitoring and appropriate policy making a challenge leading to an increase in tensions between fishermen, scientists, regulators and the rising aquaculture industry. Fishermen are losing their jobs and are being forced to think about how to adapt or move on. Shellfish, seaweed and fish farming are becoming more popular in New England and with the increase of aquaculture, both for food and conservation, some traditional fishermen are trading in their boats for pens while others are working on restoring ecosystems and gathering data to support the increase of wild fish stocks.

Blue Earth Alliance 



Lauren Owens Lambert is a freelance photojournalist based in the Boston area whose work has a creative focus in documenting social and behavioral adaptations to environmental stressors. Her creative objective is to both inform through the facts and connect through emotion. In her work, she places people as part of natural cycles, a perspective that is sometimes lost in contemporary society. Her work has been published with The New England Center for Investigative Reporting, The Nature Conservancy, The Ground Truth Project, NBC and The Boston Globe.

The broader outcome of the project— its core purpose — is to spark dialogues across the political spectrum about what this means for North Americans and what we can do to save what we treasure most about our communities and the Oceans. Perhaps, even more importantly, I hope to look beyond the stereotypes and conflicts and move towards the reality of those who are proactively and creatively working to protect their environment, livelihoods and culture.

Phone: (617) 640-8782

Website: www. LaurenOwensLambert.com

Email: Lauren@LaurenOwensLmabert.com

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