Greenpeace Ad Maligns Fishing Industry with Inaccurate 'Overfishing' Claims

All is fair in love and war ... and environmentalism.

A Greenpeace advertisement attacking the fishing industry that was posted on YouTube Dec. 3 spells out doom and gloom for a type of Pollock if action isn't taken soon.

"Alaskan Pollock are being overfished," the voice in the TV spot said. "They're the source of everything from fish sandwiches to fish sticks. Overfishing of Canadian cod resulted in 40,000 lost jobs." The YouTube ad encouraged viewers to visit to "help defend our oceans from overfishing."

But, according to a video rebuttal of the Greenpeace ad by the National Fisheries Institute, the Greenpeace "solution" would cost the fishing industry $400 million and not do anything to improve the quantity of Alaskan Pollock in the oceans.

The rebuttal also stated that Greenpeace's ad misused the word "overfished" and "overfishing." But the Alaskan Pollock does not fit in that category under the definition of "overfishing" put forth by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

"Alaskan Pollock population levels are high, and no overfishing is occurring," NOAA's FishWatch Web site says on its page about the fish.

The NFI also pointed out the Greenpeace ad's reference to Canadian Cod was a red herring.

"Greenpeace is talking about an Atlantic cod species under Canadian management," the NFI rebuttal said. "Alaska Pollock is managed by the U.S.'s National Marine Fisheries Service and is considered one of the best managed stocks in the world."

Despite those facts, Reuters bought the Greenpeace alarmism about the Alaskan Pollock hook, line and sinker. A Nov. 21 Reuters "analysis" by Jasmin Melvin cited the director of Greenpeace's oceans campaign, John Hocevar, who called for more cuts.

"Taking 815,000 tonnes next year won't leave much fish in the water to rebuild the population, never mind to feed fur seals or endangered Steller sea lions that depend on pollock for food," Hocevar said to Reuters.

Reuters has a track record of using Greenpeace information to advance the claim that Alaskan Pollock is being overfished. A one-sided Oct. 10 Reuters story, also by Melvin, relied solely on Greenpeace data without challenging it according to a letter from NFI to Reuters.

"This statement, which goes unchallenged in her reporting, has simply no basis in fact and quickly became the cornerstone of a Greenpeace fundraising campaign that kicked off on the same day Ms. Melvin's story was published," Gavin Gibbons of the National Fisheries Institute wrote in a letter dated Oct. 14

Greenpeace has no problem crossing ethical boundaries to promote its wide array of environmental causes. A Greenpeace ad produced earlier this year resurrected assassinated former President John F. Kennedy to push its cause to promote global warming alarmism.

Environment Business Coverage Reuters Video John Hocevar Gavin Gibbons Jasmin Melvin