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When it comes to the business of seafood, COVID-19 hasn’t been nearly as damaging as the ecological havoc caused by humans, a recent global survey of fish farms found.

More than 80% of the 585 fish farms surveyed worldwide reported that the economic losses from human-caused issues such as climate change, pollution, and flooding far outweigh losses from supply-chain hiccups or a loss in buyers caused by the pandemic.

GRI Faculty Affiliate, Brian Helmuth, who co-authored the report believes that the devastating impact global warming is already having on oceans, lakes, and rivers across the planet is only going to get worse. The additional economic losses triggered since the 2020 start of the pandemic should serve as a wake-up call for fish farmers across the world, says Helmuth, because they will face additional hurdles amid an escalating climate crisis.

The report, published this month, assessed the impact of COVID-19 on fish farms in more than 50 countries. The 585 fish farms that responded to the survey detailed losses in stock, sales, and jobs as a result of COVID-19. Nearly 490 of those respondents said pollutants, diseased fish, and other human-caused climate problems caused more losses than the economic downturn triggered by COVID-19, or supply-chain snarls.