Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Free Tuna?

Last week San Diego had "the storm of the decade" according to some forecasters and "the storm of the century" according to the national news. Now, when this happens in San Diego the Tijuana River flows from Mexico, under the border fence and into US waters at a beach known as Imperial Beach. This water is, how shall I say, full of it? "It" being crap...yes, literally...raw sewage that overflows from Tijuana (commonly known as TJ) as well as the tons of garbage and debris. It makes the Tijuana River Valley on the U.S. side look like a recycling center in a pool of thick brown water and it all flows out into the ocean there at the beach. And I"m not just talking about a little flow and then it dissipates into the gorgeous blue ocean. I'm talking a digusting brown plume of water moving north along the beach for miles!!!! Millions of gallons of this nasty stuff flowing into the ocean per day! YUCK!

Click here if you want to see a cool scientific link about the plume and watch as it flows out of TJ.

I mention this because last week's storm also brought huge waves in the 15-18' range to Southern California and probably bigger in Northern Baja Mexico. These waves apparently tore open some of the aquafarm pens that house blue fin tuna down in Northern Baja. The tuna, having been raised in the pens their whole life are weaker, I imagine, than their free swimming counterparts. It seems the loose tuna got caught up in some currents and have been thrashing around in the shore pound along the beaches in Imperial Beach (IB).

Some folks have headed down there to grab up these 20-40lb blue fin in waist deep water and take them home for dinner. I guess the fish are so beaten from the big waves that they're easy to just scoop up and take them home.

Wouldn't common sense tell you...or me...or anyone...that wading waist deep, into chocolate brown sewage water that is flowing from the Tijuana River wouldn't be an ideal place to collect your dinner? No matter how free it is? The risk of getting Hepatitis is so high that there's actually a free clinic down in IB for surfers to get inocculated so they can go surf in the winter when it's huge but the river is doing it's thing and flowing into the water right there.

Is the price of tuna and our desire for it that great that people have to risk getting sick over it?

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