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More than one type of fog

All mariners know that there is more than one type of fog which can be encountered at sea. Amongst them is radiation fog, forming in the evening when heat absorbed by the Earth’s surface during the day is radiated into the air. Advection fog can be dense and long-lasting as warm, moist air blows over a colder surface. Frontal fog, 

a warm front precipitation falling into colder air, causes fog near the surface.

There is also fog ashore, thin or thick, causing people to have difficulty in seeing through it. 

“Fog is very terrible. It comes about you before you realise and you are suddenly blind, dumb and cold,” wrote Anne Morrow Lindbergh, the wife of decorated pioneer aviator Charles Lindbergh who was herself an aviator and writer.

So fog creates a lot of problems – at sea, in the air, on land and amongst those who have ‘fog of the mind.’

With a foggy mind you see nothing but fog. Brain fog is characterised by confusion, forgetfulness and lack of mental clarity.

This condition appears to affect some of the country’s NGOs, the non-governmental organisations, who spend time attacking the fishing industry. Anti-fishing publicity, articles, social media postings, have increased noticeably..

Until recently the fishing industry has not had a high profile record of countering such attacks, as a result of which it has suffered in public perception.

The industry has changed with the advent of stronger voices from producer organisations and other representative groups.

That it has become more active in responding, initiating public demonstrations this year and defending itself, appears to have angered some of those environmental organisations. From what I see, hear and receive, there appears to be an increasing stridency.

‘Overfishing’ is an allegation used regularly, but often without acknowledgement of the regulation of the fishing industry in Ireland. Not often referenced is the impact of non-Irish fleets on stocks in Irish waters,.

The core point is ignored – that it is not in the interests of Irish fishermen to see species wiped out. Adequate stocks which allow for catching of fish is essential for the industry to survive and to thrive. Preserving them is in the interests of fishers. The industry has been involved in conservation.

Coastal communities are an important part of this island nation. The fishing industry is economically essential to them.

Fish is a seafood, a valuable part of the food chain for humans. To have a fishing industry should be considered vital for an island nation.

Environmental organisations have their place in the nation, their voices on varying topics have, at times, proved that. But the increasing stridency of anti-fishing statements from some of them has reflected lack of balance and accuracy.

No one defends illegal or damaging actions, industry organisations have made that clear.

“Respect” is defined as “due regard for the feelings, wishes, the rights of others, the admiration elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.”

While respecting the contribution of environmental organisations to the nation, respect for the people of the coastal, fishing communities is a required balance.

Tom MacSweeney

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