Aaron Orlowski

Aaron Orlowski

Contributing Editor

Aaron Orlowski is a West Coast-based freelance journalist who writes about fisheries, food, science, and the environment. Before settling in Portland, Oregon, he worked for newspapers in California, North Dakota, and South Dakota. In his spare time, he attempts to salvage untested recipes in the kitchen.

Published on
January 17, 2020

In 2017, two South Korean vessels were caught fishing illegally and violating conservation measures in the region governed by the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, but were not sanctioned and instead were allowed to sell their fish on the international market.

The incident brought rebukes from other countries, including the United States, and prompted South Korea to revise its Distant-Water Fisheries

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Published on
January 14, 2020

A new study has shown that fishery management, when done well, works, and is the solution for keeping fisheries sustainable.

By looking at data from about 30 countries around the world, a group of researchers have concluded that intense fisheries management has led to healthy or improving fish populations, while a dearth of management has led to overfishing. The researchers published their results in a study in the Proceedings of the National

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Published on
January 13, 2020

When shrimp growers across Central America need advice, they turn to Honduran shrimp farmer Napoleon Araujo.

Araujo has a hand in just about every step of the shrimp supply chain. He's on the board of directors of Laboratory Unifinca, the largest hatchery production facility in Central America, with a capacity of 400 million post-larvae per month – larvae for 12,000 hectares in Honduras and Nicaragua. His first company, Inversiones

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Published on
January 8, 2020

In the Pacific, adoption of seafood traceability technology faces hurdles at multiple stages of the supply chain.

Records frequently start on paper, which can be lost or damaged. Internet coverage is often spotty. Tags with QR codes have to be durable in harsh ocean conditions. Customs and habits are hard to change. And by the time the product is ready for the market, not everyone actually wants fully traced and transparent fish.

The Fiji-based

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Published on
January 7, 2020

In Canada’s Pacific halibut fishery, the introduction of an individual transferable quota catch-share system in the 1990s has given rise to a new fisheries investor class, while pushing owner-operators off the water.

Danielle Edwards knows this intimately, both as an academic, and because she hails from a fishing family in a small community on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Her fishing lineage goes back several generations on both her

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Published on
January 2, 2020

Unmanned aerial drones have the potential to combat illegal fishing, but are so far rarely used to do so.

From small, commercially-available quadcopters to large fixed-wing drones controlled by artificial intelligence, drones have the capacity to extend the eyes of fisheries enforcement officials farther into the open ocean. 

Despite this prospect, there are only a few instances of drones either being used to monitor illegal fishing or

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Published on
January 2, 2020

European fishing vessels in West Africa – and the access agreements that allow them to fish there – threaten to undermine food security for local coastal communities, according to a recent study.

Fishing agreements between the European Union and West African countries continue to target fragile fish stocks in the region, according to Ifesinachi Okafor-Yarwood, who researches why people in West Africa are driven to illegal fishing and

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Published on
December 26, 2019

Just a few years after Mexican abalone fishing cooperatives in Baja California voluntarily established marine protected areas, disaster struck.

A massive mortality event in 2009 and 2010 wracked the abalone fishing industry, which saw losses of biomass of up to 75 percent in some areas. Though scientists were initially unsure of the cause, they later attributed it to hypoxia, or oxygen deprivation.

In the ensuing years, scientists watched as

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Published on
December 24, 2019

Electronic monitoring projects across the United States recently received grants worth USD 3.9 million (EUR 3.4 million), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced.

The grants aim to modernize fisheries data management, monitoring, and reporting by creating tools that lower the costs of collecting and reviewing data.

"Electronic monitoring and reporting advancements will

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Published on
December 23, 2019

Diseases cost shrimp farmers around the world billions of dollars every year, while scaring off potential investors and posing risks to farmers' livelihoods.

In Southeast Asia, more than 90 percent of shrimp farms have at least one dormant disease living in the water, such as white spot disease, white feces disease, and hepatopancreatic microsporidiosis (HPM), according to the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), a Dutch organization seeks to

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