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One Planet: How Fishing Fleets Threaten A Natural Wonder In The Galápagos Islands

Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times
Waters off Marchena Island is a dive spot known by locals as the fish arena, where colorful fish, like these razor surgeonfish, swim in large schools.

On this edition of Your Call’s One Planet Series, we're speaking with Los Angeles Times investigative reporter Susanne Rust about Ecuador's Galapagos Islands, one of the richest marine ecosystems in the world.

The islands and the surrounding marine reserve have been called a unique ‘living museum and showcase of evolution’, but COVID-19 has laid bare the vulnerability of an economic model that is 90% dependent upon tourism. The islands are also under threat by Chinese fishing fleets. Many vessels are designed to hold 1,000 tons a catch.


Susanne Rust, investigative environmental reporter at the Los Angeles Times

Dr. Marla Valentine, illegal fishing and transparency analyst at Oceana

Web Resources:

The Guardian: Chinese fishing armada plundered waters around Galápagos, data shows

The Los Angeles Times: Crisis in the Galapagos: Chinese fishing fleets and COVID-19 threaten a natural wonder