Thank government for shark week?

shark weekThis article from PS Mag leads with the bad news about the health of the earth’s oceans, which isn’t the best strategy, as we often advise our partners. But it does pivot quickly to highlighting a public success story—the ways in which environmental laws are improving prospects for the iconic predator of the seas, the great white shark. Author Ben Goldfarb concludes the article so eloquently and positively that we couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

While global shark concerns remain pressing, though, they don’t detract from this truth: State and federal environmental laws have bolstered great whites in California (and on the East Coast, too). To [Chris Lowe, a marine biologist at California State University – Long Beach], those benefits aren’t touted often enough. “If all we sell is doom and gloom science, people are going to start asking why they’re being taxed for this stuff,” Lowe says. “We need to talk about how our environmental laws are succeeding.”

 So the next time you’re glued to the Discovery Channel, and the serrated teeth and slate-gray flanks of Carcharodon carcharias flash on your screen, try to see the great white as neither killing machine nor victim, but as something else entirely: a barometer of regulatory success. Environmental rules like the Clean Water Act exist for a reason, and, contrary to what their opponents might tell you, that’s not to kill jobs or dampen the economy. That’s because they work.

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