Here is our final version of our script!
by The Battery Powered Picklejar Heads, Team 3035
From Lexington, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Traveling salesman- Jenny
Tuna- Ben D.
1st fisherman- Geoff
2nd Fisherman- Gene
World Wildlife Fund (WWF) man- Edward
Man at Tsukiji- Ben O.
Another Man at Tsukiji- Josh
Yet Another Man at Tsukiji- Chris
Other Man at Tsukiji- Elliot
Worker at Tsukiji- Hayoung
Narrator- Hi, we’re the Battery Powered Picklejar Heads Team 3035, from Lexington Massachusetts. For our research project, we researched and developed a solution for the problem of tuna climate change and tuna overfishing, which affects both the Boston and Tsukiji communities. Tsukiji is the leading fish market in Japan, which Ben D., Jenny, and Geoff all have visited in 2007. We all live very close to Boston. Our skit begins with two fishermen, fishing off of the coast of Boston.
(Elliot and Ben O. leave and hold up the background)
1st Fisherman– Every year I catch fewer and fewer big bluefin tuna. I am only allowed to catch one bluefin tuna per day, but it is extremely hard to catch even one bluefin. Global warming is warming the oceans, and making the smaller fish come here from New Jersey, and most of the large bluefin are going to Canada.
2nd Fisherman– El Niño warms the Pacific Ocean, and the North Atlantic Oscillation is warming up the Atlantic. With global warming, El Niño and the North Atlantic Oscillation become harder to predict, and vary their occurrence, location, and movement pattern more.
1st Fisherman– The only problem is that bluefin can’t be commercially sold unless they are over 73 inches long, and most of the 73 inch or longer fish have gone to the Canadian waters, because their food has moved there. Also, because the North Atlantic Oscillation is warming the ocean and melting the ice caps, the bluefin have to move north to find the correct temperature and salinity ranges.
2nd Fisherman-The bluefin are thinner than usual, too, because they have to migrate more to find their food, so we don’t get as much money for them.
1st Fisherman-The only upside is that with less bluefin, the price goes up. As we learned from Mr. Mark Murray-Brown, bluefin in restaurants can cost between forty to fifty dollars per ounce.
Tuna-I can swim up to 70 miles per hour while chasing my food. However, I usually only swim at 9 miles per hour. And, I can grow to over 81 inches long!
1st Fisherman-Rrrrr, rrrrrrr…. (reels in fish) I caught one! (pulls in tuna) (slight pause) Speaking of tuna, we’d better prepare our bluefin to send them to the big Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo.
(Ben D. takes the background from Elliot)
(Hayoung holds up a sign saying “At Tsukiji”)
(Hayoung takes the background from Ben O)
WWF man-NO! I’m from the World Wildlife Fund, and I believe fishing for tuna is bad!
1st Fisherman-No! We can’t stop fishing bluefin! It’s our livelihood!
Man at Tsukiji-Hey, would you guys be interested in farming some tuna? In Australia, Mr. Hagan Stehr has figured out how to make bluefin spawn in captivity. He changed the light, temperature, and current of the tanks, which make the tuna think they’re migrating. Also, Kinki University, here in Japan, has figured out how to make bluefin spawn in captivity, and are commercially selling their bluefin.
(WWF man takes background from Hayoung)
1st Fisherman– Wow! Are there any other solutions?
Traveling Salesman– The Battery Powered Picklejar Heads suggest this solution to tuna migration and management. We will create a special piece of software that you fishermen will download to your GPS-enabled phones. This software will track where you are. Every fisherman who catches tuna will have an account in our database. Fishermen can tag the tuna, and then release it, and if someone else catches the tuna, the first tagger will receive twenty percent of the sale price.
– How does this software work?
Traveling Salesman-If the tuna has a tag on it, the software will detect that tag, and send the data to our website.
Other Man at Tsukiji– What website?
Yet Another Man at Tsukiji– When the fisherman catches a tuna, he will take a picture of the tuna with his phone, and then post the tuna’s picture and statistics to a special website that we will develop. This website will be for bidding on tuna. Once a satisfactory price is reached, the highest bidder will pay the price to the fisherman’s account.
Worker at Tsukiji– But wait, what if no one bids on the tuna?
Traveling Salesman– If no one bids on the tuna, then the fisherman can either release the tuna, or bring the tuna to a market, such as Tsukiji, to sell there. If the tuna is under the legal limit for sale, the fisherman can take the tuna to one of the tuna farms, and sell it. Or, the fisherman can tag the tuna with his account number and release it back into the ocean. When someone else later catches the tuna, the software will detect the tag.
Worker at Tsukiji-Then, when the tuna is bought, the first tagger will receive twenty percent of the selling price, thus providing an incentive to let the tuna grow to full-size. This strategy can stop the tragedy of the commons, by letting people “own” the tuna.
Man at Tsukiji– That will work really well! Is there anything else that the Battery Powered Picklejar Heads are proposing?
Another Man at Tsukiji– Yes! We will institute a maximum size of the tuna. The above-the-maximum-size bluefin can live and reproduce, creating more bluefin tuna.
WWF Man- Wow! That would sure protect the bluefin from overfishing and climate change!
Narrator: We shared our solution with Professor Ted Bestor, chair of the Harvard Anthropology department, and leading expert on the Tsukiji seafood market, with Dr. Molly Lutcavage, the Director of the Large Pelagics Research Center at the University of New Hampshire, with Eric Swanson, an MIT scientist who tags tuna for the University of New Hampshire, with Rich Ruais, a tuna lobbyist, and with Mr. Mark Murray-Brown, who controls the opening and closing of the bluefin tuna industry for the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). We also have been featured on Dr. Molly Lutcavage’s website.
1st Fisherman-The End.