Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Energy/Environment/Animal Welfare Dilemma

So here's the current state of affairs. I have a nonnative species that has been living with me for the past five years. That's one less invasive organism causing harm in the wild, right? Except that the very act of keeping it alive is still causing measurable environmental harm through the otherwise unnecessary use of energy (not to mention the associated manufacturing of the aquarium and all the trappings necessary to maintain it.)

So what do I do now? Do I continue to spend valuable energy to meet the biological needs of just one fish? Or do I solve the energy problem by simply releasing the catfish into the nearest body of water? What's one more catfish in a canal already overrun with them anyways? Or dare I consider the other, more difficult option-- euthanasia?

My conscience doesn't easily entertain any of these options. Perhaps there's one more to consider... 

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