Which of the below is an example of the tragedy of the commons? a. Treaties allowing for the limited taking of whales for research purposes b. Offshore clam beds in public areas depleted below replenishment levels by overfishing c. Individuals catching their legal limit of fish on a daily basis d. Shrimp boats accidentally catching turtles in their nets e. A large storm smothering a large oyster bed with a new sand bar
Tragedy of the common is the overconsumption and depletion of the shared resource. An example of this is offshore clam beds in public areas depleted below replenishment levels by overfishing.
Let us first define the key term:
The tragedy of the commons is when individuals act on their self-interest to exploit a publicly accessed resource.
We can think of it as a group of people in a boat who separately break off pieces of wood for their own benefit, not thinking that doing so would sink the boat, along with them in it.