Tag Archives: environmentalists

Are sea lions and seals eating too much of B.C.’s salmon? The answer may lead to a cull

An increasing number of the protected seals and sea lions (larger than seals, sea lions can walk) may be upsetting the balance of the British Columbia marine ecosystem. Now some First Nations are proposing a cull. “Environmentalists trying to stop traditional seal and sea lion hunts … are trying to starve out the Indians,” says Tom Sewid of the Kwakwak’wakw First Nation on northeastern Vancouver Island. “I won’t put up with it.” And as seals and sea lions have prospered, salmon have struggled. “The demise of the salmon runs in British Columbia is equivalent if not greater than the extinction of the great buffalo herds across the Great Plains” in the 1800s, says Sewid. > click to read < 09:01

Another big Maritime fishery quota cut looming

Another Maritime fishery is facing a big quota cut this year. The only question is how big. This time it is the large herring fishery in southwestern Nova Scotia and the Bay of Fundy. The stock is in the critical zone where serious harm is occurring, but the fishery employs hundreds of people in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. What happens next will again test how far Canada’s fisheries minister is willing to go to rebuild a depleted stock. >click to read< 09:35

Whales entangled in fishing gear could prompt early end to Dungeness crab season

On Tuesday, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced that one of the entangled whales had been spotted near Moss Beach, just north of Half Moon Bay, on March 11. The other was spotted on March 19 in Monterey Bay. Both were alive at the time. “In anticipation of increasing risk due to migrating humpback and blue whales, a closure will help minimize additional entanglement risk,” read a report from the department,,, However, the Dungeness crab fishing fleet in the affected areas may already be shutting itself down preemptively, said Sonoma County fisherman Dick Ogg, who is on a working group organized by the Department of Fish and Wildlife to assess risk to whales and make recommendations on when it’s time to close the season. >click to read< 07:35

‘The Lobster Trap’

You’d never know it to meet McCarthy, an unassuming, soft-spoken man who goes to work in a T-shirt and waterproof oilskins but he is, at 32, among the most successful lobstermen in a place where lobster is king. On this remote and rocky island, 15 miles offshore, virtually everyone from the grocery clerk to the family doctor traces their living back to the tanks full of lobster that these boats haul into port each day.,,, In the next decade, regulators will demand that lobstermen like him, who fish in federal waters, switch to a brand-new type of gear that minimizes risk for whales, by eliminating vertical ropes that can ensnare them. >click to read< 08:24

Minister reaffirms DFO’s authority to regulate Mi’kmaw fishery, while also addressing other issues

Joyce Murray reaffirmed the federal government has the authority to regulate M’ikmaw moderate livelihood fishing as she made her first visit to Atlantic Canada this week as the minister of fisheries and oceans. The Vancouver MP used her time on the East Coast to meet with provincial governments, industry, Indigenous leaders and environmentalists. Murray also touched on the reopening of the commercial redfish fishery, the fish harvester benefit repayment, and also discusses MPA’s. >click to read< 18:18

Dungeness Crab Season Could be Delayed Again this Year – The push for pop-up gear systems

This year, according to NMFS data, there have been 16 confirmed whale entanglements along the West Coast through Sept. 30. That includes 10 humpback whales, four gray whales, one fin whale and a minke whale; 11 other reports could not be verified. The vast majority of these reports came from waters along California. The California Dungeness Crab Fishing Gear Working Group, known informally as the Whale Working Group, was created in September 2015 and is made up of industry players, government officials and environmentalists looking for solutions. >click to read< 09:53

Unicorns and Mermaids! Ocean Rebellion in Cornwall call for ban on bottom trawling

Penryn’s Ocean Rebellion crew claimed to have found a gossip of mermaids entangled in discarded fishing waste. They say the pod had washed up along with a trawler boat on Sailors Creek, up the Penryn River. The group claims the mythical creatures are being killed by the effects of ghost fishing gear and damage from industrial fishing, damage that is destroying all the local coastal ecosystems they inhabit.  >click to read< 09:05

Held Hostage For Ropeless? Reject the Pew Petition for 3 lobster area closures that protect no Right Whale!

Maine Delegation Calls on Commerce Secretary to Reject Petition for Seasonal and Dynamic Closures in Parts of Maine’s Lobster Fishery – Maine’s congressional delegation today pressed Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to reject a petition by the Pew Charitable Trusts to impose seasonal and dynamic closures on parts of Maine’s lobster fishery. The lawmakers’ objections centered on the limited effects the closures would have on protecting right whales at significant economic cost on lobstering communities up and down the state’s coast. The rulemaking proposed in the petition would close three different areas of Lobster Management Area 1 to vertical line trap fishing. Pew proposed opening those areas to ropeless fishing, ignoring the reality that ropeless technology is not commercially available, financially viable for lobstermen, or proven safe and effective. >click to read<.  Read a copy of the letter here.

“We’re in pretty bad shape,” Commercial fishermen, fishing industry decline over the past 20 years

North Carolina commercial fishermen have complained for decades that government regulations and a variety of other factors threaten their livelihood and have them headed the way of endangered species. Glenn Skinner of Newport, executive director of the North Carolina Fisheries Association an advocacy group of commercial fishermen, said statistics back that up. “These declines are the result of many different factors. with regulations, the fear of future regulations or outright bans on commercial fishing gears being a significant factor,” Skinner said. He said public perception and political agendas drive the regulations. >click to read< 11:26

Book Review: COFFIN COVE, By Jackie Elliott. A gripping murder mystery full of twists in a tiny fishing village

Andrea “Andi” Silvers needs a fresh start. Once a star reporter, she’s been dumped by her lover and by the paper,, Andi moves to the tiny fishing village of Coffin Cove on the Vancouver coast, where she lands a job at the local Gazette.,, Two sea lions wash up on the shore. They’ve been shot dead. Activists point the finger at local fishermen. Then things get far worse,,, She is driven to uncover mysteries and expose truths. She’s attracted to local fisherman Harry Brown, and he’s interested in her, but he won’t engage in a casual relationship. It’s all or nothing for him. Harry Brown brews some coffee in the galley, normally drinks his first cup of the day on the stern of his pride and joy, a sixty foot aluminum purse seiner, the Pipe Dream, >click to read< 15:10

With the Ocean Wind Offshore Wind Farm on the horizon, a storm is building

Ocean Wind, according to those closely following the project, is headed for a series of turf wars, loud debates and protracted legal battles, even before the first turbine is sited off the coast of southern New Jersey.,, even supporters and opponents of the proposed wind farm at times disagree among themselves on how to move forward. Environmentalists, commercial fishermen, recreational boaters, labor unions, homeowners, boardwalk businesses, NIMBYs and ratepayer advocates are all circling Orsted, the Dutch wind power company behind what could be one of the largest wind farms in North America. Local, state and federal officials are also starting to feel the heat. Just about everyone involved, including David Hardy, CEO of Orsted US, worries the project could devolve into chaos. >click to read< 13:11

Lobstermen say proposed Right Whale rules are expensive, dangerous, and based on outdated data

During the final public hearings, Maine Department of Marine Resource Commissioner Patrick Keliher echoed a statement put out by Gov. Janet Mills earlier that week stating that “a one-size-fits-all approach in the state of Maine will not work.” Fishermen and environmentalists voiced concerns over the science federal regulators were using to make decisions, including the number of right whales alive today, how many have been harmed by entanglements or struck by ships and the effectiveness of proposed gear changes.  “We all agree on one thing,” said Matt Gilley, a Harpswell lobsterman who spoke up at the virtual meeting. “That is that the data is flawed. In what direction, that remains to be seen.” >click to read< 11:10

Enviro’s Lukewarm Reception For Canada Modifying Right Whale Protections

The Animal Welfare Institute has responded to the Canadian government’s recent decision to modify right whale protections, specifically concerning how they affect lobster and crab fishers. On the one hand, the institute welcomes and applauds the government commitment to “Whale Safe” ropeless fishing gear. However, it does not accept the promotion of weaker rope lines as a long-term solution for entanglement. >click to read< , with a link to the policy they oppose, unreasonably. 18:06

Its Deadline for Comments Day on South Fork Wind Farm Environmental Report

BOEM, which recently finished its draft environmental review of the South Fork Wind Farm, gave the public a chance to weigh in on the document at three virtual public hearings in mid-February, and is accepting further written public comment through midnight tonight… Meghan Lapp of Seafreeze Ltd. in Narragansett, Rhode Island, “Our vessels will have to fish in the area, which will be impossible if this goes through as planned,” she said, adding that the DEIS “does not contain any cumulative impact analysis” of how the offshore wind industry will affect the fishing industry. Bonnie Brady of the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association, based in Montauk, agreed with Ms. Lapp, adding,,, >click to read< 12:05

The war over scallops and the future of sustainable fishing in Scotland

Just sixty tonnes of the species were landed at Scottish ports in 1960. In 2019 the equivalent figure topped 15,000 tonnes, down 2% from 2018 but still worth nearly £36m. The boom, however, has sparked a sometimes bitter clash between enviros and the fishing industry over how scallops, which grow on the seabed, are harvested. Diver-fishermen and campaigners say dredgers are effectively ploughing through delicate marine environments to create a scallop monoculture off the Scottish coast. >click to read< 08:30

Blue collar fishermen deserve to make a living, not persecution from weak minded politicians and wealthy enviros

Austen Brown started fishing commercially with his father off California’s coast when he was only 8 years old. By the time he was 13, Austen was making his own living as a fisherman, and he has spent the past few decades fishing for everything from codfish to shark. But perhaps his favorite target is the elusive swordfish.,, The swordfish is also a favorite catch for Chris Williams, who has spent more than 40 years plying his commercial fishing trade off the California coast, including targeting swordfish with drift gillnets. Tragically, California’s drift gillnet ban comes at the expense of the fishermen and their families who will be put out of business for no good reason. Video, >click to read< 08:34

Advocates say B.C. needs a fisheries minister

Each year, about 196,000 tonnes of seafood, everything from salmon to scallops, is harvested off the B.C. coast. But unlike its East Coast counterparts, the province doesn’t have a fisheries minister. In the past several decades, the province has seen tumbling salmon populations, an increasingly inequitable distribution of the fisheries’ economic benefits and a drop in local processing capacity. All have eaten away at coastal communities, and the province’s ability to feed itself from the sea, a situation that advocates say calls for a minister dedicated to the portfolio. >click to read< 18:38

Lawsuit Challenges Trump OK of Commercial Fishing in Atlantic Marine Monument

The lawsuit was filed in federal district court in Washington, D.C. by the Conservation Law Foundation, Natural Resources Defense Council, Center for Biological Diversity and Zack Klyver, lead naturalist with the Bar Harbor Whale Watch Company in Maine. “Trump’s order was illegal because he can’t just declare commercial fishing is allowed in a protected marine monument,” said Kristen Monsell, an attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “The Seamounts monument was created to permanently safeguard this amazing ecosystem and vulnerable species like the endangered sperm whale. Presidents can’t be allowed to gut protections by decree as a favor to commercial fishermen.”  >click to read< 11:40

North Atlantic Right whale trouble: Lawsuit on protections could last for months

Environmental groups sued the U.S. government with a claim that regulators’ failure to protect the North Atlantic right whale from harm was a violation of the Endangered Species Act, and U.S. District Judge James Boasberg ruled April 9 that they were right. The government, environmentalists and industry members who are involved in the lawsuit must still return to court to determine a remedy. Boasberg ruled that the risk posed to the whales by the lobster fishery was too great to be sustainable, and that a remedy could ultimately result in new restrictions on lobster fishing. Members of the industry, including the Maine Lobstermen’s Association, have vowed to fight to protect the fishery. >click to read< 11:27

Senate Democrats, Greens Seek Climate Mandates In Federal Stimulus Bills

Senate Democrats and environmentalists want to tack climate change mandates onto proposed federal aid to major airlines and cruise lines reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. In a letter to the House and Senate leadership, eight Senate Democrats said last week that any financial assistance to the travel industry “should be paired with requirements that companies act in a more responsible fashion” by reducing their carbon footprint. “Climate change damages will wreak havoc on a scale even greater than the coronavirus,” said the Friday letter headed by the Center for Biological Diversity. Democrats who signed the letter were Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Jeffrey Merkley of Oregon, Cory A. Booker of New Jersey, Edward Markey of Massachusetts, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Tina Smith of Minnesota and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan. >click to read< 10:12

Environmentalists are dragging us back to the Dark Ages

In the early 1990s, our small group of Potlatch employees in cooperation with members of the Lewiston and Clarkston chambers of commerce were researching environmental claims that the lower Snake River dams were devastating salmon runs, when we learned about East Sand Island, a man-made island in the estuary of the Columbia River. The island was formed from dredging deposits in 1983 and by 1984, Caspian terns, cormorants and gulls had colonized the island and were feasting on salmon smolts. We thought: “Wow, this is an easy fix. Tear out a man-made island and save millions of endangered fish.” The environmentalists beat us to the punch. They filed in federal court to protect the island and the birds under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. Now we have the largest nesting colony of these non-endangered birds in the world on a man-made island. by Marvin Dugger >click to read< 09:50

Vancouver Island: Controversy grows as herring fishery approaches

Anticipation is growing in French Creek’s harbour as herring boats began to fill it Wednesday ahead of the fishery opening. The opening could be any day. Fisheries and Oceans test boats have already recorded herring returning to spawn. “Could be any minute now, you know Mother Nature is temperamental,” said Captain of the Pender Isle Jason Roberts. Video,  >click tp read< 12:32

Federal regulations to protect right whales are delayed until at least this summer

Officials at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which is responsible for protecting the critically endangered species, had planned to issue the regulations last year. But they were delayed after months of criticism from the region’s powerful lobster industry, which is worried that new requirements could be harsh and expensive. >click to read< 18:03

The Best North Queensland seafood available for Christmas

Fishers are encouraging families to include wild caught Australian seafood in their festive feast in a bid to prop up the industry amid regulatory green-tape.,,, “There is that much pressure on the fishing industry, that for some the future is looking pretty bleak,” Mr Dansie said. “The biggest things is that if people want to have real Australian seafood they need to keep buying and supporting us.” >click to read< Support your fishing industry! 15:34

Top climate hawk bashes first big offshore wind project. Sheldon??

For the past seven years, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse has given a weekly address about the dangers of climate change. Increasingly, some greens wonder if he is full of hot air. The Rhode Island Democrat, one of the Senate’s top climate hawks, has emerged as a leading critic of Vineyard Wind, an 84-turbine offshore wind project proposed in federal waters 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard.,,, Whitehouse’s statements echo concerns of Rhode Island squid fishermen, who have emerged as leading opponents of Vineyard Wind. >click to read< 12:21

Climate Alarmists Propose Feeding Cows Seaweed To Lower Methane In Farts

Environmentalists intent on finding new ways to reduce so-called greenhouse gas emissions to curb climate change have proposed a novel method: feed cows seaweed to diminish methane in flatulence, belches, and manure. Ermias Kebreab, a zoology professor at the University of California–Davis, led a team in producing a bovine meal regimen containing varying levels of Asparagopsis armata, a strain of red seaweed, and fed it to 12 dairy cows over a two-month period. >click to read< 20:31

Fines to rogue fishermen fall and illegal fishing escapes prosecution, environmentalists claim

Concerns have been raised recently that fishermen are increasingly involved in illegal scallop dredging and prawn trawling to supply a black market in seafood, at the expense of Scotland’s marine environment.,,, Environmentalists claim that the Scottish Government is not treating damage to MPAs by boats as “serious crimes”. They have accused the official body tasked with protecting seas, Marine Scotland, of failing to take tough enforcement action against skippers breaking the law. >click to read< 13:54

The New Zealand fishing industry is fighting back against claims its newspaper advertising campaign is “spin”

It is true that the seafood industry is in fighting mode, as evidenced by a series of full-page ads we are running in the Dominion Post and the New Zealand Herald. However, there is a very good reason for that. Hundreds of small, family-owned fishing businesses are at stake if a review of the Hector’s and Māui dolphin Threat Management Plan sees tougher rules introduced.,, And for what? there has been no death of a Māui dolphin attributed to commercial fishing since 2002.,,,  the biggest threat to the Māui is not fishing. It’s toxoplasmosis, a parasitic disease found in cat faeces,,, >click to read< 09:36

Lobstermen, environmentalists weigh in on right whale rules

Some of the largest and most powerful animal and environmental groups – including the Pew Charitable Trust, the U.S. Humane Society, the Conservation Law Foundation and Oceana – sent representatives to the hearing. They urged National Marine Fisheries Service to take immediate action to protect the whale, including proposals that even the team tasked by the fisheries service to come up with its whale protection plan had dismissed, such as offshore closures and ropeless lobster fishing. >click to read< 20:58

Lack of Trust muddies the water in UK fishing industry, (it muddies all waters, not just in the UK)

A survey of UK fishermen has revealed low levels of trust in key government organisations and scientists. The authors of the study say it is an area that urgently needs to be addressed for a successful fishing industry after Brexit. The study, (another hypothesis) by researchers (someone doing their Masters) at the University of York, involved a questionnaire designed to examine how well fishermen working in the UK fishing industry trusted key governing bodies, scientists and environmental groups. The researchers found low levels of trust in nearly all the institutions included in the survey. This is likely to be down to poor communication, political interference and discontent with the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy, the authors suggest. (The authors are biased towards management, actually, so unless you’re an EDF fisherman, none of this makes sense. >click to read< 13:05