Tag Archives: Trump administration

Trump administration settles lawsuit, agrees to protect humpback whale habitat

The suit by the Center for Biological Diversity, Turtle Island Restoration Network and the Wishtoyo Chumash Foundation, a nonprofit that represents American Indian tribes, was settled Friday in federal court in San Francisco. The National Marine Fisheries Service agreed to designate critical habitat for the animals by mid-2019 and finalize those boundaries a year later. It means the migration routes of three endangered or threatened populations of humpbacks on the West Coast will be protected. >click to read<09:40

Pingree Helps Lead Effort to Provide Trade Relief to Fishermen

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-ME) has signed on as an original cosponsor of legislation that Congressman Seth Moulton (D-MA) introduced today to provide disaster relief to fishermen who have been harmed by the repercussions of the Trump Administration’s trade actions. “Farmers haven’t been the only ones to suffer the consequences of the Trump Administration’s sloppy trade actions. The bill would provide disaster relief for commercial fishery failures due to tariffs imposed by the United States or another country. >click to read<18:12

USDA Rolls Out Trade Aid – Trump Administration Details One-Time Aid Programs to Help Farmers Facing Tariff Pains

Under a plan announced Tuesday by the Trump administration, farmers growing soybeans, corn, sorghum, wheat, cotton, milk and hogs will be able to apply for tariff aid payments sometime this fall to offset the impact of lost trade markets. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, stressing that President Donald Trump continues to support U.S. farmers, announced an aid package of up to $12 billion for agriculture, which will be available through three separate programs.  Perdue called the trade response “a short-term solution” that would give President Trump time to work on long-term trade deals that would end the retaliatory tariffs.  Perdue said the $12 billion figure “is directly in line with the estimated $11 billion impact of illegal tariffs on agriculture.” >click to read<21:43

Trump Effort to Lift U.S. Offshore Wind Sector Sparks Interest from Europe

The Trump administration wants to fire up development of the U.S. offshore wind industry by streamlining permitting and carving out vast areas off the coast for leasing – part of its ‘America First’ policy to boost domestic energy production and jobs. The Europeans have taken note. The drive to open America’s offshore wind industry has attracted Europe’s biggest renewable energy companies, who see the U.S. East Coast as a new frontier after years of success across the Atlantic.,,, “This would be American produced energy, and American jobs,” said Vincent DeVito, energy policy advisor to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. “It fits well with the America First agenda.” >click to read<14:32

Trump administration replaces Obama-era ocean policy

The Trump administration has revoked an environmental and economic management program for the United States’ coastal ecosystems and replaced it with a program that the president says “streamlines federal coordination.” The National Ocean Policy (NOP), created by an executive order by President Barack Obama in July 2010, established a comprehensive program to ensure the sustainability of the country’s coastal areas and the health of oceans and the Great Lakes. According to a White House news release issued Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s repeal of the 2010 executive order was done because of “excessive bureaucracy created by the previous administration,” citing the National Ocean Council’s 27 departments and agencies. >click to read<17:17

From the White House – Executive Order Regarding the Ocean Policy to Advance the Economic, Security, and Environmental Interests of the United States – >click to read<

Administration looks offshore for wind energy boom

The Trump administration is “bullish” about offshore wind, working with governors in the Northeast to transform what was once a fringe and costly investment into America’s newest energy-producing industry. “When the president said energy dominance, it was made without reference to a type of energy,” Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke told the Washington Examiner in an interview. “It was making sure as a country we are American energy first and that includes offshore wind. There is enormous opportunity, especially off the East Coast, for wind. I am very bullish.” On a recent tour of coastal states, Zinke found “magnitudes” more interest in offshore wind than oil and natural gas drilling. >click to read<11:20

Trump administration defends Obama’s Atlantic monument – Requests Judge dismiss Fishermen’s lawsuit

The Trump administration on Tuesday defended an underwater monument established by former President Barack Obama to protect marine life in the Atlantic Ocean and asked a judge to dismiss a lawsuit from fishermen trying to eliminate it. The fishing groups sued in federal court in Washington, challenging the creation of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument by the Democratic former president in 2016. It’s a 5,000-square-mile area off of New England that contains fragile deep sea corals and vulnerable species of marine life, such as right whales. >click to read< 13:22

President Trump to make decision on monuments by April 16

President Donald Trump has until April 16th to either follow his Interior secretary’s recommendations to relax fishing restrictions in marine monuments key for American Samoa and Atlantic coast fishermen or let a court challenge to the monuments proceed. A federal court has agreed to allow Atlantic fishermen and lobstermen to proceed with a lawsuit that seeks to reverse Obama-era protections for the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts National Monument off the New England coast. But the case could have a direct bearing on when or how American Samoa’s tuna industry gets relief from fishing restrictions in the Pacific Remote Islands and Rose Atoll marine monuments. >click to read<16:02

Zinke acknowledges opposition to oil, Feds seek offshore wind off NY/ NJ, 2 areas off Mass available

The federal agency in charge of leasing land for alternative energy in the ocean is looking for companies interested in building wind turbines in shallow waters between Long Island and the New Jersey coast. >click to read< The Department of the Interior has announced that two additional areas located off Massachusetts are now available for commercial wind energy development. >click to read< On the same day his agency announced two additional areas located off Massachusetts are now available for commercial wind energy development, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke  acknowledged there is “a lot of opposition” to President Donald Trump’s plan to open  most of the nation’s coastline to oil and gas drilling. >click to read<20:03

Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s Failure to Protect Pacific Humpback Whales Threatened by Fishing Gear, Ship Strikes, Oil Spills

The Center for Biological Diversity, Turtle Island Restoration Network and Wishtoyo Foundation today sued the Trump administration for failing to protect humpback whale habitat in the Pacific Ocean, where the animals face threats from fisheries, ship strikes and oil spills. Today’s lawsuit, filed in federal district court in San Francisco, aims to force the National Marine Fisheries Service to follow the Endangered Species Act’s requirement to designate critical habitat within one year of listing a species as threatened or endangered and not authorize actions that,,, >click to read< 16:12

U.S. States Slow Trump’s Offshore Drilling Expansion Plan

The Trump administration’s plan to broadly expand drilling in U.S. offshore waters is moving slowly due to opposition from coastal states and indifference from oil companies that have turned their focus to other opportunities. The administration hopes encouraging U.S. energy development outside of shale oilfields will further its goal of “energy dominance.” But existing Obama administration lease rules remain in place through 2022 unless the new rules gain approval. The Department of the Interior this year proposed opening vast new acreage in the U.S. outer continental shelf to drilling. >click to read< 08:56

Court Slaps Down The First Legal Challenge To Trump’s ‘1-In, 2-Out’ Policy

A federal court dismissed a coalition of liberal activists’ lawsuit against President Donald Trump’s executive order that two regulations be repealed for every new one that’s proposed, also known as the “1-in, 2-out” policy. Public Citizen, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Communications Workers of America (CWA) argued Trump’s deregulation order was unconstitutional, but the D.C. district court ruled the plaintiffs failed to show Trump’s executive order caused any injury that would give them standing to sue. >click to read< 12:10

Moulton: NOAA cuts ‘recipe for disaster’

President Donald Trump’s proposed budget for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration cuts more than $1 billion from the agency that manages the nation’s fisheries and coastal ecosystems, explores space and forecasts weather and changing environmental conditions. On Thursday, U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton of Salem criticized the proposed cuts, saying the proposed 14 percent decline reflects the administration’s shallow understanding of the importance of NOAA’s programs to coastal communities,,, He characterized the president’s budget proposal as a “a guideline” and said it will be up to Congress to determine the ultimate levels of funding through the appropriation process. >click to read< 20:31

Washington State: Council unanimously opposes coastal oil and gas drilling

The Ocean Shores City Council on Monday unanimously adopted a resolution that opposes offshore oil and gas activities off the coast in response to a pending Trump administration proposal to permit drilling in most U.S. continental-shelf waters. “Our Washington coast is one of the most wonderful places in this entire world,” said Ocean Shores Mayor Crystal Dingler.,, Larry Thevik, the president of the Washington Dungeness Crab Fishing Association and a 47-year resident of Ocean Shores, said he was also speaking on behalf of the Washington Trollers Association and the Westport Charterboat Association. >click here to read< 17:24

DFO minister: No compromise on independence of inshore fishery

Canada’s Minister of Fisheries and Oceans says there will be no backtracking on measures to preserve the independence of Atlantic Canada’s inshore fishery.”I’m not interested in weakening or diluting these policies,” Dominic LeBlanc told CBC News in a wide-ranging interview Tuesday. LeBlanc was responding for the first time to overtures from lobster buyers and plant owners in southwestern Nova Scotia who have floated schemes that would allow the companies ownership of a fisherman’s catch while somehow maintaining the independence of the fisherman.,,LeBlanc declined to discuss the impact on Atlantic Canada’s seafood exports to the United States in the event the Trump administration pulls out of the North American Free Trade Agreement. >click here to read<21:29 

Nearly every governor with ocean coastline opposes Trump administration drilling proposal

The Trump administration’s proposal to open vast portions of US coastline to oil drilling was met with ferocious opposition from a number of the coastal governors it would affect. At least one governor, Florida’s Rick Scott, a Republican, asked for and received a waiver from the administration. That move by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke drew accusations of favoritism, which have been denied. But the fact remains that nearly every governor with ocean coastline opposes drilling off their coast or, in one case, has concerns. >click here to read<11:12 

Why the Trump offshore drilling plan is another Canada-U.S. complication

As much as half a million kilograms of haddock caught on the rich fishing grounds of Georges Bank this weekend will be landed in ports in southwestern Nova Scotia, as the winter fishery gets underway after a storm-delayed start to 2018.,,, Canada and the U.S. jointly manage fisheries on Georges Bank through various trans-boundary committees that agree on quotas, resource sharing and stock health. >click here to read<

Drilling plan may not change much locally but still worries fishermen

Last week the Trump administration proposed to drastically increase the amount of Alaska waters open for oil and gas leasing. Along with keeping Cook Inlet open, it would also make areas near Kodiak and the Gulf of Alaska available for drilling, both of which are currently closed. Yet, it’s unclear if companies will be interested in drilling there even if the plan is approved. Still, the move worries local environmentalists and fishermen. click here to read the story 10:54 

Trump administration’s offshore drilling plans make one Nova Scotia fish processor very nervous

A U.S. government plan to expand offshore drilling in its waters could give oil and gas companies access to ecologically sensitive areas, including the American half of Georges Bank, a prospect that makes one Nova Scotia fish processor very nervous. Georges Bank is a large elevated area of sea floor that separates the Gulf of Maine from the Atlantic Ocean and is an important breeding ground for several fish species. It’s an area far too important to the fishing industry to be endangered by drilling, according to Nathan Blades, the general manager of Sable Fish Packers on Cape Sable Island in southwest Nova Scotia. click here to read the story 13:35

Trump admin intends to roll back ban on offshore drilling

The Trump administration Thursday announced plans to roll back a ban on new offshore drilling off the coasts of Florida and California and is considering more than 40 sites for leasing of natural gas and oil production. The proposal is yet another blow to the Obama-era environmental agenda, and it has the potential to open up nearly all US federal waters that were previously protected. The proposal would increase drilling sites off the coasts of Alaska and in the Gulf of Mexico. It would reinstate leasing sites in Pacific and Atlantic waters. click here to read the story 16:53

Agreement reached in lawsuit over extension of red snapper season

The U.S. Department of Commerce has reached an agreement with two environmental advocacy groups that took it to court over a decision to extend the recreational red snapper fishing season by 39 days in the Gulf of Mexico. Under the agreement, approved Wednesday, 20 December by U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, the government announced that the extension of the 2017 season “was a one-time action” it has opted not to defend the decision at this time. Further, government officials plan to give a 2018 recreational red snapper season projection by early February and finalize the length of the season around 20 April.  Ocean Conservancy and the Environmental Defense Fund,,, click here to read the story 09:54

Trump Administration Facing Battle Over New England Marine Monument

“We will challenge in court any action to roll back the Coral Canyons and Seamounts monument and we expect to win,” said Priscilla Brooks, director of ocean conservation for the Boston-based Conservation Law Foundation. But Jon Williams, owner of the Atlantic Red Crab Company in New Bedford, Mass., said he and other commercial fishermen who have harvested crabs and deep sea lobsters from the Coral Canyons region for decades are delighted with the Trump administration’s proposal. click here to read the story 08:22

SEEKING HELP: West Coast Senators ask for disaster aid for fisheries in the next 2017 disaster funding package.

In a bipartisan push led by Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley, all eight West Coast Senators—Merkley, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) — today called on congressional leaders and the Trump administration to include disaster aid for fisheries in the next 2017 disaster funding package. click here to read the story 15:00

Report on U.S. Marine Sanctuary Oil Drilling Sent to White House, Not Released to Public

U.S. Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross sent a report to the White House on Wednesday containing recommendations on whether to change the boundaries of 11 marine sanctuaries to allow more oil and gas drilling, but the report was not made public. Commerce reviewed sanctuaries containing 425 million acres of coral reefs, marine mammal habitats and pristine beaches, as part of an administration strategy to open new areas to oil and gas drilling. click here to read the story 07:18

Trump official says government won’t stand in the way of removing Klamath dams

After the Obama administration helped broker a deal last year to tear down four dams straddling the California-Oregon border, practically everyone involved figured President Donald Trump would undermine it. They assumed Trump would side with conservative activists and Republican congressmen who thwarted an earlier version of the same agreement in 2015. Those assumptions are proving wrong. The fight over the Klamath River is one of country’s fiercest, longest-running water wars. click here to read the story 08:26

Oregon, California senators step up pressure on Trump administration to approve salmon emergency cash

Oregon and California’s four senators, all Democrats, stepped up the pressure on the Trump administration Wednesday to approve disaster assistance for salmon fishermen along 200 miles of coastline. In April, the Pacific Fishery Management Council, which manages coastal salmon seasons, recommended closing coastal and commercial salmon fishing entirely along an area equal to roughly half of Oregon’s coastline. Govs. Kate Brown of Oregon and Jerry Brown of California requested emergency funding relief in May, to no avail. click here to read the story 11:51

If Trump Doesn’t Revoke ‘Illegal’ National Monument Created By Obama, The Courts Might

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke recommended President Donald Trump change the boundaries or management of 10 national monuments, including ocean monuments created by the Obama administration. Zinke asked Trump to allow commercial fishing at Obama-designated ocean monuments in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, but five of those monuments the Department of the Interior reviewed could be declared unlawful. Earlier this year, the Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) filed suit against the Trump administration on behalf of New England fisherman opposed to the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts monument off the New England coast. click here to read the story 14:03

Zinke tells Trump – Shrink at least 4 national monuments and modify a half-dozen others

The secretary’s set of recommendations also would change the way all 10 targeted monuments are managed. It emphasizes the need to adjust the proclamations to address concerns of local officials or affected industries, saying the administration should permit “traditional uses” now restricted within the monuments’ boundaries, such as grazing, logging, coal mining and commercial fishing.,, The White House is reviewing the recommendations and has not reached a final decision on them. click here to read the story 08:58

Trump’s monument review is as secretive as Obama’s designations

Presidential use of the Antiquities Act is ripe for abuse, as major decisions impacting vast public lands, natural resources, property rights, livelihoods and private industry are left to the sole discretion of the president. After such a unilateral designation, the president does not need to substantiate his decision in any meaningful way, beyond the use of a few magic words on the face of the proclamation. It seemed like a positive step when President Trump in April issued an executive order seeking public input for a review of national monument designations over the last two decades. But it now appears that any hope for additional transparency may have been premature. click here to read the story 19:25

Congress Picks Sides on Trump Plan to Expand Offshore Drilling

President Donald Trump’s plan to expand offshore oil drilling spurred dueling letters from members of Congress last week, 118 of whom say the plan is critical for U.S. energy security, while 69 others doubt it — plus nearly 18,000 letters of public comment, most of them opposing expanded drilling. Only 6 percent of the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf is available for leasing to oil and gas drillers from 2017 to 2022, under a drilling plan completed in the final days of President Barack Obama’s presidency. The shelf is 1.7 billion acres of submerged federal land from 3 nautical miles off the coastline, state-regulated waters, to 200 nautical miles out. click here to read the story 11:06