Daily Archives: May 22, 2024

Fishing boat rams pier, several boats near Seattle’s Ballard Bridge

Crews responded to the west end of the Ballard Bridge after a fishing vessel crashed into a pier and several other boats Wednesday afternoon. According to the United States Coast Guard (USCG), at around 10:30 a.m., a 73-foot fishing boat crashed into the pier, damaging several other moored vessels. At around 12:28 p.m., the United States Coast Guard (USCG) announced that pollution teams were at the scene, reducing any potential environmental impacts. 4 photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 20:41

A whale washed up dead. Greens blame a Democrat.

Environmentalists say Chellie Pingree’s defense of the Maine lobster industry could imperil a critically endangered whale. Doing what greens want would likely send the Democrat to political extinction. Conservation advocates are publicly pressuring Pingree to overturn a law that protects Maine’s prized lobster fishery. The calls come after one of only 360 remaining North Atlantic right whales washed up dead in February entangled in Maine lobstering rope. “I think it is a little bit more of a black mark on an otherwise fairly good conservation record,” said Brett Hartl, the government affairs director at the Center for Biological Diversity, on Pingree’s support of the pro-lobstering law. It’s a rare rebuke of a longtime ally who has a near-pristine voting record on environmental issues. Pingree says she has no plans to reverse course, but the incident highlights how lawmakers continue to balance environmental concerns with the everyday lives of their constituents. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 17:57

Shrimpers displaced as Fort Myers Beach Fire Department plans new training facility

The state of the shrimping industry on San Carlos Island has been a topic of concern for months. A shrimping building that once stood on the island is now a pile of rubble, recently demolished as the Fort Myers Beach Fire Department prepares to purchase the land. Virgilio Rijo, a shrimper who has been working these waters for over ten years, expressed his frustration. “Everybody here feels like they’re being pushed out,” he said. As the number of docking and processing facilities dwindles, Rijo and other shrimpers are beginning to feel the impact. “It’s just slowly shrinking, and everything that the shrimping business has is slowly shrinking, from the waterfront standpoint,” Rijo added, highlighting the challenges facing the industry. Video, more, >>CLICK TO READ<<  14:02

NOAA Seeks Public Comments on Exempted Fishing Permit Application for an On-Demand Trap/Pot/Gillnet Gear Study

NOAA Fisheries is requesting public comment on an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) application submitted by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC).  The EFP would provide an exemption from federal lobster, red crab, and gillnet gear marking requirements and allow up to 180 lobster vessels and up to 20 total gillnet, red crab, and black sea bass vessels to test alternatives to static vertical lines (also referred to as on-demand or ropeless gear), including lobster trap vessels fishing up to 300 total trawls in Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Restricted Areas with no static vertical lines. more, Full details on the proposal can be found in the Federal Register Notice inside. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 12:31

Crucial vote on total closure of 10% of EU fishing grounds

A pivotal vote is due to take place today as EU Member States vote on proposals to establish zero-fishing zones accounting for 10% of EU waters. The industry states that such a closure would serve to hit political targets without protecting ecologically sensitive habitats, describing the Commission’s strategy as a ‘shot in the dark.’ The Commission’s proposal is for a new objective which aims to place 10% of the EU’s seabed in ‘reference areas’ free from any human pressure in order to assess its natural variability. The European Bottom Fishing Alliance (EBFA) wants to see a postponement of the vote, given the lack of any impact assessment on fishing activities, the upcoming revision of the Law setting these objectives, and the current transitory political period with EU Parliamentary elections about to take place. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 10:54

SLO County judge rules against local fishermen

A San Luis Obispo County judge last week rejected a request from Morro Bay and Port San Luis fishermen for a preliminary injunction to stop wind energy companies from surveying the ocean floor. Signed into law in Oct. 2023, Senate Bill 286 requires the statewide strategy for wind energy to include best practices for addressing impacts to commercial and recreational fisheries. Local fishermen argue wind companies have failed to follow best practices because they have not put protocols in place to protect the fishing industry. San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Craig van Rooyen found the requirements in Senate Bill 286 vague. Specifically, when the protocols and protections need to be in place: before or after work is completed. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 08:48

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 38′ Calvin Beal Lobster Boat, 450HP Cummins

To review specifications, information, and 30 photos’, >click here<, To see all the boats in this series, >click here< 07:26

Wind Farm Opponents to Host Rally in Ocean City

Opponents of offshore wind farms are holding a rally Saturday to continue their fight against what they believe could harm the environment, the tourism industry, commercial fishing operations and marine life. The second annual “Stop Offshore Wind” rally will begin at 9:30 a.m. in Mark Soifer Park, across from City Hall in Ocean City. The rally will proceed with a march across the Route 52 causeway bridge connecting Ocean City and Somers Point. Danish wind farm developer Orsted announced on Oct. 31 that it was halting its Ocean Wind 1 and Ocean Wind 2 projects. Representatives of the company maintained that it wouldn’t be financially feasible to do the projects. In a rally flyer advertising Saturday’s event, opponents cautioned that they must continue to speak up against wind farms with the words, “The fight is not over,” despite Orsted withdrawing from the local project.  Photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 06:28