With a court decision released on April 8 which denied the Commonwealth’s claims, Coakley’s lawsuit has run its predicted course. It’s time to recognize that we need real solutions such as stopping overfishing, protecting habitat, reducing bycatch and improving ocean management.
In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, a slew of legal decisions on groundfish regulations; new research suggests more than 20% of seafood imported into the US is caught illegally; the Senate ratifies treaties to cut down on pirate fishing; environmental groups sue to expand protected habitat for right whales; ecosystem-based management could help respond to climate change; GMRI and the Bigelow Lab compete for funding for real-time monitoring; scallop fisheries in Maine and Nantucket Bay have a strong year; recovering alewife populations may mean a new fishery, too; Maine’s elver season begins with new regulations; an effort to clean up ghost gear is successful.
If you’ve been following the (mis)management of river herring over the last few years, you may not even be surprised at the latest shenanigans of the NOAA fisheries officials: a delay tactic in the form of a “working group.” This powerless, unmanageably large, and unfairly stacked “Technical Expert Working Group (TEWG)” is purportedly meant to comprehensively address the multifaceted problems facing river herring. But it looks more like an effort to study these little fish to death, instead of taking meaningful action to bring them back from the brink.
On Friday, the U.S. District Court in Washington, DC issued a pair of rulings concerning NOAA’s proposals for allowing new fishing in long standing protected areas and increasing catch levels above legal limits. The rulings were in response to challenges brought by Conservation Law Foundation with Earthjustice.
In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, the IPCC releases a new report on climate change, including marine impacts; NOAA is seeking comments on developing its own sustainable seafood certification; Maine’s DMR warns lobster fishermen to prepare for a decline in landings; dogfish are abundant in the Gulf of Maine, but there’s no market for them; alleged culprits in last summer’s Cape Cod oyster thefts appear in court; the Large Pelagics Research Center hosts a series of talks in April; NOAA’s Beaufort Laboratory may close; a Maine elver fisherman pleads guilty to underreporting his $700,000 income.