Hastings: Imperial President Moves Forward with Ocean Zoning
News Release from US House Committee on Natural Resources
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 17, 2014 - House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) released the following statement regarding President Obama’s announcement of overreaching Executive action to unilaterally lock-up huge portions of the Pacific Ocean:
"For years the Obama Administration has threatened to impose ocean zoning to shut down our oceans, and today the President is making good on that threat. This is yet another example of how an Imperial President is intent on taking unilateral action, behind closed doors, to impose new regulations and layers of restrictive red-tape. Oceans, like our federal lands, are intended to be multiple-use and open for a wide range of economic activities that includes fishing, recreation, conservation, and energy production. It appears this Administration will use whatever authorities – real or made-up – to close our ocean and coastal areas with blatant disregard for possible economic consequences.
“This Administration is creating an unworkable patchwork of management regimes that will hurt our economy and further strain our enforcement capabilities. The State Department just completed negotiating several science-based international fishery management agreements in the Pacific and is working on changes to an existing international agreement to allow U.S. tuna boats to have access to waters in the South Pacific. This announcement undercuts all of that work and will likely make the U.S. tuna fleet even less viable, meaning in the not-too-distant future all of America’s tuna will be caught by foreign vessels.”
Link: Printable PDF of this Document
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Scientist: Obama Plan has no conservation benefit other than to penalize US fishermen
HNN: Expanding the marine preserve out Western would mean including areas around the deepest point of the ocean, the Marianas Trench, near the island of Guam.
But it would also push into areas where Hawaii's long liners and other U.S. fishermen fish
near Johnston atoll, Palmyra Island as well as Jarvis and Holland.
"It has no conservation benefit other than to penalize.U.S, fishermen,” said Paul Dalzelle, senior scientist for the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council.
Scientists of the council met in Honolulu Tuesday.
It was a prelude to next week's full council meeting which will include members from Guam and Samoa.
It is expected to take a strong position against the marine preserve plan.
Members argue that expanding the no-fishing zone is not only bad for businesss, but will not help tuna and sharks that migrate.
"There are already 50 nautical-mile closures around those areas. It’s called part of the marine national monument. They are already protecting the coral reefs, all the near shore fish, precious corals, coral reef fish and sharks pushing out to the 200 nautical miles. It will have no major conservation benefit," said Dalzelle.
The council believes the move could also leave much of the protected areas open to fishing from foreign fishers who are already banned from U.S. waters.
Fewer U.S. fishermen in the area, means fewer eyes on the water.
read ... Fishermen Say No to Obama
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NYT: Mr. Obama’s Ocean Monument
WaPo: Obama will propose vast expansion of Pacific Ocean marine sanctuary
TP: Obama’s Plan to Protect Marine Life Will Also Affect the Seafood on Your Dinner Plate
Fox: Obama aims to create world's largest ocean preserve
BW: Wide Swaths of Pacific to Get Shield in Obama Plan
AP: Obama Like Bush, but more: Setting Aside Massive Pacific Ocean Preserve
UPI: Kiribati to forbid fishing in 160,000 sq miles of Pacific Ocean