Audubon Action Alert! Seabirds At Risk From Fisheries Management

by Larry Jordan on August 6, 2008

Laysan Albatross

Laysan Albatross photo by Mike Yip

Audubon Action Alert! Save Ocean Ecosystems and Their Seabirds.

The White House has recently proposed a new rule for oversight of marine fisheries. The new rule would gut the protections that the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) has long provided ocean ecosystems and the seabirds and other wildlife that depend on them. Under the new rule, the ability of the public to have input into the future of our oceans would be severely limited and oversight of marine fisheries would be largely given over to regional fishery management councils — the equivalent of having the fox guard the hen house.

Tell the National Marine Fisheries Service that you oppose the new rule and want to keep the National Environmental Policy Act and citizen input strong 

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires government agencies to analyze the likely environmental effects of their actions and to seek public input into their decisions. The proposed rule would exempt certain categories of fisheries from environmental review altogether and weaken the requirements for environmental reviews of fisheries across the board. The proposed new rule would also severely limit the ability of the public to give input into any decisions made.

NEPA’s review process has successfully protected ocean ecosystems in the past. By mandating that impacts to birds and other ocean wildlife be considered when fishing regulations are made, NEPA can help birds and other wildlife while creating a more sustainable ocean system. Nineteen of the twenty-two species of albatross are already threatened with extinction due to long-line fishing techniques that accidentally catch and drown the birds. On the East Coast of the United States, the rufa Red Knot is threatened by overfishing of its main food source, horseshoe crabs. It is vital for our seabirds that we do not weaken environmental oversight of the fishing industry.

Red Knot

Red Knot photo by Bob Sheldon

Submit a public comment opposing adoption of the new, weakened rule by the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Become a wildlife advocate.  Join the “Audubon Action” and make a difference!

Happy Birding!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Klaus August 7, 2008 at 5:52 am

Good info! Did act!
Cheers, Klaus


Tommy V August 7, 2008 at 8:33 am

very nice post. Love the pictures too.


Larry August 8, 2008 at 10:30 am

Hi Klaus,

Thanks for checkin in and taking ACTION!


Larry August 8, 2008 at 10:31 am

Hi Tommy,

Thanks! I took a peak at your blog too. It looks great. I love the Loon photos!


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