Forest Knolls, CA – The recent discovery of a nine inch long non-native spiny softshell turtle in Marin’s Lagunitas Creek Watershed has caused environmental groups and state agencies to warn of the potential harmful impact on native species, especially coho salmon and steelhead trout. This recent discovery adds to a growing list of alien species ranging from channel catfish to bullfrogs to large mouth bass. Groups are calling on the public to not release non-native species, such as unwanted exotic pets, into the wild and remind them that such releases are illegal
Seattle–The Seattle District Court has denied a motion to suspend its January 2004 injunction prohibiting the spraying of certain pesticides near salmon streams in California, Oregon and Washington. The pesticide industry group CropLife and grower groups had requested a stay that would remove safeguards for salmon while they appeal the ruling to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
San Francisco, CA – Today, in Hawai`i, the industry-dominated Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council and NOAA Fisheries held a press conference to announce the reopening of a fishery that NOAA Fisheries had previously closed because the fishery was killing enough Pacific leatherbacks to put them on a direct path towards extinction.
San Francisco, CA– According to its own data, the FDA’s new consumer advisory released today will actually put women and children at serious risk from mercury poisoning. The FDA advisory specifically suggests that it is safe “to eat up to 6 ounces of albacore tuna per week, which, by its own data, is known to contain three times as much mercury on average as chunk light tuna. Environmentalists are calling on the FDA to remove albacore tuna from the list of safe seafood and to require warning signs at seafood counters across the country.
March 11, 2004—Today, the US Fisheries Service issued new rules banning California longline fishing from targeting swordfish from a huge swath of the Pacific Ocean. The final rule comes on the heels of an August 2003 decision by the federal Ninth Circuit Court concurring with environmentalists that the Fisheries Service had failed to conduct the proper environmental review before issuing permits to the fishery.
Website Gives Consumers Important Mercury Consumption Information
San Francisco– A California-based nonprofit organization today released an easy-to-use online seafood mercury calculator (http://www.gotmercury.org ) to help consumers make informed choices about their seafood consumption. The calculator allows consumers to calculate what their blood mercury levels would be from eating mercury–contaminated seafood and compare it to values that are considered safe by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Two environmental organizations filed suit in Federal District Court today seeking to protect the Atlantic white marlin under the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”). The suit, filed by the Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network was brought against the National Marine Fisheries Service, (“NMFS”), an agency within the Department of Commerce charged with managing fisheries and protecting marine species under the ESA.
JANUARY 5, 2004—The California based environmental organization Sea Turtle Restoration Project compliments the “Northeast Distant Fishery Sea Turtle Bycatch Reduction Project” announced yesterday by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as a move in the right direction to solve the problem of sea turtle bycatch. However, the plan itself will not stop the slide of the leatherback sea turtle toward extinction.
In a victory for local environmentalists seeking to protect endangered species habitat, Marin County Superior Court Judge Lynn Duryee has issued a Tentative Ruling against the County of Marin, the Board of Supervisors and landowner Joshua Hedlund. If allowed to stand, and if subsequently pursued by Marin environmental organizations, the ruling could be a cornerstone for widespread changes in County planning practices.
SAN FRANCISCO – Today, a group of 12 environmental and public health organizations submitted a formal Petition to the California Department of Health Services (DHS) urging the state to widely release a public health advisory and to take action to educate Californians about the dangers of consuming mercury-contaminated seafood.