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D.C. Report: Drift Gillnets

The fight to end the use of drift gillnets is going national.

Turtle Island Restoration Network recently spoke in Washington D.C. at a congressional briefing, hosted by Congressman Jared Huffman’s office.

We let Congress know that drift gillnets are curtains of death – fishermen who use them discard over 60% of the animals that are caught. This is an unnecessary waste of precious ocean life.

California has a reputation for being a state that protects the environment. You’d think that California’s coast is the last place where mile-long drift gillnets are used to catch swordfish. The California driftnet fishery, however, is killing or injuring approximately seven times more whales and dolphins than all other observed fisheries in California, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska combined.

The drift gillnet fishery is managed jointly by California and at the federal level. California is currently facilitating discussions between a group of fishermen and environmental organizations. If California is unable to find a solution to protect ocean wildlife, federal action may be the solution. Congress can take action to stop drift gillnet fishing. Turtle Island Restoration Network is taking the first steps to pursue federal action on drift gillnets by educating members of Congress about this dire problem for dolphins and whales.

Let your congressperson and senators know that it’s important for them to work on this issue. You can find their contact information at the following sites:

If you want help crafting a message or making contact, feel free to contact our Advocacy & Policy Director at cburdyshaw@seaturtles.org.

 

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