An infographic explaining the impact of the driftnet fishery on whales, dolphins, and other marine mammals.
More than 6,700 Volunteers Picked Up More than 100,000 Pounds of Trash from Texas Beaches During Spring Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup
6,757 volunteers showed up at 27 locations to remove 110,663 pounds of trash from 151 miles of Texas coastline.
Turtle Island’s new report ‘The Economic Argument Against the California Driftnet Fishery’ outlines how the California driftnet fishery costs more to operate than the wealth that is created by the fishery. The just-released-report examines new data that shows the cost of regulating this dirty fishery would substantially decrease if the California swordfish fishery used more sustainable gear instead of mile-long driftnets.
An infograph describing the regulatory history of the California driftnet fishery and its continued take of marine mammals.
The Associated Press was just awarded a Pulitzer Prize, given for excellence in journalism, for their coverage of severe labor abuses tied to the supply of seafood to the U.S. Their series of stories revealed that U.S. supermarkets and restaurants are selling shrimp that is peeled by slaves. The series also described some of the conditions these shrimp peelers endure, including emotional and physical abuse, being locked into the sheds where they work, and working 16 hour shifts with their hands in ice water.
The Gulf of Mexico is my history, my home and my future. She entertains me on her beaches and bays. She feeds me healthy and delicious food- Gulf fishes, crabs and oysters. She delights me with her beauty and challenges me with her winds and waves. She connects me with the world.
Turtle Island Restoration Network recognizes that we cannot protect the oceans and marine wildlife by ourselves. We count on numerous caring people to join
Growing up on the Texas gulf coast, I was introduced to the Gulf of Mexico at an early age. It started with my grandfather and parents owning homes along the gulf coast, so I was raised to enjoy and respect the ocean and all of its sea life.
Senate Bill 1114 to Phase out the California Driftnet Fishery and Protect Marine Wildlife Moves Through Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water
Today the California Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water voted 6-0 to support Senate Bill (SB) 1114 to phase out the use of mile-long driftnets in California waters. The innovative bill sponsored by Turtle Island Restoration Network and authored by Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) lays out a commonsense transition plan to phase out the use of these mile-long nets to a new, more environmentally responsible fishing method using deep-set buoy gear.
This morning our legislative effort to phase out the deadly California driftnet fishery passed its first hurdle! Turtle Island Restoration Network was in Sacramento today to speak in favor of our sponsored bill, Senate Bill 11114, which Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) authored.
People make all the difference. In this post, we are highlighting one of our Ocean Heroes: Erin Politz.
Our Executive Director Todd Steiner reflects on his recent trip to Ecuador to collaborate with fellow scientists and to D.C. to see the food co-op he helped to form in his college days.
Right off the coast of California, a deadly fishery is having profound impacts on the ocean. And some of the worst victims of the driftnet fishery are whales, dolphins, and sea lions. But you can help put an end to these “curtains of death” by taking one simple action.
More than 45 climate, conservation, indigenous and coastal organizations (including Turtle Island) representing the major coastal regions of the United States filed a legal petition today calling on President Obama to align U.S. energy policy with his climate goals by issuing an executive order to end new oil and gas lease auctions in federally controlled oceans — including the Arctic, Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.
Turtle Island Restoration Network Sponsors Bill to Phase out California Driftnet Fishery to Protect Marine Wildlife
Turtle Island is the sponsor of a new bill authored by Senator Ben Allen designed to protect California’s marine wildlife by ending the use of deadly driftnets in California. The legislation, Senate Bill (SB) 1114, will end the most harmful fishing practice on the West Coast by transitioning California’s swordfish industry away from driftnets to more sustainable fishing technology.
Turtle Island Restoration Network recently signed onto a letter supporting AB 2002, which would dramatically improve transparency and accountability at the California Coastal Commission. The Coastal Commission
Sen. Ben Allen Introduces Bill to Protect Marine Wildlife by Transitioning Swordfish Industry to More Sustainable Technology
enator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) announced today he will author legislation to protect California’s marine wildlife by ending the use of deadly drift gillnets off our coast.
Protesters took to the rainy streets of the California State Capitol this afternoon during the on going Pacific Fisheries Management Council (PMFC) meeting in which swordfish management policies are under consideration.
Media Advisory: Protest March Planned at Pacific Fisheries Management Meeting to Call for Closure of California Driftnet Fishery
Today (Sunday, March 13) Turtle Island will be hosting a peaceful protest march in front of the Doubletree Hilton in Sacramento (the site of the upcoming Pacific Fisheries Management Council Meeting).
Today, the Lieutenant Governor of California Gavin Newsom and Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) penned a thoughtful op-ed in the Sacramento Bee calling on fisheries managers to phase out deadly driftnets.
Yesterday, a group of seven legislators led by Senator Ben Allen (D – Santa Monica) sent a letter to federal fishery officials asking them to phase out the use of driftnets in California.
Turtle Island’s International Director Randall Arauz has been named as a PEW Marine Conservation Fellow. Arauz is one of five distinguished scientists and conservationists from around the world named as a 2016 Pew Marine Conservation Fellow. Arauz plans to use his fellowship to strengthen the sustainability of marine protected areas, and to foster shark conservation in Central America.
Turtle Island signed onto a letter with Defenders of Wildlife opposing H.R. 2406, the so-called “Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act of 2015.”
On February 10th, the California Coastal Commission for the first time in its 43 year history fired its executive director, Dr. Charles Lester, throwing one of the most powerful governmental agencies in the nation into turmoil by undermining the authority of its independent staff that evaluates coastal development proposals.
An endangered baby river dolphin died after it was passed around in a frenzy by beach goers wanting to take ‘selfies’ with the wild animal. The dolphin also faces deadly driftnets at sea.
Turtle Island welcomes Randall Arauz, a world renowned and award-winning biologist, to our team in the newly created position of International Director.
It all started as an idea – an idea to make a video to share the truth about the deadly driftnet fishery for swordfish operating off of California’s coast and harming marine wildlife like sea turtles and whales. But the idea only became a reality when actors Matthew King, Dana Padgett, and Christopher Shelton lent their time, expertise, and acting chops to make this project a reality, and help expose the dangers of eating driftnet caught swordfish. Take a moment to read about and get to know the stars of our PSA by reading their bios below.
Turtle Island’s Public Service Announcement Calls Consumer Attention to California’s Driftnet Fishery for Swordfish, One of Worst in the Nation for Marine Mammals
Turtle Island released a Public Service Announcement video (watch here) to call consumers attention to the impact of ordering a California driftnet caught swordfish.
The ocean and marine conservation organization, Turtle Island Restoration Network launched a new campaign to call for a phase out of California’s driftnet fishery.
Driftnets have been called “curtains of death,” and California’s fishery seems to meet this definition. Setting out huge, mile-long nets out to float in the ocean off the coast of California, it indiscriminately catches whatever swims into the nets.
Turtle Island Restoration Network’s new report ‘Driftnet Overview’ outlines how the California driftnet fishery for swordfish is among the most wasteful fisheries in the world in terms of bycatch (unwanted animals caught and discarded). The just-released-report examines new data that shows the driftnet fishery is a threat to marine mammals, sea turtles and sharks; targets toxic high-in-mercury fish; is a drag on California’s economy; and hampers efforts to clean up international fishing practices.
This week the Galveston Bay Estuary Program hosted a State of the Bay Symposium, bringing together nonprofits, state and federal agencies and community stakeholders to hear presentations and panel discussions on challenges and successes regarding the health of Galveston Bay.
Bigeye Tuna is in trouble. This highly valued sushi fish is being overfished in the Pacific and has sunk to its lowest historical levels. So why has the quota been increased for Hawaii’s longliners?
Our accomplishments are only possible with your support, and with the action of our more than 200,000 members and activists. You are a key component of our work to save sea turtles, whales, dolphins, sharks, salmon, marine wildlife and our oceans! Learn about our accomplishments and see photos of the marine wildlife we’ve protected in 2015.
The Obama administration is championing the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a trade agreement between the USA and 11 other nations broadly connected by the
The holiday’s are just around the corner and if you are like me you are starting to think about what gifts to give to loved ones during winter celebrations. This year, as you prepare your gift list consider making purchases online from Smile.Amazon.com.
Protesters took to the streets this afternoon during the on going Pacific Fisheries Management Council (PMFC) meeting in which swordfish management policies are under consideration.
The California driftnet fishery for swordfish captures, harms and kills sperm whales, sea turtles, sharks, whales, dolphins and sea lions as bycatch. Only one in six animals caught by the fishery are swordfish. The fishery consists of just 20 boats, and is among the worst 20 percent of all fisheries globally.
Join us to let the Pacific Fisheries Management Council know it is time get driftnets -the invisible curtains of death- out of our California waters and stop drowning thousands of whales, dolphins, sea turtles and sharks.
Media Advisory: Protest March Planned at Pacific Fisheries Management Meeting to Call for Closure of California Driftnet Fishery
Turtle Island Restoration Network will be hosting a peaceful protest march in front of the Hyatt Regency Orange County (the site of the upcoming Pacific Fisheries Management Council Meeting) on next Sunday, November 15.
#GivingTuesday™ is a movement created to celebrate giving on the Tuesday following Cyber Monday. Join in by making a donation to Turtle Island on Dec. 1st!!
International Team of Scientists Seek to Uncover the Mysteries of the World’s Largest Fish by Tracking their Movements
Galapagos Islands are the only known location where large, female whale sharks that appear to be pregnant can be seen gathering from June-November each year. To date little is known about whale shark birthing habits or location, or their pups.
This September, the Pacific Fisheries Management Council (PFMC) issued a landmark ruling that will put in place stronger regulations for the California drift gillnet fishery for swordfish. These new policies come after years of advocacy by Turtle Island Restoration Network and our partners, and may finally set the course to phase out the use of mile-long drift gillnets in California for good.
Landmark New Rules to Protect California’s Whales, Dolphins and Sea turtles from the Drift Gillnet Fishery
The Pacific Fisheries Management Council (PFMC) adopted a strict new rule for California’s drift gillnet fishery to protect nine vulnerable marine species. The rule will institute new “hard caps” that can automatically shut the fishery down if hard limits are reached in any two-year period, reflecting a new no-nonsense approach to dealing with ongoing damage to rare and threatened species, including sperm whales, humpback whales, fin whales, green sea turtles, leatherback sea turtles, loggerhead sea turtles, olive ridley sea turtles, pilot whales and bottle nosed dolphins. In addition, the PFMC also instituted new performance standards for discards.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announced a proposal intended to streamline the petition process for listing new species as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). These “improvements” are in fact a subtle step toward rendering this important law a muddle of bureaucratic obstructions.
After much consideration I ended up picking ‘Celeste Wave Break’ by Dana Bove, the show’s founder. I love how he captured this moment when the wave is about to crash down. It’s such a unique perspective that makes the ocean almost morph into a mountain for a split second.
In honor of ocean conservation, Turtle Island Restoration Network held a “Blue Mind” Meet the Authors Reception and Book Talk on August 22 at the Dance Palace in Point Reyes Station, Calif.
Roy is one of the featured photographer’s in Photography for a Change’s incredible online show. As a quick recap for those of you who haven’t already heard, Photography for a Change, provides exquisite photographs of our natural environs.
Turtle Island Restoration Network is proud to announce a new pilot program to find illegal fishing vessels within the Marine Protected Area surrounding Cocos Island, Costa Rica. Turtle Island teamed up with DigitalGlobe’s crowdsourcing platform, Tomnod.com, to create one of the first crowd sourced, digital patrols of the marine hot-spot.
Join Turtle Island’s board and staff to meet the authors at an exclusive pre-event benefit reception and a reserved seat for the Book Talk will be included in your ticket price. Enjoy wine, beer and hearty hors d’oeuvres at the beautiful Dance Palace in West Marin. Learn more about our work and enjoy a silent auction. Your ticket purchase will support our work to protect sea turtles, dolphins, whales, sharks, salmon and our world’s oceans.
(Editor’s Note: This is the second post in a series of posts about the Photography for a Change, http://www.photographyforachange.com/, show! Check out our first
ast week I had the opportunity to visit our nation’s capital and speak about the importance of ocean and marine conservation with our legislators.
The National Marine Fisheries Service today proposed major regulations prohibiting the import of seafood into the United States from fisheries that kill whales and dolphins in excess of U.S. standards. Under the new rules, all fisheries worldwide will have to comply with essentially the same marine mammal protection requirements as U.S. fishermen or face an embargo from the lucrative U.S. seafood market.
On this trip, our team was fortunate enough to see many tiger sharks, a small whale shark, giant manta rays and mobula rays, and schools of dolphins, tuna and marlin. All in all it was an incredible showing of marine wildlife and a successful trip in terms of collecting new data.
Despite incredibly warm waters, part of the building El Niño conditions, our whale shark team, led by Turtle Island’s Science Director Alex Hearn and Jonathan Green, have finally encountered whale sharks at Darwin Arch in the Galapagos Islands.
Are you a whale watcher? Do you know you can help track whales by reporting when you see them!
Ron is one of the featured photographer’s in Photography for a Change’s incredible online show. As a quick recap for those of you who haven’t already heard, Photography for a Change, provides exquisite photographs of our natural environs. This show features four photographers who have generously donated their images and prints to support Turtle Island Restoration Network.
During a recent scientific expedition to Cocos Island National Park (May 4-15, 2015), small two and three passenger submarines known as submersibles were used to deploy acoustic listening stations at 180 m (590 ft) depth, an inflatable boat was used to catch sharks and implant acoustic tracking tags, and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, also known as drones) were used to patrol from above in search of marine wildlife below. The expedition was directed by Randall Arauz, Central American Director of the Turtle Island Restoration Network (Turtle Island), in collaboration with Costa Rica’s National System of Protected Areas (SINAC) and the Cocos Island Marine Conservation Area (ACMIC), and with the companies Alucia Productions II, Precision Integrated and Aeroval.
Turtle Island Restoration Network is proud to announce that we are teaming up with Photography for a Change to offer you high quality, fine art prints from top, emerging photographers. For a limited time you can purchase these stunning prints that put you in an ocean state of mind, liven up your walls and help protect our world’s oceans and marine wildlife!
fter years of working through United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process, the 27 non-profits that make up the High Seas Alliance finally convinced the United Nations General Assembly to begin work on a treat to better protect the High Seas and its marine biodiversity through a legally-binding treaty. The U.N. member states adopted the historic resolution on Friday, June 19, marking the shift to a new era of increased ocean governance of the High Seas.
The Sea Party Coalition represents coastal and inland cities and towns, businesses, fishermen, surfers, divers, boaters and other concerned citizens regardless of political affiliation who support a healthy and vibrant coastal economy and oppose proposed new oil surveying and drilling along the Atlantic Coast and in the U.S. Arctic Ocean.
A consortium of conservation and environmental groups are praising the Texas projects identified in the latest Early Restoration Plan proposed by the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) trustees.
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has announced it will close southern California ocean waters to drift gillnets in order to protect endangered loggerhead sea turtles. This legally mandated closure went into effect June 1 according to regulation and is prompted by current El Niño conditions–warmer than normal ocean waters. The closure will stay in effect until August 31, 2015.
So Delicious Dairy Free to Award $30,000 to best ideas that protect the planet – What’s your idea to save marine wildlife? Eugene, OR, April
A 50-foot endangered sperm whale washed ashore this morning at Pacifica Beach located near the town of Pacifica, Calif. Scientists from the Marine Mammal Center and the Academy of Sciences will perform a necropsy on the whale to discover the cause of death, which is currently unknown.
Dr. Sylvia Earle & Hundreds of Scientists Sign On to Support the Phase Out of the California Drift Gillnet Fishery
For Immediate Release CONTACT: Joanna Nasar Communications Manager Turtle Island Restoration Network Cell: (415) 488-7711 Joanna@SeaTurtles.org Doug Karpa Legal Program Director Turtle Island Restoration
MEDIA ADVISORY: Drift Gillnet Fishery Status to be Considered by Pacific Fisheries Management Council on March 11, 2015
For Immediate Release CONTACT: Joanna Nasar Communications Manager Turtle Island Restoration Network Cell: (415) 488-7711 Joanna@SeaTurtles.org Doug Karpa Legal Program Director Turtle Island Restoration
Everything was moving, the water was a bit colder, there were strong currents, and giant schools of black tuna swimming in slow circles by us. We were surrounded by life.
And that’s when we met an endangered Giant Manta Ray. Giant Manta Rays are the largest of all species of Rays and are instantly recognizable underwater by their size and horn-like features (which is why they are also known raya diablo). The Ray came from the blue and gave us a show – flapping its wings and gliding with such power and grace that we had no
The Hawaii-based pelagic longline fishery targeting swordfish is treading in dangerous water by catching sea turtles (including endangered Leatherback sea turtles) according to a newly released report by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).
Dr. Sylvia Earle Signs Scientific Letter Calling for the End of the California Drift Gillnet Fishery
Please join Dr. Sylvia Earle by signing this scientist letter which outlines the devastating impact of the California Drift Gillnet fishery on our marine ecosystem, and calls for a phasing out of this destructive fishing method.
I have always believed we need to be good stewards of our environment for future generations. Our ocean and its marine wildlife is an integral component of that. The health of our ocean affects our air, food, and coastal communities. California’s health is directly tied to the health of the ocean.
Not Guilty Verdict in Murder of Costa Rican Sea Turtle Conservationist Jairo Mora Provokes International Outrage
Jairo’s brutal murder was an assault on those who protect endangered wildlife around the world. Justice for Mora is crucial to keeping wildlife and its defenders safe in Costa Rica, and won’t rest until justice is served.
A new study in the Journals of PLOS aims to unravel some of the mystery surrounding the largest fish in the sea – the whale shark. The study, led by collaborating scientist David Acuña of the Charles Darwin Foundation and co-authored by Alex Hearn of Turtle Island Restoration Network, discovered that more whale sharks than previously suspected use Darwin Island (one of the smallest islands in the Galapagos Archipelago) as a rest stop in their migration route.
It is the largest fish in the ocean with some individuals reaching sizes of up to 65ft (18m) long and weighing more than 30 tonnes, but whale sharks remain one of the enigmas of the deep.
“The public demands and the U.S. can — and by law, must — wield its tremendous purchasing power to save dolphins and whales from foreign fishing nets,” said Todd Steiner, biologist and executive director of Turtle Island Restoration Network. “We have the right to ensure that the seafood sold in the U.S. is caught in ways that minimize the death and injury of marine mammals.”
The U.S. government settled with environmental groups on Monday in the U.S. Court of International Trade, agreeing to implement legislation that ensures seafood imported into the United States meets the country’s standards for protecting whales and dolphins.
In a landmark settlement reached yesterday, the U.S. government agreed to adopt new rules that ensure seafood imported into the United States meets high standards for protecting whales and dolphins.
We should be leaders in fisheries management, not cheaters,” said Doug Karpa, of the California-based Turtle Island Restoration Network, noting that the U.S. is one of the few nations that ban the fishing in its own waters of overexploited stocks unless they are recovering.
There are fears that the gentle giant, whose flesh is prized in countries such as China, India and the Philippines, is being slowly driven towards extinction. And so little is known about them that there is huge uncertainty about how their decline can be arrested.
With the full support of Turtle Island Restoration Network, OCEANA, and other marine conservations organizations, California Assemblymember Marc Levine (D-San Rafael), Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay), Assemblymember Das Williams (D-Carpinteria), Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica), and Senator Bill Monning (D-Carmel) this week called on the Pacific Fisheries Management Council and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service to transition away from deadly California drift gillnets.
A controversial way of catching swordfish that often snags other marine life needs to end, said five politicians in a letter sent Monday to
With the full support of Turtle Island Restoration Network Assemblymembers and Senators today called on the Pacific Fisheries Management Council and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service to transition away from deadly California drift gillnets.
Last week, our researchers were able to recover a satellite tag that had been placed on a whale shark at the Galapagos Islands during
In honor of Turtle Island’s 25th year, I am excited to announce that our Board of Directors will match donations through December 31 dollar for dollar up to $25,000!
Two of our whale sharks tagged in August on a joint expedition with our collaborators Jonathan R Green, the Charles Darwin Foundation and the
Technology and more than 32,000 Square Miles of Area Closures Will Safeguard Atlantic Bluefin Tuna in the New Year
Turtle Island Restoration Network delivered more than 3,800 petitions to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries) supporting greater protections for Atlantic bluefin tuna populations. After five years of work by Turtle Island, the Pew Charitable Trusts, and our partners, on Dec. 2, 2014, NOAA Fisheries officially announced new, stricter regulations for the U.S. Atlantic bluefin tuna fishery.
hearing in a historic lawsuit brought by American and Japanese conservation groups to halt construction of a controversial U.S. military airstrip in Okinawa, Japan will be held Thursday in U.S. District Court in San Francisco. The airstrip would pave over some of the last remaining habitat for endangered Okinawa dugongs, gentle marine mammals related to manatees.
HERO: Turtle Island Restoration Network, a conservation organization headquartered in Olema, plans to file a lawsuit under the Endangered Species Act to reinstate rules
Environmental groups are suing the National Marine Fisheries Service to protect bigeye tuna that they say are being over-fished.
Conservation groups sued the National Marine Fisheries Service today over a new rule allowing the Hawaii-based longline fleet to fish beyond limits set by international agreements meant to protect bigeye tuna and other imperiled marine species.
Turtle Island signed on to an open letter addressed to Washington Governor Inslee’s commending him for his leadership on ocean acidification, and also addressed to the Department of Ecology asking that they follow suit and also take action on ocean acidification.
Turtle Island signed onto a letter to President Obama in August urging action to save the critically endangered vaquita—the smallest porpoise species found only in
Have you sent in your nomination for the 22nd Annual CVNL Heart of Marin Awards? Please nominate Turtle Island Restoration Network for the ‘Achievement in Nonprofit Excellence’ award; And please nominate a dedicated SPAWN volunteer for ‘Volunteer of the Year.’
Turtle Island Helps Gain Protections for a Record Number of Sharks Through the Convention on Migratory Species
A record number of threatened shark species, including scalloped hammerhead sharks and thresher sharks, will be granted greater international protections in part due to Turtle Island Restoration Network’s efforts at the 11th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties in Quito, Ecuador.
For Immediate Release Quito, Ecuador (Nov. 5, 2014) – The Marin-based nonprofit Turtle Island Restoration Network (SeaTurtles.Org) is in Quito, Ecuador this week to lobby
Turtle Island Attends Historic Convention on Migratory Species to Promote the Record Number of Protections Proposed for Sharks, Rays & Marine Mammals
Turtle Island Restoration Network’s Executive Director Todd Steiner and Conservation Science Director Alex Hearn are in Quito, Ecuador attending the 11th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) to lobby for the inclusion of several species needing greater protection including silky sharks, hammerhead shark, mobula ray’s and other marine species such as the polar bear.
Turtle Island Restoration Network, an international ocean and marine conservation organization headquartered in Marin, has hired Kentfield native Doug Karpa as a staff attorney.
An estimated eight sea turtles, including four critically endangered Leatherback sea turtles were killed, and eight false killer whales were injured in the last three months by the Hawaii tuna longline fishery, according the National Marine Fisheries Service newest report (.pdf).
Volunteers were busy at Turtle Island headquarters in west Marin County making signs and costumes for NorCal’s version of the People’s Climate March, which
Sara Gendel, a graduate student at Bard College in New York, joined the Turtle Island Restoration Network team this July as our newest conservation intern.
Turtle Island Restoration Network strongly opposes the siting of any Liquefied Natural Gas processing hub or any other industrial development at James Price Point/Walmadany as such a development would permanently destroy wild and sacred lands along the pristine Kimberley coast and open the door to wide scale industrialization of the coastline.
Turtle Island and conservation groups submitted comments on the petition by the state of Alaska to de-list Central North Pacific Humpbacks from the Endangered Species Act, and is working to protect Humpback whales.
Turtle Island Restoration Network signed onto a letter with other conservation groups to protect the world’s most endangered marine mammal – the vaquita. The vaquita is a critically endangered porpoise.
Thanks to Turtle Island Restoration Network’s hard work, and funding provided by the NOAA BWET grant, this years Summer Salmon Institute was a huge success. Teachers spent the week learning about hands on watershed education and it’s links to the newly adopted Next Generation Science Standards.
The Olema-based Turtle Island Restoration Network hopes to reinstate a National Marine Fisheries Service rule designed to protect endangered sperm whales from mile-long drift gillnets in ocean waters off California, which are intended to catch swordfish.
Lawsuit Launched to Reinstate Protections for Endangered Sperm Whales Threatened by California Drift Gillnet Fishery
Turtle Island Restoration Network and conservation groups today announced plans to file a lawsuit to reinstate rules designed to protect endangered sperm whales from deadly, mile-long drift gillnets in ocean waters off California.
Lawsuit Seeks to Halt Construction of U.S. Military Airstrip in Japan That Would Destroy Habitat of Endangered Okinawa Dugongs
Turtle Island Restoration Network along with American and Japanese conservation groups today asked a U.S. federal court to halt construction of a U.S. military airstrip in Okinawa, Japan that would pave over some of the last remaining habitat for endangered Okinawa dugongs.
Each year, nearly half of the more than 5 billion pounds of seafood consumed by Americans — including tuna, swordfish, shrimp, cod and other fish — comes from foreign fisheries that have not been shown as meeting U.S. whale and dolphin protection standards. The United States is required to insist on such proof before foreign seafood may lawfully be imported into the United States. A lawsuit filed today by Turtle Island Restoration Network and conservation groups seeks to protect marine mammals by requiring the government to ensure that all imported, wild-caught fish meet U.S. standards.
Charity Navigator, a guide to responsible giving and one of the most used independent evaluator of charities, has awarded Turtle Island Restoration Network the prestigious 4-star rating.
“This wasteful driftnet fishery is always in crisis and the emergency never stops for whales, dolphins, and fish that get caught and die by the hundreds,” said Turtle Island Restoration Network’s Teri Shore. “It’s time to ban driftnets instead of constant regulatory triage.”
Today the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announced emergency actions designed to protect endangered sperm whales from being caught in the California swordfish/thresher shark drift gillnet fishery. The emergency rule, prompted by advocacy by conservation groups, goes into effect tomorrow. The overdue regulations came 20 days after the drift gillnet fishing season opened in offshore waters beyond 75 nautical miles.
Replacing wasteful driftnets with cleaner gears will create a sustainable fishery by minimizing bycatch and ensuring long-term fishing opportunity.
View our gallery of elementary school students presenting their letters to Marc Levine.
4th Grade Class Calls on State Legislators to End Driftnets Along California Coast California Assemblymember Marc Levine Visits Class Today Fairfax, Calif. (April 4,
Driftnets kill more than 100 whales, dolphins, and sea lions along California coast every year Sacramento, CA – Today Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose) introduced
“Todd Steiner brings an uncompromising commitment to the Earth’s wildlife and deep expertise in ocean campaigns, including tireless work to protect dolphins from tuna fishing and closing endangered Pacific leatherback sea turtle habitat to drift gillnetting,”
New scientific research has confirmed fears of the global impacts of marine plastic pollution to marine life and marine ecosystems. Plastic does adsorb toxic
During my time working with Turtle Island Restoration Network as a sea turtle conservation intern, California has shown me some incredible things that I
Lawsuit Challenges Second, Massive U.S. Funded Fossil Fuel Project in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
$5 Billion in U.S. Funding Threatens Endangered Sea Turtles, Dugongs SAN FRANCISCO— Conservation groups amended an existing lawsuit today to challenge U.S. funding for
View a gallery that showcases images of whales, sea lions, seals and seabirds.
These photos depict only a fraction of the horrible scenes that play out every day as marine wildlife is caught and killed as bycatch in the California Drift Gillnet fishery. These images were obtained by the Sea Turtle Restoration Project through the Freedom of Information Act from NOAA.
New Report Details Top 10 Reasons to End California’s Deadliest Catch – Swordfish
New federal emergency fishing regulations are forcing California’s drift gillnet fleet for swordfish and shark to stop fishing for the season if a single endangered sperm whale gets entangled in a net. All vessels that fish offshore will now be required to carry on-board observers at all times.
Jaws? Not at Stinson Beach
SAN FRANCISCO— The National Marine Fisheries Service this week declined to issue a required marine mammal take permit for California’s swordfish drift gillnet fishery in light of the recent entanglement of two sperm whales, but agreed to call a special meeting next week to discuss possible emergency measures to allow the fishery to continue operating legally while reducing interactions with these endangered whales.
Highest Level of Marine Life Bycatch in Ten Years: Conservationists Question Whether Methods for Protecting Endangered Species Are Working
The California drift gillnet fishery for swordfish and shark is the most dangerous fishery for whales and other marine mammals along the U.S. West Coast from California to Alaska. A new federal review of marine mammal bycatch in commercial fisheries found that the drift gillnet fleet is causing more harm to whales than ever
Dirty Fossil Fuel Facilities Threaten Endangered Sea Turtles and Dugong SAN FRANCISCO— Conservation groups filed a lawsuit today challenging the U.S. Export-Import Bank’s nearly
Multipart decision includes transition for oyster company, clarity for ranching activities, and fulfilling Congressional vision for wilderness WASHINGTON – Secretary of the Interior Ken
Under Court Order – National Marine Fisheries Service Finalizes Plan to Protect Endangered Marine Species Honolulu, Hawai‘i – After three rounds of litigation stretching
Western Australia OKs Devastating Fossil Fuel Project Environmental groups are denouncing the state government approval of Woodside Petroleum’s proposed $45 billion Kimberley gas hub
A collaborative cleanup at a remote beach in the Point Reyes National Seashore removed hundreds of pounds of debris before it was washed out
ORACLE TEAM USA and Sea Turtle Team Clean Up 350 Pounds of Marine Debris and Plastic at Point Reyes Seashore
Fishing Boat Wreckage Removed and More Pieces of the AC72 Racing Yacht Recovered Today more than 350 pounds of boat debris from a wrecked
Collaboration to Remove Boat Debris and Plastic from Marin Shoreline – Day After Election on Nov. 7 Limantour South Google Earth Transects for ship
Lawsuit Filed to Protect Endangered Sea Turtles, Rare Albatross From Deadly Hawaii Swordfish Longline Fishery
HONOLULU— Conservation groups filed a lawsuit today in federal district court challenging a new rule by the National Marine Fisheries Service that doubles the
By the last day of the survey on Septebmer 29, the massive 3-month effort to observe the habitat usage and numbers of humpbacks that
Western Australia’s Environment Minister Overrides Conservation Appeals to OK Massive Browse Basin Fossil Fuel Facility Yesterday, Western Australia’s top environmental official approved the controversial
Conservation groups, Fisheries Service agree on deadline for take reduction plan
Endangered Sea Life in Peril as Fishing Season Revs Up SAN FRANCISCO— Conservation groups filed a notice of intent to sue the federal government
Fisheries Service finds whales killed at unsustainable levels
The legal publication Law 360 published this story about our legal challenge to U.S. funding of major LNG processing facilities in the Great Barrier
Lawsuit Launched Against Multi-billion-dollar U.S. Subsidy of Fossil Fuel Projects in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
Facilities Would Threaten Sea Turtles, Other Endangered Species SAN FRANCISCO— Three conservation groups initiated a legal challenge today to the U.S. Export-Import Bank’s nearly
ALBANY – A 10-year study of Adirondack loons shows mercury contamination can lead to population declines because birds with elevated mercury levels produce fewer
SeaTurtles.org is working to save sea turtles from plastic pollution through beach cleanups, advocacy to reduce disposable plastic production, and research to identify hot-spots
Conservation Groups Return to Court to Gain Overdue Protections Honolulu, Hawai‘i – Marine conservationists filed suit in federal court in Honolulu today against the
The plastic in our oceans is killing thousands of sea turtles and marine mammals each year, which is why Dr. Chris Pincetich with SeaTurtles.org
Honolulu, HI — The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision yesterday that upheld a federal district court settlement limiting the number of
Criminal Charges Filed in BP Oil Disaster; But Two Years Later, Death of Gulf of Mexico Sea Turtles Continue
San Francsico, CA—Kurt Mix, a former BP engineer, faces felony charges of destroying over 200 text messages related to oil giant’s Deepwater Horizon blowout
California Drift Gillnet Fishery Killed Two Sperm Whales The drift gillnet gear that killed a gray whale and entangled another over the past week
Two Endangered Sperm Whales Killed by California’s Drift Gillnets SACRAMENTO – On Saturday, March 3, the federal Pacific Fishery Management Council voted to pursue
The strict new federal standards limiting pollution from power plants are meant to safeguard human health. But they should have an important side benefit, according to
Endangered sea turtles in top 10 species impacted by oil industry in new report Oil, gas and coal extraction is threatening endangered wildlife in
McClatchy Washington Bureau Read the story on the McClatchy site. Posted on Sun, Jan. 08, 2012 Renee Schoof | McClatchy Newspapers last updated: January
City and Port Reviewing Final Environmental Impact Report This Week San Francisco – The Environmental Council (EC) – a coalition of more than thirty
New Measures Promise Reduced Air Pollution San Francisco – The Environmental Council – a coalition of more than thirty Bay Area organizations – is
With the support of thousands of members and activists, the Sea Turtle Restoration Project delivered…
This summer has seen unprecedented success of our Leatherback Watch Program thanks to our growing team of interns, project partners, and citizen scientists contributing
Watching the sun rise over San Francisco’s skyline while on my way to the docks to board another offshore expedition to the Farallone Islands
When the National Marine Fisheries Service released its first National Bycatch Report, the expert summary of U.S. fisheries impacts to endangered sea turtles compiled
SAN FRANCISCO— A settlement filed today in federal court between conservation groups and the National Marine Fisheries Service requires the government to make a
Conservationists to Seek Stronger Marine Protections at Public Meeting on National Ocean Policy in San Francisco on June 30 1:00 – 5:00 pm, Hilton
New Wheatstone and Gorgon projects fail to protect endangered species Chevron’s New Wheatstone LNG Plant and Pipeline Will Destroy Whale, Turtle and Dugong Habitat
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein (both D-CA) today praised the Senate Commerce Committee’s passage of the Gulf of the
Bluefin tuna are top ocean predators and epic swimmers and can be found in many waters including the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic Ocean
Chevron’s Massive Natural Gas Refineries Destroying Sea Turtle and Whale Habitat in Sacred Aboriginal Country San Francisco — The new Chevron Alternative Annual Report
STOCKHOLM — Global mercury emissions could grow by 25 percent by 2020 if no action is taken to control them, posing a threat to
GotMercury.org’s Operation Safe Seafood mentioned in San Francisco Chronicle article about mercury levels increasing in Pacific seabirds and the food chain
Mercury climbing in food chain, new study shows article by Kelly Zito Levels of mercury have risen dramatically in some Pacific seabirds in the
Climate Change Protections Needed To Prevent Extinction of Southern Rockhopper Penguins in Australia and New Zealand SAN FRANCISCO— The U.S. Interior Department announced today
Thousands of supporters used our online tools to submit comments to the National Marine Fisheries Service in support of their proposal to add the
Twenty-five groups representing millions of people oppose destruction of sea turtle, whale and seabird habitat by oil companies Twenty-five conservation groups representing millions of
Our efforts over the last several years to save the lives of marine mammals and sea turtles through advocating for the enforcement of the
Fewer than 170 whales remain as longline fishing fleets continue to take a toll
Recently I have received personal Thank You letters from children and invitations to speak or write about the BP spill, but while the support
Educating the public about the biology, ecology, and conservation challenges faced by critically endangered Pacific leatherback sea turtles is always a satisfying experience for
Sometimes, the truth can be ugly. This is definitely the case when discussing how so many seafood diners start with the deadly practice of
SAN FRANCISCO— The Interior Department announced today that the African penguin, the only nesting penguin on the African continent, will be listed as an
Team Established to Reduce Fishing-related Whale Deaths
Conservation Groups Sue to Protect False Killer Whales in Hawai‘i Longline Fishery Killing Whales at Twice Sustainable Honolulu, Hawai‘i – Seeking an end to the continuing slaughter of false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens) in the waters of Hawai‘i, Earthjustice, representing a coalition of conservation groups, filed suit in federal court in Honolulu today against the National Marine Fisheries Service, challenging the agency’s failure to devise a plan to protect the whales from the Hawai‘i-based longline fishery. The coalition includes Hui Mälama i Koholä, the Center for Biological Diversity, and Turtle Island Restoration Network.
Recently released data from National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) indicates Hawaii’s tuna longliners’ bycatch rose dramatically in 2008. It is estimated more than 60 dolphins and whales were caught in 2008, a 50% increase from the 40 caught the year before, including such species as Risso’s and spotted dolphins, short-finned pilot whales, and false killer whales.
Indigenous People in Papua New Guinea Petition Government to Suspend Seabed Mining in Territorial Seas
More than 80 participants attended the meeting organised by the Madang People’s Forum and attended by community representatives from Manus, Kairiru island, New Ireland, Bagabag Island, Karkar Island, Riwo, Gildiasi, Rai Coast, and the statement was also endorsed by representatives of the Ramu River Authority, Simil Hondulwa Evangelical Alliance of PNG, New Ireland Students Association of University of Technology, Sea Turtle Restoration Project, Alemewo Foundation, the Catholic Church, Madang Rehabilitation and presented from Vanuatu, Porgera, plus observers from surrounding community based organisations, school teachers and students.
SAN FRANCISCO- A federal judge approved a settlement May 20th of a lawsuit, brought under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, requiring the federal government to issue updated stock assessment reports for protected marine mammals ranging from Florida to Alaska.
Seattle –Following close on the heels of a decision to close the California and Oregon salmon fishery, last week west coast fishery managers approved opening a new longline fishery for swordfish in vital sea turtle habitat off the California and Oregon coasts. The same proposal, which faced widespread opposition, was defeated last year by the California Coastal Commission.
HONOLULU, Hawaii- Today the federal government announced the initiation of a formal review to determine if the black-footed albatross should receive the protections of the Endangered Species Act. The announcement, published in the Federal Register, comes in response to a petition filed in 2004 by the environmental law firm Earthjustice on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network.
SAN FRANCISCO- Two conservation organizations, the Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network, filed a lawsuit today against Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne for failing to take into account the latest information on global warming in management decisions affecting polar bears, walrus, sea otters, and manatees. The suit, brought under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, seeks to force the federal government to issue updated stock assessment reports for protected marine mammals ranging from Florida to Alaska. Stock assessments are population estimates that include information on the range of the species and threats to its survival.
Forest Knolls, CA – On Friday, August 10, the California Coastal Commission voted a unanimous no at a highly charged meeting in San Francisco to a proposal by the federal government to allow swordfish longline fishing along the California coast.
Bababag Island, Papua New Guinea â€“ This week tribal villagers from Bagabag Island in Madang Province called on the government and all exploration and mining companies doing business in Papua New Guinea to stop pushing for the sea bed mining, a controversial new mining method. The villagers formally lodged their concerns and protests by running an advertisement in the national paper.
Environmental, scientific, sporting and angling organizations from all regions of the country today took concrete steps to further press President Bush, and seven of
Fisheries Service Announces Status Review for Billfish Threatened by Longline Fishing WASHINGTON—The White Marlin, an imperiled billfish in the Atlantic Ocean, today took a
Whale and Turtle Killing Fishery Blocked for 2006; but Bush Administration Proposes to Bring Deadly Driftnets to Oregon and California in 2007 San Francisco
Proposal to Expand California/Oregon Drift Gillnet Fishery Puts Endangered Sea Turtles and Whales at Risk
Fisheries Service Announces Plan to Issue Permit.to Authorize Capture of Endangered Whales Forest Knolls, California â€“ â€“ On Friday, the National Marine Fisheries Service
“Curtains of Death” May Return to Protected Area on the Pacific Coast Partners Oceana and the Sea Turtle Restoration Project warn that on November
Judge Approves Settlement To Protect Atlantic White Marlin From Longline Fishing Ruling Requires Bush Administration To Re-Examine Whether Species Warrants Protections Under The Endangered
New York – May 31, 2005 – On the eve of a critical United Nations meeting to discuss actions to protect the world’s oceans from overfishing, a letter signed by more than 1,000 international scientists calling for decisive action has been delivered to the international body. Recent scientific reports have linked industrial fishing, such as longlining, to the decline of sea turtles and other marine species, and have offered marine protected areas as a potential solution. During the UN meeting which begins June 10, Costa Rica will be proposing a plan of action that offers sustainable use marine protected areas as a part of a comprehensive solution for the world’s oceans.
On Monday, June 6th, the new report Striplining the Pacific: The Case for A United Nations Moratorium on High Seas Industrial Longline Fishing will be released at the United Nations Law of the Sea meeting June 6-10th. The new book length report echoes the sentiment of Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin’s call on May 1st to end the “pillage” and “rape” of the ocean at an international fisheries conference this week.
Hear STRP’s Robert Ovetz NPR provides a critical report on the new circle hooks that are being used to justify removing protections for sea
Forest Knolls, CA – On the eve of a key United Nations meeting relating to the oceans, a growing number of international scientists and non-governmental organizations are actively lobbying their country delegates to address the problem of industrial longline fishing in the Pacific. The scientists and NGOs are also joined in their efforts by members of the New Zealand, Irish and EU parliaments. The lobbying effort echoes the call of more than 800 international scientists and 230 NGOs who are also asking for a moratorium on industrial longline fishing in order to protect endangered leatherback sea turtles, albatross, sharks and other species caught and killed as bycatch by industrial longliners.
World renowned primatologist Dr. Jane Goodall, DBE, Founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace, has added her voice to 1007 international scientists from 93 countries who are urging the UN to implement a moratorium on longline fishing in the Pacific Ocean to prevent the extinction of the critically endangered leatherback sea turtle. The scientists are joined by 282 non-governmental organizations from 60 countries. The list of signers includes biologist E.O. Wilson, oceanographer Dr. Sylvia Earle, a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, and former U.S. astronaut Bernard Harris, Jr. M.D.
Debate Takes Place on KPFA Morning Show, December 6, 2004 Todd Steiner, executive director of Turtle Island Restoration Network, debated NOAA Fisheries Director, Dr.
Interview highlights Mercury in Seafood and Overfishing On November 24th, Andy Peri, Marine Species Campainer for the Sea Turtle Restoration Project, was interviewed on
New Report: Longlines Annually Capture and Kill 4.4 Million Sharks, Billfish, Seabirds, Sea Turtles and Mammals in the Pacific
Although there have been recent efforts to “mitigate” the devastating impact of industrial pelagic longlines on sea turtles, the problem is not limited to these species. Pelagic longlines are literally wiping out the lions and tigers of the ocean—sharks, billfish and tunas. Industrial longline fishing results in an extensive catch of non-targeted species as “bycatch” creating a global marine biodiversity crisis.
Honolulu, HI–Today, Turtle Island Restoration Network , the Center for Biological Diversity, an d Ka `Iwa Kua Lele, represented by Earthjustice, filed suit in federal district court in Hawai`i against the National Marine Fisheries Service (“NMFS”) for reopening the Hawai`i-based longline swordfish fishery in violation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (“MBTA”), Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), and National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”). The fishery will cause the deaths of black-footed albatross and Laysan albatross, both protected by the MBTA, and endangered sea turtles protected by the ESA, and was reopened without a proper Environmental Impact Statement, in violation of NEPA.
Change Comes After Pressure from Lawsuit
Honolulu, HI – Today, the National Marines Fisheries Service (“NMFS”) finally acknowledged the devastating toll that the Hawai‘i-based longline fishing fleet inflicts on the Hawai‘i population of false killer whales, formally classifying the longline fleet as “Category I” in the List of Fisheries for 2004, a designation reserved for fisheries that annually kill and seriously injure marine mammals at unsustainable rates. In November 2003, Turtle Island Restoration Network, along with the Center for Biological Diversity and the Hawai‘i community group Hui Mälama i Koholäand, represented by the Earthjustice law firm filed suit on behalf to force NMFS to increase protection for the whale by making such a reclassification, as mandated by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (“MMPA”).
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.
Honolulu, HI – A coalition of local fishing and environmental groups sued the National Marines Fisheries Service (“NMFS”) in federal court today for its failure to protect the Hawai‘i population of false killer whales from the Hawaii’s industrial longline fishing fleet. NMFS has estimated the population of false killer whales in the waters around Hawai`i at about 83 whales.
Honolulu, HI – A coalition of local fishing and environmental groups sued the National Marines Fisheries Service (“NMFS”) in federal court today for its failure to protect the Hawai‘i population of false killer whales from the Hawaii’s industrial longline fishing fleet. NMFS has estimated the population of false killer whales
San Francisco- The Bush administration’s Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife, andParks will be served with a lawsuit filed today for failing to take actions to protect an endangered population of Alaskan sea otters.
A coalition of conservation groups from both sides of the Pacific Rim filed a lawsuit in US District Court against the US Department of Defense over plans to construct a new heliport facility on a coral reef on the east coast of Okinawa, Japan. Conservationists are concerned that the proposed 1.5 mile long airbase to be built on reclaimed land over a coral reef will destroy the remaining habitat of the endangered Okinawa dugong, a relative of the manatee, and a cultural icon of the Okinawan people.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Yesterday the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), a federal agency charged with managing the nation’s fisheries, violated the Endangered Species Act (ESA)