Once again the administration is working on fundamentally changing the nation’s culture and traditions through its’ environmental agenda and policy of regulation. The target this time is our lakes, coastal beaches and fishing areas.
By establishing the taskforce in June, the President put forward another high speed agenda requiring:
1. Within 90 days from the date of this memorandum, the Task Force shall develop recommendations that include:
- A national policy that ensures the protection, maintenance, and restoration of the health of ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes ecosystems and resources, enhances the sustainability of ocean and coastal economies, preserves our maritime heritage, provides for adaptive management to enhance our understanding of and capacity to respond to climate change, and is coordinated with our national security and foreign policy interests. The recommendations should prioritize upholding our stewardship responsibilities and ensuring accountability for all of our actions affecting ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources, and be consistent with international law, including customary international law as reflected in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
- A United States framework for policy coordination of efforts to improve stewardship of the oceans, our coasts, and the Great Lakes. The Task Force should review the Federal Government’s existing policy coordination framework to ensure integration and collaboration across jurisdictional lines in meeting the objectives of a national policy for the oceans, our coasts, and the Great Lakes. This will include coordination with the work of the National Security Council and Homeland Security Council as they formulate and coordinate policy involving national and homeland security, including maritime security. The framework should also address specific recommendations to improve coordination and collaboration among Federal, State, tribal, and local authorities, including regional governance structures.
- An implementation strategy that identifies and prioritizes a set of objectives the United States should pursue to meet the objectives of a national policy for the oceans, our coasts, and the Great Lakes.
2. Within 180 days from the date of this memorandum, the Task Force shall develop, with appropriate public input, a recommended framework for effective coastal and marine spatial planning. This framework should be a comprehensive, integrated, ecosystem-based approach that addresses conservation, economic activity, user conflict, and sustainable use of ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources consistent with international law, including customary international law as reflected in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
3. The Task Force shall terminate upon the completion of its duties.
The Task Force’s recommendations and frameworks should be cost effective and improve coordination across Federal agencies. – Source: President Obama’s Letter Creating the Taskforce
As has been so often the case with this administration, we have a ridiculous task in size and scope for the timeframe being allowed. This means that the policy is already decided and now begins the full court press to ram it down our throats. This just another prong on the pitchfork of the “green agenda” designed to strip us of our freedom, our sovereignty and drive us toward socialism.
To most this may seem like a benign effort to help protect our natural resources but it is not nearly as innocent as it appears. Policies like this in conjunction with other environmental efforts such as the Endangered Species Act creates regulatory control and avoids the need legislation to set direction of their policies. Think about what is going on – the San Joaquin Valley drought because of a fish which created irrigation restrictions, Cass Sunstein and his Nudge Theory. (you should read his book) It is all about government control.
America has always been the home of sports anglers, boaters and water enthusiasts of all types. Across the country from the lakes to the beaches swimming, surfing, water skiing, recreational fishing and boating are not only family traditions but are also huge industries. Recreational fishing alone generated $82 billion in sales, $24 billion in income, and supported 534,000 jobs in 2006 according to NOAA’s Fisheries Service.
This isn’t just about recreation either. Commercial fishing – (fishermen, seafood processors, seafood wholesalers and retailers are a $103 billion a year industry. This industry created $44 billion in income and 1.5 million jobs in 2006, according to Fisheries Economics of the United States 2006.
“The report documents clearly that managing fisheries sustainably is good for the environment and the economy,” said Jim Balsiger, NOAA acting assistant administrator for NOAA’s Fisheries Service. “Fishing helps create a substantial number of jobs around the nation.”
Fisheries Economics of the United States, 2006 is available online:
As usual the Presidents announcement includes the promise that this will all be done, “with appropriate public input” but early reports show just the opposite.
“Important contributions that members of the recreational fishing community made to the Ocean Policy Task Force communicated at our meeting and in our letter were largely ignored in the interim report,” said CSF (Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation) President Jeff Crane. “It is hard to comprehend how the voice of recreational anglers, who were requested to advise the task force and represent such an important constituency on this issue, was so minimized on some very important issues.”
One key issue of concern to the sport fishing community, was the need for differentiation between commercial and recreational fishing. Recreational angling and the critical role it plays in fisheries conservation in the United States was completely missing.
Recreational anglers and the fees they pay for fishing licenses and equipment are critical to conservation management efforts. Funds generated by the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund which is a user-pay/user-benefit program generated $720 million in revenues last year. $402 million of this was distributed to all 50 states to specifically support sport fish restoration programs.
“We are completely baffled as to why the Task Force failed to acknowledge or include any mention of the key aspects of recreational fishing which were presented to them in detail on more than one occasion,” said CSF Board Member Phil Morlock. “The significant number of jobs and the economy which over 60 million American anglers support, and the major conservation efforts by people who fish in all regions of the country were completely ignored. No distinction between the obvious dramatic differences between recreational fishing and commercial harvest methods was made.”
As a sport fisherman myself, I know that the CSF and other sportsmen’s organizations support a healthy ocean, coastal and fishery resources to sustain coastal communities and sound environmental policies in support of protecting our natural resources. These groups also support expanding the scientific basis by which these policies are determined.
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Restore the Republic, Reject the “Green Agenda” of the Progressive Left!