Feb 24 2011

House backs killing NOAA catch share funds

The dome of the Capitol Building in DCphoto © 2008 Dion Hinchcliffe | more info (via: Wylio)

The U.S. House has voted to cut off funding for future catch share programs, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration policy that opens the door to commodities trading of fishermen’s catch allocations — and a policy already steering control of the fishing industry to larger corporations while driving out smaller, independent boats.

The 259-159 vote early Saturday morning was largely un-lobbied by either fishing industry backers or the Obama administration and its environmental allies, notably the Environmental Defense Fund that developed and has pushed hard for catch share policies.

The vote marked the first time a House of Congress has weighed in on the management regimen, and it looms as a setback for the Obama administration, whose most visible advocate of catch shares is Jane Lubchenco, the embattled NOAA administrator who formerly served as a top board member with Environmental Defense.

While with EDF, she helped organize a disputed scientific justification for catch shares, implying that without them, all food fish would soon be taken.

Read the rest of the story here.

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