Maine Lobstermen’s Association Statement Following Court Ruling


A ruling issued today from the US District Court for the District of Columbia granted two of the plaintiff’s six claims and prompted the following statement from the Maine Lobstermen’s Association, (MLA), this evening.

The MLA will not allow this industry to go down without a fight.  Today’s ruling from the Court is a mixed bag, but clearly demonstrates why it’s more important than ever for MLA to have the financial resources to continue this battle.  The lawsuit was filed by the Center for Biological Diversity.

The Court stated:  The Court’s findings at this juncture do not dictate that it must immediately shutter the American lobster fishery.  Indeed, it is cognizant of what a weighty blow that would inflict.”  Instead, the Court has requested the parties  submit additional briefing about what remedy should be ordered by the Court.

The Court also acknowledged that, after further review, the agency may find that “projected take of endanger whales is in fact lower than orginally estimated.”  Thi is precisely why MLA filed its own lawsuit against NMFS, which remains pending.  MLA’s case demonstrates that the government’s order for a 98% reduction in the lobster fishery’s minimal risk to right whales rests solely on hypothetical, inflated estimates unsupported by the agency’s own data.  These are core issues that MLA believes the Court must direct the agency to examine rigorously according to a press release issued by Kevin Kelley,Director of Advancement for MLA.