Regarding the proposed Chumash National Marine Sanctuary: The Marine Life Protection Act required a “Network of Marine Protected Areas” along the California coast. Several meetings of stakeholders established two options for the Department of Fish and Wildlife commission.
The “fishermen” came together to form Option 1.
The “environmental” community, spearheaded by the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary folks, organized a large coalition against our proposal, Option 2. We now have 27 marine areas covering more than 50 percent of our local nearshore reefs. This demonstrated marine sanctuary power to regulate fisheries through political process.
The fishermen received a letter from PG&E announcing plans to perform high-energy seismic testing. The fishermen alerted the Fish and Wildlife commission and wrote letters to The Tribune alerting of the dangers. The environmental community and tribes joined the fishermen in the fight to stop this study. By the time it got to the Coastal Com mission, it was denied. This demonstrated the power of the local community and commissions to deter unsafe activity in the ocean without federal help.
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The unlikely chance of oil drilling happening in our waters is not worth the burden of unnecessary additional federal regulators influencing our local harbors and ocean.