May 28, 2020
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Feds must step up to protect Maine lobster fishery, lawmakers say

Robert F. Bukaty | AP
Robert F. Bukaty | AP
In this March 13, 2020, file photo, a lobster is seen at a packing facility in Kennebunkport.

Leaders in the Maine Legislature are calling on the federal government to protect the lobster fishery in the wake of a ruling about protection of rare right whales.

A federal judge ruled earlier this month that the federal government’s failure to protect North Atlantic right whales constituted a violation of the Endangered Species Act. A bipartisan group of Maine legislators sent a letter to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Monday calling for “decisive federal action” on the subject.

The judge said in his ruling that a remedy would be determined in the future. The Maine lawmakers, led by Senate President Troy Jackson and House Speaker Sara Gideon, said they anticipate “irrevocable harm to the Maine lobster industry and the livelihoods of thousands of Mainers” if the cases proceed without the federal government taking a proactive role.

The federal government has declined to comment on the case because it’s still in court.

 


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