Congress must keep Magnuson-Stevens Act strong

Statement from Environmental Defense Fund

September 26, 2017
Matt Smelser, (202) 572-3272,

(WASHINGTON - September 26, 2017) The following is a statement from Matt Tinning, Senior Director of Environmental Defense Fund’s U.S. Oceans Program on today’s U.S. House Natural Resources Committee hearing:

“We agree with the consensus expressed by virtually all of today’s hearing participants – witnesses and Members of Congress alike – that the Magnuson-Stevens Act is a remarkable success and must remain strong. We also agree that management of private recreational fishing in the Gulf of Mexico is broken and needs to change. Unfortunately, many of the bills discussed today aim to weaken one critical element that works in the red snapper fishery – catch limits.

“The red snapper population is rebuilding and quotas have more than doubled over the last decade for recreational and commercial fishermen. The way that quota turns into fishing access for private anglers is what we need to fix. We support efforts to find solutions that provide flexible access to anglers, but they must include real safeguards for conservation.”

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