Lolita, the last survivor from the largest orca capture operation in U.S. history, is a slave to entertainment. Her prison is the Miami Seaquarium. There, she is forced to spend her days circling the waters of a tank that is just 80 feet across at its widest point. The tank has a maximum depth of only 20 feet, and it is further compromised by a concrete platform that nearly splits the tank in two. For a being that would swim up to 100 miles per day and dive hundreds of feet in an ocean environment, this is hell on earth.
On July 4, 2018, the world’s largest factory vessel, the Damanzaihao, left Peru following a month-long detention.In spite of local prosecutors’ valiant efforts to keep the Damanzaihao in port pending a criminal investigation of illegal fishing, a Peruvian court determined that further detention was unwarranted.
On October 17th, at the invitation of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Sea Shepherd Legal presented at the FishCRIME 2018 symposium. The purpose of the symposium was to “advance efforts towards high level political commitment to cooperatively addressing transnational organised fisheries crime.”
The Trump administration is trying to strip wildlife of all legal protections. The latest move is an attack on the very cornerstone of U.S. environmental law - the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Sea Shepherd Legal is fighting to keep the ESA intact.
On September 20, 2018, Sea Shepherd Legal filed suit against the Trump Administration for failing to adhere to mandated processes under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Earlier this month, Peruvian President Martín Alberto Vizcarra signed a decree to ramp up Peru’s efforts in the fight against illegal fishing. This decree comes on the heels of Sea Shepherd Legal’s second workshop with Peruvian authorities, including representatives from the Coast Guard (DICAPI), the Ministry of Environment (MINAM), the Environmental Prosecutors’ Office (FEMA), and the national judiciary.
This Monday, we filed comments challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest maneuvering in support of the pesticide industry. This maneuvering is yet further evidence of the Trump administration’s ongoing attempt to orchestrate a slow-motion coup within the EPA. While “coup” may be a strong word, it is accurate. There is simply no other way to describe this administration’s brazen attempt to convert the EPA, an agency charged by Congress with protecting the environment, into the handmaiden of polluting industry. Before delving into the substance, we express our thanks to the Center for Biological Diversity for signing on to our comments regarding this important issue.
For many years now, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, more commonly known as Chatham House, has hosted a forum to discuss issues related to illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Considered to be the second most influential think tank in the world after the Brookings Institute, Chatham House has a core mission to promote a greater understanding of international issues and current affairs. Many influential speakers have graced the Chatham House podium throughout the years, including Ban Ki-Moon and Madeline Albright.
On April 16, 2018, Sea Shepherd Legal kicked off a three-day workshop in Lima, Peru. A resounding success, the workshop built upon a comprehensive webinar we conducted in November 2017. In attendance at the workshop were a wide range of government officials, including representatives from the Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Production (fisheries), customs, the Coast Guard, the judiciary and the national prosecutor’s office.
It is not often that we praise the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), the federal agency in charge of oceanic fisheries and administration of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) with respect to marine species. In this post, we give credit where it’s due — with a few very important caveats.
On January 22, NMFS issued a final rule listing the giant manta ray (Manta birostris) as “threatened” under the ESA. NMFS rendered this decision in response to a November 2015 petition by Defenders of Wildlife (Defenders). Sea Shepherd Legal lent its support to this petition by jointly filing comments with Defenders in April 2016.