Legislative Update – “Ropeless Fishing” Bill

Though Central Coast Vegans wants to see the end of fishing altogether, this bill increases costs associated with certain ocean fishing and thus decreases the number of animals killed while also substantially decreasing whale entanglements.

ACTION:  Write to the CA Assembly Committee on Water, Parks, and Wildlife in SUPPORT of AB 534.  Bill text can be viewed here:  https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220AB534

Submit your position here: https://awpw.assembly.ca.gov/  or call: (916) 319-2096.

AB 534 requires ropeless fishing gear by November 2025.  Ropes attached from locator buoys to traps on the ocean floor create entanglements of blue whales, humpback whales, and leatherback sea turtles.  These ropes are used by Dungeness crab trap fisheries, commercial and recreational spot prawn trap fisheries, spiny lobster fisheries, and other fisheries.  This bill will end the use of ropes that are used to spot where the traps are.
Trap and pot fisheries in California and around the world still utilize 19th Century fishing technologies when 21st Century solutions such as ropeless gear are available. Ropeless gear, also known as “on-demand” or “buoyless” gear, is the only way to eliminate entanglement risk while permitting fishing to continue. The gear allows traps on the seafloor to be remotely called to the surface and removes the static vertical lines in the water column that entangle whales, sea turtles, and other animals.

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