Water Rights Under Attack Again?
The Obama administration has a strategy that could prohibit U.S. citizens from fishing some of the nation's oceans, coastal areas, Great Lakes, and even inland waters like the Great Lakes Water Basin which includes Geauga County.
This could and will, eventually affect our inland lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, and well water.
On June 12, 2009, President Obama sent a memorandum to the heads of executive departments and federal agencies establishing an Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force, led by the White House Council on Environmental Quality. The Task Force is charged with developing a recommendation for a national policy that ensures protection, maintenance, and restoration of oceans, our coasts and the Great Lakes. It will also recommend a framework for improved stewardship, and effective coastal and marine spatial planning.
Excerpt from memorandum:
[1. Within 90 days from the date of this memorandum, the Task Force shall develop recommendations that include:
a. A national policy that ensures the protection, maintenance, and restoration of the health of ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes ecosystems and resources, enhances the sustainability of ocean and coastal economies, preserves our maritime heritage, provides for adaptive management to enhance our understanding of and capacity to respond to climate change, and is coordinated with our national security and foreign policy interests. The recommendation should prioritize upholding our stewardship responsibilities and ensuring accountability for all of our actions affecting ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources, and be consistent with international law, including customary international law as reflected in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. ]
The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea lays down a comprehensive regime of law and order in the world's oceans and seas establishing rules governing all uses of the oceans and their resources. It enshrines the notion that all problems of ocean space are closely interrelated and need to be addressed as a whole.
This Task Force is like a world ocean zoning regulatory board that is an arm of the United Nations. They issue reports on zoning uses of all waters.
The Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force, United Nations Convention on the Law Of The Sea, And United Nations Agenda 21 are all working in unison to completely control our private property and all waters in the world. This is all the diabolical workings of “The New World Order”.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF), International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), and other Big Green anti-use organizations, all of which are Marxist in nature and also part of this world plan, are being used to eliminate recreational fishing and many other rights under the guise of protecting the environment….or Sustainable Development, a buzz word to always look for.
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Planning the future of recreational fishing access in America is based on a similar agenda of these same groups and other Big Green anti-use organizations, through an Executive Order by the President. The current U.S. direction with fishing is a direct parallel to what happened in Canada with hunting: The negative economic impacts on hard-working American families and small businesses are being ignored.
"In spite of what we hear daily in the press about the President's concern for jobs and the economy and contrary to what he stated in the June order creating this process, we have seen no evidence from NOAA or the task force that recreational fishing and related jobs are receiving any priority."
Unless more anglers speak up to their Congressional representatives so their input will be considered, it appears the task force will issue a final report for "marine spatial planning" by late March. President Barack Obama then could possibly issue an Executive Order to implement its recommendations.
Led by NOAA's Jane Lubchenco, the task force has shown no overt dislike of recreational angling. As ESPN previously reported, WWF, Greenpeace, Defenders of Wildlife, Pew Environment Group and others produced a document entitled "Transition Green" shortly after Obama was elected in 2008.
What has happened since suggests that the task force has been in lockstep with that position paper, according to Morlock.
In late summer, just after the administration created the task force, these groups produced "Recommendations for the Adoption and Implementation of an Oceans, Coasts, and Great Lakes National Policy." This document makes repeated references to "overfishing," but doesn't reference recreational angling, its importance, and its benefits, both to participants and the resource.
Additionally, some of these same organizations have revealed their anti-fishing bias with their attempts to ban tackle containing lead in the United States and Canada.
Also, recreational angling and commercial fishing have been lumped together as harmful to the resource, despite protests by the angling industry.
Morlock's evidence of collusion -- the green groups began clamoring for an Executive Order to implement the task force's recommendations even before the public comment period ended in February.
On Feb. 12, the New York Times reported on that "President Obama and his team are preparing an array of actions using his executive power to advance energy, even Morlock fears that "what we're seeing coming at us is an attempted dismantling of the science-based fish and wildlife model that has served us so well.
There's no basis in science for the agendas of these groups who are trying to push the public out of being able to fish and recreate.
"Conflicts (user) are overstated and problems are manufactured. It's all just an excuse to put us off the water."
In the wake of the task force's framework document, the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation (CSF) and its partners in the U.S. Recreational Fishing & Boating Coalition again voiced their concerns to the administration.
"Some of the potential policy implications of this interim framework have the potential to be a real threat to recreational anglers who not only contribute billions of dollars to the economy and millions of dollars in tax revenues to support fisheries conservation, but who are also the backbone of the American fish and wildlife conservation ethic," said CSF President Jeff Crane.
Morlock, a member of the CSF board, added, "There are over one million jobs in America supported coast to coast by recreational fishing. The task force has not included any accountability requirements in their reports for evaluating or mitigating how the new policies they are drafting will impact the fishing industry or related economies.
"Given that the scope of this process appears to include a new set of policies for all coastal and inland waters of the United States, the omission of economic considerations is inexcusable."
This is not the only access issue threatening the public's right to fish, but it definitely is the most serious, according to Chris Horton, national conservation director for BASS.
"With what's being created, the same principles could apply inland as apply to the oceans," he said. "Under the guise of 'marine spatial planning' entire watersheds could be shut down, even 2,000 miles up a river drainage from the ocean.
"Every angler needs to be aware because if it's not happening in your backyard today or tomorrow, it will be eventually.
"We have one of the largest voting blocks in the country and we need to use it. We must not sit idly by."