Let America Fish
The Center for Coastal Conservation, a Bass Anglers for Saltwater Conservation partner, has officially launched “Let America Fish,” a communications campaign focused on adjustments to the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA) that benefit recreational fishing. The campaign highlights the impact of the recreational fishing and boating industries on the U.S. economy, speaks to the conservation efforts put forth by recreational anglers, and sheds light on the fact that the current laws are unbalanced thereby severely limiting access for recreational anglers.
“Recreational boating and fishing are two of America’s oldest and most beloved past times. They are family friendly activities that connect people to nature and help them to develop an abiding respect for our natural resources,” said Center for Coastal Conservation President Jeff Angers. “Through the ‘Let America Fish’ campaign, we hope to help lawmakers and the general public understand why current federal fisheries law is unfair to the recreational angling community. Revising federal law and agency guidance will ensure fair and reasonable access to America’s fisheries and improve fisheries management to guide the future of recreational fishing and boating.”
As a group, recreational anglers provide a greater economic impact than industrial commercial fishermen. America’s 11 million recreational saltwater anglers make a combined economic contribution of $70 billion annually, spend $26.5 billion each year, and create 455,000 American jobs.
In addition, recreational anglers have led the way to maintain sustainable fish populations and protect habitats. They contribute to habitat restoration, and their license fees pay for management and restoration conducted by state agencies. Contributions from license fees and excise taxes on fishing equipment drive $1.5 billion annually toward conservation and habitat restoration. Building and preserving healthy fish stocks is in the best interest of all Americans, and recreational anglers, along with fishing equipment manufacturers, have developed fishing tackle and best practices that reduce fish mortality.
“The Center for Coastal Conservation aims to make fishing fair by fixing marine fisheries management,” said Angers. “We hope the messages delivered through ‘Let America Fish’ will resonate with Members of Congress, recreational anglers and boaters nationwide. Our goal is to sustain healthy fish stocks and ensure our ocean fisheries remain truly public resources that are available to all Americans.”
The Center for Coastal Conservation maximizes opportunity for saltwater recreational anglers by organizing, focusing and engaging recreational fishing stakeholders to speak with one voice to shape federal marine fisheries management policy. Visit www.CoastalConservation.US.