Although this does not directly affect us here in the Sierra’s, I feel that as fishermen, we all feel the pain when something like this happens. Just imagine if your favorite fishery was taken away.
Life for the salt water fishermen who fishes off the coast of central California may change in the near future. The CA DFG, heavily influenced by several large environmental groups is considering a massive closure of off-shore fishing to boats, consumptive divers and people fishing from kayaks. Proposal 4, if passed, will have a tremendous impact on sport fishing in California.
Two groups of concerned fishermen have banded together to create an alternative proposal called Proposal 2-XA. At the forefront of 2-XA are the members of Coastside Fishing Club and the members of Keep America Fishing. These members propose that 2-XA offers the best balance between recreation and conservation. One member is quoted as saying:
As a group, we believe that conservation of our natural resources is key. As consumptive users, it is in our best interest to conserve resources. Of course, the scientists that sit in cubicles and Ivory towers truly want to study nature as if she has never been impacted by humans. Since we are on this planet, then that is impossible.
If proposal 4 is passed “as-is”, that could set a dangerous precedent in the state of CA. Who knows which watershed will be in the cross-hairs next. With a strong precedent set, it will only become easier to take away your fishing privileges. Shutting down fishing in the name of conservation could become an epidemic. Is this a case of environmentalism gone wild?