U.S. Representatives Ask NOAA to Suspend North Atlantic Right Whale Vessel Speed Rule

This week, U.S. Representatives Mary Sattler Peltola (D-Alaska), Vicente Gonzalez (D-Texas), Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) and Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.) wrote NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator Janet Coit urging her to suspend further action on proposed changes to the North Atlantic right whale vessel speed rule. The proposed federal regulations – now in the final rule making stage – would broaden the current 10-knot (11.5 mph) speed restriction to include vessels 35 feet and larger (down from 65 feet); expand the go-slow zones from discrete calving areas to essentially the entire Atlantic Coast out as far as 90 miles, and extend these speed restrictions as long as seven months a year.

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