New Protections for Central Coast Marine Areas

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, September 20, 2007

There are 29 new protected areas.  They span roughly 204 miles of state water along the central coast - between San Mateo and Santa Barbara Counties.  Fishing in the areas is either forbidden or restricted.   Kaitilin Gaffney with Ocean Conservancy says it’ll help to preserve marine habitat:

“The fish, the invertebrates, the algae, also the predators, the seabird and marine mammals.  And that’s what so unique about marine protected areas.  They’re designed to protect everything –not just one species at a time, but really the whole web of life.” 

A spokesman for the Recreational Fishing Alliance says the new areas may put some sport fishing companies out of business.  The Department of Fish and Game will patrol to enforce the new rules.  The Marine Protected Areas are the result of a 1999 California law.  By 2011 they expect to set up similar zones along the entire coast.