Speak out against E15 and a bad fishing proposal

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It takes little time to make your voice heard, thanks to today’s digital communications. And speaking out against two government proposals that impact dealers and customers is needed now.

1) We must tell the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: NO MORE E15!

The EPA is now soliciting public comments on its proposed rule regarding renewable-fuel levels for 2018. This is our chance to let the EPA know that America’s 88 million boaters and 35,000 businesses that make up the recreational boating and fishing industry need access to ethanol-free (E0) and E10 gasoline — and not more E15.

Under the EPA's proposal for 2018, the availability of E0 and E10 gasoline are in jeopardy. As the EPA continues to call for more ethanol in gasoline, the availability of E15 will correspondingly grow. More ethanol will diminish the capacity to keep producing E0.

It all increases the risk of boating consumers misfueling, thus jeopardizing their boats and boat engines across the country. The fact is that the nation’s boaters need to be able to fill their boat with the fuel of their choice, and that’s ethanol-free and/or E10.

The boating industry has been calling on the EPA to propose lower 2018 ethanol levels to ensure that boating families remain safe on the water and continue to enjoy access to approved fuel blends. This announcement is ultimately disconcerting for boaters and recreational marine businesses.

The EPA is soliciting public comments until Aug. 31 on its proposed rule regarding renewable fuel levels for 2018. Take a few minutes now and tell the EPA that you want continued access to ethanol-free and E10 gasoline and that the current ethanol volume should be reduced.

Go to: www.regulations.gov. Click on “Renewable Fuel Standards Program 2018.” When it opens, click the “Comment Now” box at the upper right and complete your comment calling for the EPA to lower 2018 ethanol volume requirements.

2) You’re not going to believe this action! In spite of the recreational fishing community's united opposition, the federal Office of Highly Migratory Species announced that a fleet of longliners will be allowed back into Florida's East Coast Closed Zone — an important conservation area.

Specifically, under an exempted fishing permit, a single company is going to be allowed to drop thousands of longline hooks inside the closed zone, targeting billfish and other species.

The zone was closed 16 years ago to protect juvenile swordfish and other species, such as billfish, sea turtles and overfished shark species. Buoy gear replaced longlines because they take no bycatch and have proved to be both useful in sustaining marine resources and compatible with recreational fishing.

It is estimated that 5,499 undersized swordfish, 759 billfish and 6,135 sharks would be killed by longlines under this EFP.

Many recreational anglers know the closed zone as a conservation success story. Not only have swordfish bounced back in strong numbers, but fishing for sailfish, yellowfin tuna, marlin and other recreational species also has been phenomenal. Reversing the recovery by allowing devastating longline gear to return makes no sense.

Tell your members of Congress to oppose this ill-advised plan and support common-sense federal fisheries management strategies, such as those proposed in the Modern Fish Act. Click below and take action today:

TAKE ACTION

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