NMMA comments on restoration plan for Florida Keys

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Flats fishing is one of the most popular activities in the Florida Keys.

Flats fishing is one of the most popular activities in the Florida Keys.

Last week, the National Marine Manufacturers Association commented on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s environmental impact statement for the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. The document is also known as the “Restoration Blueprint.”

The NMMA calls the sanctuary a “critical marine habitat and destination for recreational boaters and anglers” and the association supports a plan that “responsibly balances resource protection with user access.”

NMMA says it supports Alternative Plan 2 because it balances recreation access while providing protections to natural resources. In a statement, the NMMA said, “The need for the proposed action is based on widespread, acute, chronic and emerging threats to marine resources in the Florida Keys. The existing marine zones and management plan activities designed and implemented by FKNMS in 1997 are no longer adequate to ensure the long-term health and protection of this ecosystem.”

The association raised concerns on topics and offered solutions on the following:

  • The need for collaborative and coordinated fisheries management with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  • The need for collaborative and coordinated fisheries management with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  • Allocating appropriate resources to law enforcement
  • Expansion of the sanctuary boundary
  • Sanctuary-wide regulations
  • Proposed modifications to marine zones
  • Education

Click here to read the NMMA’s full comments.

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