Mexico News Daily – July 27, 2018
A United States court has ordered the U.S. government to impose a ban on Mexican seafood imports caught using gillnets in the northern Gulf of California as a measure to protect the vaquita porpoise. But the ruling is expected to have a significant economic impact on fishing communities in the region.
The U.S. Court of International Trade issued the decision yesterday, denying a motion from the administration of President Donald Trump to dismiss the case, writing: “Evidence shows that vaquita are killed by gillnet fishing and are on the verge of extinction: because the statutory duty to ban fish imports resulting in such excessive marine mammal bycatch is mandatory, the government must comply with it.”
The ruling follows a lawsuit filed in March by three conservation groups — the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Center for Biological Diversity and the Animal Welfare Institute — against the Department of Commerce. The suit argued that under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) the U.S. government has a legal obligation to impose a ban on Mexican seafood imports in order to protect the vaquita.