The mainland Aquarium Pet Trade is now applying to collect Oahu’s reef wildlife for the international pet trade. Written testimony is due by 9 am Thursday, 7 October. Please see below for more details. Mahalo to our partners at For the Fishes for keeping us informed.
Aloha Friends of the Fishes – our reef wildlife needs your voice!
Public testimony is being accepted on a deeply flawed Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) proposed by the mainland pet trade to allow 15 unidentified aquarium collectors to annually take hundreds of thousands of reef animals from O’ahu’s reefs.
Please testify and urge the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) to REJECT the FEIS aimed at reopening Oahu’s deadly aquarium trade! Deadline Thurs. Oct. 7 by 9 am!
The very survival of O’ahu’s dwindling marine species is at stake. Decades of unlimited aquarium collection on O’ahu have led to a 90% reduction of the most heavily targeted species. Yet, the FEIS totally ignores this, proposing levels of take that far exceed reported historical catch for most species.
Scroll down for testimony instructions.
The FEIS ignores data and research documenting the impacts of their actions, such as:
research documenting the 90% reduction of key species described above
a paper describing the collapse of the aquarium fishery on O’ahu’s southwest reefs 35 years ago — which have yet to recover
research documenting that Hawai’i residents receive ZERO benefits from the trade, but suffer ALL the costs.
Additionally, the required Cultural Impact Assessment claimed the EIS proposal would close 21% of Windward coast to collection, YET the FEIS proposes no such closures.
The entire FEIS is designed to facilitate their forgone conclusion that taking large numbers of marine animals and selling them to the aquarium pet trade outside Hawai’i has no significant impact on cultural, biological, and socioeconomic resources. They do so by claiming that aquarium trade operations would take a small percentage of the entire island-wide populations of the species they target, yet nothing would prevent the collecting of species to the point of collapse in specific places, such as occurred in the past!
Your testimony is urgently needed. We, like our reefs and marine ecosystems, are all connected. Adding your voice will help ensure O’ahu’s reef animals remain protected today and for future generations!
This issue will be decided on Friday, Oct. 8, at 9:00 am, by the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR). Testimony deadline is 24h prior to that meeting.
PRIORITY ACTION 1 – WRITTEN TESTIMONY:
Email: BLNR.TESTIMONY@HAWAII.GOV Email Subject: Agenda Item F.1 Testimony
1. Identify yourself as a Hawai’i resident and ask BLNR to REJECT the EIS!
2. Share your concerns – a few sentences from the heart.
The Final Environmental Impact Statement can be found online HERE
ACTION 2 – SPREAD THE WORD:
Please forward this email to your friends and family and share on social media.
LIVE TESTIMONY OPPORTUNITY: Want to speak directly to the decision-makers? Anyone wishing to present live testimony, please make this request when submitting your written testimony; provide your full name, email, phone number, and “Agenda Item F.1” and whether you would like to participate via phone or Zoom link. BLNR will send you a confirmation with additional instructions and the Zoom meeting link. Deadline to submit testimony/request live testimony is 24 hours prior to meeting These and other details can also be found in the agenda HERE. Call BLNR staff with technical questions: 808-587-0404
P.S. Public testimony will be taken when each agenda item is discussed. You can monitor meeting progress via YouTube livestream HERE.