Description: Challenge to biological opinion for fishery management plan.
Oceana, Inc. v. Pritzker
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 12/17/2014 Opinion Download Opinion issued granting in part and denying in part both parties' motions for summary judgment. The federal district court for the District of Columbia rejected a challenge to the National Marine Fisheries Service’s (NMFS’s) issuance of a Biological Opinion determining that the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery would not jeopardize the survival of the Northwest Atlantic distinct population segment of loggerhead sea turtles. The court was not persuaded by the plaintiff’s claims that the no-jeopardy determination was arbitrary and capricious. The court rejected the argument that NMFS had not sufficiently considered the effects of climate change, finding that the plaintiff had failed to refute NMFS’s determination that current scientific data were too inconclusive to accurately predict impacts on loggerheads. The court distinguished earlier successful challenges of Biological Opinions where there were “wholesale failures to even address the issue” of climate change.