Description: Lawsuit to compel the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to issue updated stock assessment reports under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, including for species threatened by climate change impacts.
Center for Biological Diversity v. de la Vega
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 02/18/2021 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Lawsuit Alleged Failure to Update Stock Assessments for Marine Mammals to Reflect Climate Change Impacts and Other New Information. Two organizations filed a lawsuit in the federal district court for the Northern District of California asserting that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had failed to comply with its non-discretionary obligation to issue updated stock assessment reports under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The plaintiffs alleged that despite the MMPA’s requirement that the stock assessments be updated every year or every three years, depending on a species’ vulnerability, the stock assessments for some species had not been updated for more than a decade even though significant new information—including, for example, the depletion of sea ice on which polar bears and walruses depend and the impacts on sea otters from the die-off of kelp stemming from climate change—had become available.