After four days and over thirty meetings with EPA, CEQ and congressional leaders, Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay representatives are back home in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. Our message to government officials was straightforward: No more delays, we need to protect Bristol Bay now. We reinforced this message with compelling testimony from commercial fishermen, the CEO of a Bristol Bay processing company, and strong economic data detailing the importance of the Bristol Bay fishery to Alaska, the Pacific Northwest and the nation.
We met with our Senators from Alaska and Washington State, and sat down with congressional Representatives from Alaska, the Pacific Northwest and across the country. Our message was well received, and we look forward to converting our growing congressional support into substantial action and the publication of the final Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment.
Bristol Bay is an economic powerhouse, but it is about more than just the numbers. Its sockeye salmon support an irreplaceable, sustainable livelihood to thousands of fishing families. This is our message, and we will continue to spread it far and wide until our fishery is permanently protected.
We had a great trip, but we are happy to put our ties and dress clothes away and continue our efforts to protect Bristol Bay at home. There is still much to do, and we look forward to keeping in touch with our supporters and letting you all know how you can help in the upcoming months before the salmon season.