Participation in the Oyster Shell Recycling Program
Continues to Grow
John Nagle, a seafood wholesaler has involved MOP in the Boston Seafood Festival and been a general supporter. The company has also put its intention into action by saving shell for recycling. Sunday we picked up a batch of shell which is in transit to our reprocessing facility.
|Oyster Restoration Supporter and Shell Recycling Participant|
John Nagle Co., a full-line wholesaler of fresh and frozen
seafood, was founded in 1887 by John J. Nagle. Since then, four generations of
the Nagle family have upheld their strong commitment to family traditions and
values within the seafood industry. The founder’s great-grandson, Charles
Nagle, is the company’s current president.
Drakes Bay Oyster Farm Pot Continues to Boil
It was disappointing when the National Parks Service issued
an edict shutting down the Drakes Bay Oyster Farm putting 31 people out of work. An oyster farm has minimal environmental
impact and many benefits. But the shut
down is continuing to give other groups pause as it is establishing a precedent
that could be applicable to agricultural usage of public lands across the west.
Many farmers graze cattle on federal lands, if the Interior Department decides
similarly that these lands should be returned to the pristine state, then they
can unilaterally close other areas.
Part 1. Below is
a letter from the California Farm Bureau Federation President.
President's message: Why the Drakes Bay Oyster
Wenger. President, CFBF
week, the California Farm Bureau Federation, the Marin County Farm Bureau and
the Sonoma County Farm Bureau joined in a petition to a federal appeals court,
urging the court to give the Drakes Bay Oyster Co. a new hearing—and a new
chance to continue its sustainable aquaculture operation.
company and its owners, Kevin and Nancy Lunny, carry on a decades-long
tradition of mariculture in Drakes Estero. The oyster farming operation has
been there since the 1930s—so long that few people remember the estero before
the farm existed. It was there long before the Point Reyes National Seashore
was established in 1960.
a record as excellent stewards of the land and of the estero, the Lunnys and
their farm face eviction. The
National Park Service determined that the oyster farm had to go and pulled out
all the stops in its efforts to evict the farm, even though its presence adds
to the overall character of the area. The Lunnys, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Farm
Bureau and other advocates have pointed out a long history of shoddy, slanted
pseudo-science used by the Park Service in an effort to justify removing the
protests from the West Marin community, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar decided
last November that the farm would have to leave when its lease expired. Only a
last-minute stay from a federal court last month allowed the Lunnys to remain
in business, while the court considers their appeal.
you've been following the case like I have, you know that Drakes Bay Oyster Co.
is a prime example of the local, sustainable agriculture that many Bay Area
residents prize. If you haven't been following the case, you might be surprised
by the range of individuals, groups and organizations that joined together in
the petition last week on behalf of the Lunnys.
with CFBF and the two county Farm Bureaus, the petitioners included famed
Berkeley chef Alice Waters; the Hayes Street Grill, a fish restaurant in San
Francisco; the Tomales Bay Oyster Co.; the Marin County agricultural
commissioner; Food Democracy Now; Marin Organic; and the Alliance for Local
Sustainable Agriculture. These
folks may all come at this issue from different angles, but we end up at the
same place: What's happening to the Drakes Bay Oyster Co. is wrong.
petition was written by Judith Teichman, a San Francisco attorney who assembled
the coalition favoring the farm's continued operation. It notes that closing
down Drakes Estero as a source of fresh, sustainably raised shellfish would
wreak havoc with the world-famous local, sustainable food and agriculture of
the Bay Area. It would also disrupt shellfish cultivation on Tomales Bay. It
would put 31 people out of work, some of whom have worked for the oyster farm
for 30 years.
the oyster company would also be a serious setback for modern environmental
thinking, the petition says. Leading voices in the environmental movement have
called for 21st century conservationists to embrace a more people-friendly
ethic that supports working landscapes—just the sort of operation that Drakes
Bay Oyster Co. represents. Old-fashioned
environmental activists want to force people off the land, to return it to some
sort of pre-human condition. That thinking leads to confrontation instead of
collaboration, and to situations where progressive, thoughtful farmers and
ranchers like the Lunnys get pushed aside because of someone's interpretation
of the purity of nature.
Farm Bureau, the case has implications beyond Drakes Estero.
of the land in California is owned by the federal or state government. Rural
communities, where many Farm Bureau members live and work, depend on multiple
use of these lands. National parks and wilderness areas operate under
land-management rules that allow for human presence and use, even when the
primary mandate is for preservation and environmental protection.
ban an operation such as Drakes Bay Oyster Co. on the ideological belief that
it should not exist in a national park or wilderness area—despite evidence that
the farm provides important economic, cultural and social benefits—sets an
awful precedent for everyone who believes that humans and nature can and must
why Farm Bureau supports the Lunnys and Drakes Bay Oyster Co. If the
bureaucrats and the kick-the-humans-out branch of environmentalism can run the
Lunnys out, you can bet they'll keep trying to throttle more wise uses of
narrow, preservationist vision never worked and doesn't now. The appeals court
will hear the oyster farm's case in May, and we hope it will restore common
sense to the management of the Point Reyes National Seashore.
Part 2. Washington
Politicians are noticing that the bureaucracy may have
deviated from popular opinion in the Drakes Bay situation and are getting
involved. Ironically, a provision that would allow for the oyster farm to
continue operation for 20 years has been embedded into a bill that is generally
not environmentally friendly.The following article was published in the online version of the Santa Rosa, California Press Democrat. The parent of today's Press
Democrat, was begun in 1857, just three years after Santa Rosa was
chosen as the seat of Sonoma County and seven years after California
became a part of the United States.
Republican bill in Congress intended to boost jobs and tax revenue through
expanded offshore oil drilling, approval of the Keystone XL pipeline and other
measures also would allow Drakes Bay Oyster Co. to stay in business, saving 30
jobs on the Marin County coast.
David Vitter, R-La., who introduced the legislation in the Senate, said in a
written statement that it would create 2 million jobs and generate more than $2
trillion in federal taxes over the next 30 years by "increasing access to
our domestic resources."Vitter's
measure would open closed areas of the continental shelf to oil and gas
leasing, allow energy development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and
expedite approval of the $7 billion pipeline carrying Canadian heavy crude oil
to Gulf Coast refineries.
final section of the bill, titled the Energy Production and Project Delivery
Act of 2013, would grant the oyster company in the Point Reyes National
Seashore a permit for up to 20 years.
also says that the 2,500-acre estero "shall not be converted to a
designated wilderness," apparently reversing the intent established by
Congress in 1976.
Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael, whose district includes Point Reyes, called the
bill "an environmental wrecking ball." Huffman,
who sits on the House Natural Resources Committee, noted that the bill also
would prohibit California from limiting Central Valley Project water deliveries
based on the Endangered Species Act. Huffman
said he found it "pretty surprising" that the oyster company's permit
was included in a bill focused on much larger issues.
operator of the embattled oyster farm on Drakes Estero, said Thursday that he
did not ask for and was not advised of the bill's reference to his permit, a
source of controversy for years in Marin County.
members of Congress do, I guess," Lunny said. "We didn't know it was
fighting in federal court a National Park Service order to shut down his
business, which harvests $1.5 million worth of oysters a year from the estero.
The 9th Circuit
Court of Appeals has agreed to hear his appeal the week of May 13. His case is
being handled without charge by a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit, Cause of
Action, whose executive director previously worked for a charitable foundation
run by one of the billionaire Koch brothers, known for their conservative
politics. Legal experts
say the oyster farm case could set a precedent that promotes commercial use of
national parks and wilderness areas throughout the western United States.
former environmental attorney, said that the Vitter bill and its backers are
"bad company for Kevin and his supporters to keep." Co-sponsored by
22 other Republican senators, Vitter's bill is backed by the U.S. Chamber of
Commerce, Western Business Roundtable, Americans for Limited Government and
Americans for Prosperity.
bill is terrible," said Amy Trainer, executive director of the
Environmental Action Committee of West Marin, which has fought to remove the
oyster farm from the Pacific Ocean estuary that is abundant in wildlife,
including a harbor seal colony. Trainer and
Huffman said the bill might win approval in the Republican-controlled House but
not the Senate. Their concern is that some provisions might be separately
tacked onto "must-pass" pieces of legislation.
Lunny said most
of his support over the years has come from North Bay Democrats who favor
never had support from the Republicans," he said.
Lunny said he
does not agree with all of the provisions in Vitter's bill, which was
introduced in the House by Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, chairman of the House
Natural Resources Public Lands and Environmental Regulation subcommittee.