WASHINGTON – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and NOAA Fisheries recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the National Marine Manufacturers Association, the American Sportfishing Association, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation to improve communication and engagement around sustainable recreational fishing and boating activities. Maite Arce, president and CEO of Hispanic Access Foundation, released the following statement:
“For many Latinos and other diverse urban communities, fishing provides an opportunity for families to spend time together and connect with nature. Fishing is an activity the entire family can join in, from the youngest of kids to the eldest of grandparents.
“As the demographics of our nation continues to shift, the future of fishing and boating depends on engaging younger and more diverse audiences. By offering hands-on education and activities that expand access for new communities and allow individuals to experience the excitement when they reel in their first fish, a lasting impact is created that establishes a path to stewardship and potential career opportunities in conservation.
“We applaud NOAA and its partners for their dedication to improve and increase participation in recreational boating and fishing, thereby helping to conserve and restore our country’s aquatic natural resources. NOAA’s agreement will help ensure that sustainable recreational fishing and boating continue to benefit coastal communities, enrich the lives of millions, and inspire a culture of conservation.”
The purpose and objectives of NOAA’s new agreement are to promote domestic commercial and recreational fishing under sound conservation and management, as well as create and promote initiatives to actively engage the recreational fishing community in 2019-2020.