January 20, 2016
Governor Jay Inslee announced the second phase of the Washington Shellfish Initiative, a partnership of local, state, and federal partners from government, business, tribes, and nonprofit groups. The Initiative’s efforts to tackle pollution in Puget Sound and coastal waters have successfully led to the reopening of shellfish beds and, through a new shellfish restoration hatchery, native shellfish restoration efforts are growing. Washington’s $184 million shellfish industry supports approximately 2,700 jobs.
Leaders from the partnership convened at the National Fish & Oyster Company in Olympia on January 15 for a recommitment to protecting and strengthening shellfish resources and Washington’s shellfish industry. They launched Phase 2 to continue their efforts with goals of ensuring clean water, improving shellfish aquaculture permitting, enhancing recreational harvest, and more. The governor gave brief remarks at the event, joined by NOAA Regional Administrator Will Stelle, Congressman Denny Heck, State Conservationist Roylene Rides-at-the-Door, and tribal and shellfish industry leaders.