Even in Playa Grande -- the last mass nesting beach in the Eastern Pacific for critically endangered leatherbacks -- menus largely feature seafood caught by longlines and trawling nets, fishing practices that have devastating impacts on sea turtles.
Facing opposition from lawmakers and pressure from environmental groups, government fishing authorities pulled a controversial shrimp trawling bill from the legislative agenda last week. If passed, the bill would have reinstated shrimp trawling in Costa Rican waters.
The Bill for the Development and Sustainable Exploitation of Shrimp in Costa Rica, drafted and submitted by President Luis Guillermo Solís’ administration, would allow shrimp trawlers to reinstate banned licenses while the government conducts economic and environmental studies.
Carrying signs, horns and noisemakers, hundreds of shrimp fishermen marched outside the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday to protest the permanent expiration of another shrimp trawling license following the country's trawling ban.