SeaWorld launches lawsuit against California commission over orca breeding ban

SAN DIEGO - SeaWorld filed a lawsuit Tuesday challenging a California commission's ruling that bans the company from breeding captive killer whales at its San Diego park.

See Full Article

The suit filed in San Diego County Superior Court says the California Coastal Commission was outside its authority when it made the ruling on breeding in October.

The commission endorsed a $100 million expansion of the tanks known as "Blue World" that SeaWorld uses to hold orcas, but in a surprising and serious blow to the park, included a ban on breeding at the planned facility and prohibitions on the sale, trade or transfer of the whales.

The commission had to approve the project as it does all major building plans in coastal cities, but the park's attorneys argued the agency's authority should have ended with the structure itself.

"This last-minute 'no breeding or transfer' condition is unprecedented," SeaWorld said in the lawsuit, which claims the commission's action is illegal because it has no jurisdiction over the orcas.

"The orcas are not, in any way, part of the coastal or marine environment," the lawsuit says. "All of SeaWorld's activities with respect to the care, breeding and transportation of orcas occur onshore in the orca pools and not in the marine environment and are specifically governed by federal law."

Noaki Schwartz, spokeswoman for the Coastal Commission, said the agency could not comment on the particulars of the lawsuit, but the commission said in a statement that it "stands by its decision in October to protect killer whales."

People For the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the main group opposing the project, said in a statement Tuesday that the commission was within its rights and made the correct decision.

"It's clear that the company's primary intention in pursuing the Blue World Project was to breed more orcas to confine to tanks," PETA said in a statement.

SeaWorld said in October that it would challenge the decision and that it had hired attorneys to examine it but did not give specifics before filing the lawsuit Tuesday.

Last month, the Orlando, Florida-based company said it would end theatrical orca shows at the San Diego park after visitors at the tourist attraction made it clear they prefer seeing killer whales act naturally rather than doing tricks.

The shows will continue at the company's Orlando and San Antonio parks, which are not affected by the breeding ban.



Advertisements

Latest Economic News

  • CIBC considering U.S. stock listing for Caribbean banking subsidiary

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO -- Canadian Imperial Bank Of Commerce is considering a U.S. stock listing for its Caribbean bank subsidiary. The Canadian bank says no decision has been made, but a U.S. listing would provide FirstCaribbean International Bank access to a larger investor base, enhanced liquidity and greater access to capital to support long-term growth. Source
  • Bombardier meets with its unions as U.S. Commerce Department decision looms

    Economic CTV News
    MONTREAL -- A meeting between Bombardier management and union leaders is taking place today with the U.S. Commerce Department's proposed 300 per cent duty on all imports of its C Series planes on the menu. Source
  • Empire Co. Ltd. plans to expand FreshCo grocery banner in Western Canada

    Economic CTV News
    STELLARTON, N.S. - Empire Co. Ltd. is planning to convert up to a quarter of its 255 Safeway and Sobeys stores in Western Canada to its discount FreshCo banner over the next five years. The company (TSX:EMP.A) made the announcement as it posted a loss in its latest quarter as it was hit by restructuring costs. Source
  • Faulty rollover bar prompts recall of two John Deere utility tractors

    Economic CTV News
    OTTAWA -- Health Canada says a John Deere compact utility tractor is being recalled due to a safety hazard. The agency, in conjunction with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, says the rollover protective bar at the back of the tractor can loosen and fail in a rollover accident, which could result in serious injury or death. Source
  • Canadians expected to pay more to dine out in 2018

    Economic CBC News
    Look out vegetarians — fresh produce and restaurant meals are going to cost you more in 2018. According to the latest annual Canada's Food Price Report by researchers at Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph, food prices at restaurants are forecast to rise between four and six per cent in 2018, much higher than the one to three per cent increase restaurants typically experience. Source
  • How an expected U.S. interest rate increase will affect Canadians: Don Pittis

    Economic CBC News
    In a few hours we'll know for sure, but it seems like a foregone conclusion that Janet Yellen will use her last monetary policy news conference as chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise interest rates. Source
  • Asian stocks rise ahead of U.S. interest rate announcement

    Economic CTV News
    BEIJING - Asian stocks were mixed Wednesday following overnight gains on Wall Street as investors looked ahead to a likely U.S. interest rate hike. KEEPING SCORE: The Shanghai Composite Index was unchanged at 3,279.43 while Tokyo's Nikkei 225 lost 0.3 per cent to 22,805.80. Source
  • Global stocks steady ahead of expected Fed rate hike

    Economic CTV News
    LONDON -- Global stock markets traded in narrow ranges Wednesday ahead of an expected interest rate hike from the U.S. Federal Reserve. KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, Germany's DAX was down 0.1 per cent 13,172 while France's CAC-40 fell 0.3 per cent at 5,413. Source
  • Air Canada expanding codeshares for 2018 Canada-China Year of Tourism

    Economic CTV News
    MONTREAL - Air Canada (TSX:AC) and Air China Ltd. say they will be expanding their mutual codeshare services in time for the 2018 Canada-China Year of Tourism. Air China will place its code on Air Canada's new daily Montreal-Shanghai flight, as well as Air Canada's flights from Vancouver to Victoria, Kelowna, Saskatoon and Regina. Source
  • Canadian cellular prices declining, mainly for talk and text, report finds

    Economic CBC News
    Prices for cellphone service in Canada came down in the last year, but only if you don't use your cellphone very much. That's one of the major takeaways from a new report looking at telecom services and how they stack up with the rest of the world, and compared to what they used to be. Source