SeaWorld suing California over ban on orca breeding

SAN DIEGO -- A California commission was overreaching when it banned the breeding of captive killer whales at a $100 million planned exhibit at San Diego's SeaWorld, the park claimed in a lawsuit.

See Full Article

The suit filed Tuesday in San Diego County Superior Court asserts that the park's treatment of its whales is subject to federal law and not the decisions of the California Coastal Commission, which must approve major new building developments in coastal cities.

The commission endorsed the orca tank expansion known as "Blue World," 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.

"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 Canada & World News

  • Wildrose votes yes to unity with 95% of the vote

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    The Wildrose Party approved unifying with Progressive Conservatives in an historic vote Saturday. Just over ninety-five per cent of Wildrose members voted yes for unity, well above the 75 per cent majority it needed to give the merger a go-ahead. Source
  • 9/11 victim's wife disgusted by $10.5M Khadr deal [Photos]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    The widow of a Toronto businessman killed in the World Trade Centre on 9/11 says its sickening that the Liberal government has allowed terrorist Omar Khadr to play the victim card and collect $10.5 million. Maureen Basnicki’s husband, Ken Basnicki, was in New York City on business when he was killed in the North Tower on Sept. Source
  • B.C. transgender inmate wins women's prison transfer request

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    VANCOUVER — A transgender inmate in British Columbia has won a years-long battle to serve the remainder of her sentence for first-degree murder at a women’s prison. Fallon Aubee is one of the first federal prisoners to relocate under policy changes at Correctional Services Canada that allow inmates to transfer facilities based on gender identity and not physical anatomy, said Jennifer Metcalfe, a spokeswoman for the West Coast Prison Justice Society. Source
  • U.S. Congress strikes deal on sanctions bill, handcuffing Trump on Russia

    World News CBC News
    U.S. Republicans and Democrats have reached agreement on legislation that allows new sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea, leading congressional Democrats said on Saturday, in a bill that would limit any potential effort by President Donald Trump to try to lift sanctions against Moscow. Source
  • Williams Lake mayor hopes residents can return early next week

    Canada News CTV News
    The mayor of Williams Lake, B.C, a community evacuated one week ago due to the threat of raging wildfires, says he’s hopeful that some residents can return early next week. Mayor Walt Cobb told CTV News Channel on Saturday that the fires burning in the region have moved away from the city of 11,000, creating a “a much safer situation. Source
  • Trudeau marches in Halifax Pride Parade

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    HALIFAX — Throngs of people lined the streets of downtown Halifax Saturday to see a sitting prime minister walk in the city’s Pride parade for the first time. The rainbow-clad crowd erupted in cheers as Justin Trudeau marched in the procession with his family at his side. Source
  • Protestors, police clash again in bitter fight for Venezuela's constitution

    World News CBC News
    Protesters rallied Saturday in the Venezuelan capital for a march toward the embattled nation's Supreme Court, chanting slogans opposing President Nicolas Maduro's plan to rewrite the constitution. Organizers hope the opposition-led demonstration will send a forceful message to Maduro to cancel a July 30 election for delegates to a constitutional assembly that would be tasked with overhauling the nation's charter. Source
  • Fire burning near Banff covers 4,100 hectares: Parks Canada

    Canada News CTV News
    BANFF, Alta. -- Parks Canada says it has been able to get a better idea of the size of a wildfire that's been burning close to Banff. The agency says its fire management personnel were able to fly around the perimeter of the Verdant Creek fire on Friday and determined it covers approximately 4,100 hectares. Source
  • Indigenous Games: Akwesasne athlete inspires women by breaking barriers

    Canada News CBC News
    Kawehnokwiio Bailey Thomas buried her face in her jersey as tears came down the side of her face. She and team Eastern Door and the North (EDN) fell in straight sets to team Newfoundland and Labrador to finish 10th in the U19 female volleyball competition at the North American Indigenous Games (NAIG). Source
  • Gacy nightmare never ends

    World News Toronto Sun
    Fat John Wayne Gacy wolfed down a bucket of KFC, shrimp, fries and a Diet Coke. By 12:58 a.m. on May 10, 1994 he was pronounced dead and sent to the morgue with his evil name on a toe-tag. Source