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

  • Jealous folksinger assassinates hubby, playmates [Photos]

    World News Toronto Sun
    Gio Gambino was concerned about his wife. Crystal Leah Gambino was described by family members as “moderately crazy” and her hubby was worried about her deteriorating mental state. “Everybody liked Gio,” her cousin Bob Hager told the Charlotte Observer. Source
  • Explosions hit near major soccer stadium in Istanbul, wounding 20

    World News CBC News
    Two explosions hit Saturday night near a major soccer stadium in Istanbul, and Turkish authorities say about 20 police have been wounded. Witnesses said police were deployed and had cordoned off the area as smoke rose from the newly built Besiktas Stadium. Source
  • Two explosions heard near Istanbul soccer stadium; 20 wounded

    World News CTV News
    ISTANBUL -- Two explosions hit Saturday night outside a major soccer stadium in Istanbul, and Turkish authorities say about 20 police officers have been wounded. Police cordoned off the area as smoke rose from the newly built Besiktas Stadium. Source
  • Non-OPEC oil producers to cut output 558,000 barrels a day

    World News CBC News
    OPEC has persuaded 11 non-members to cut oil production, a move aimed at draining a worldwide oil glut and boosting low prices that have squeezed government finances in Russia and Saudi Arabia. Officials said Saturday that non-members agreed to cut 558,000 barrels per day for six months starting Jan. Source
  • Bill to simplify border crossing passes U.S. Congress

    World News CBC News
    A bill with potentially sweeping consequences for the Canada-U.S. border has just been adopted by the American Congress, allowing new projects aimed at speeding up travel through the international boundary. The so-called preclearance bill has now been adopted by both U.S. Source
  • Death toll hits 45 in Yemen suicide bombing

    World News CTV News
    SANAA, Yemen -- A suicide bomber on Saturday blew himself up inside an army base in the southern city of Aden, killing 45 soldiers and wounding another 50, security officials said. They said the bomber detonated a belt of explosives he was wearing amid hundreds of soldiers lining up to collect their salaries in the city's Solban army base. Source
  • Venezuela seizes nearly 4M toys, will give them to poor kids

    World News CTV News
    BOGOTA -- Venezuela's socialist government has seized nearly 4 million toys from a private company and says it will hand them out as Christmas gifts to poor children this holiday season. The country's fair pricing authority seized the toys Friday from three warehouses run by Kreisel, Venezuela's largest toy distributor. Source
  • White supremacists? Not exactly, KKK and other groups claim

    World News CTV News
    PELHAM, N.C. -- In today's racially charged environment, there's a label that even the KKK disavows: white supremacy. Standing on a muddy dirt road in the dead of night near the North Carolina-Virginia border, masked Ku Klux Klan members claimed Donald Trump's election as president proves whites are taking back America from blacks, immigrants, Jews and other groups they describe as criminals and freeloaders. Source
  • ISIS re-enters Syria's historic Palmyra

    World News CBC News
    Syrian activists say the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group (ISIS) has re-entered the historic city of Palmyra in central Syria, nine months after they were expelled by Syrian and Russian forces in a highly publicized campaign. Source
  • 'I'm sorry, I'm so nervous': Patti Smith forgets Bob Dylan lines during Nobel Prize performance

    World News CBC News
    Even well-known musicians who have been performing for decades get nervous and Patti Smith is no exception. The Because the Night singer-songwriter attended the Nobel Prize presentation ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden, on Saturday to perform in place of Bob Dylan, who was awarded the literature prize but couldn't attend. Source