Case Summary Citation

Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association v. Ross, ___ F. Supp. 3d ___, 2018 U.S. Dist. Lexis 172151, 2018 WL 4853901 (D.D.C. Oct. 5, 2018)


President Obama established the first––and only––national monument in the Atlantic Ocean on September 15, 2016. Located 130 miles southeast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and comprised of 4,913 square miles of marine ecosystems rich in biodiversity, the protected area includes four underwater mountains and three submarine canyons. Plaintiff commercial lobster and fishing associations, seeking to overturn the designation, asserted that the Antiquities Act does not permit a president to establish marine national monuments. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia disagreed, upholding a president’s authority to protect offshore areas and vast ecosystems as objects of scientific interest, and dismissing the Lobstermen’s case in a memorandum opinion splashed with maritime references.



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