Steve Bittenbender

Contributing Editor

Steve Bittenbender works as a freelance journalist based in Louisville, Kentucky. Besides working for SeafoodSource.com as a contributing editor, Steve also works as an editor for Government Security News and as the Kentucky correspondent for the Reuters News Service. He also works as a sports writer for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal and The Associated Press. He has received awards from the Kentucky Press Association and the Louisville Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for his on-going and enterprise reporting work.

Published on
December 11, 2019

The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday, 10 December, passed legislation that would help ensure those who make a living on the water will have the space and resources they need to do their job.

U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) said that while 30,000 residents of her state rely on marine industries, such as commercial fishing, only 20 miles of Maine’s shoreline is considered suitable for work. That’s why she sponsored HR 3596,

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Published on
December 10, 2019

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren unveiled her “Blue New Deal” on Tuesday, 10 December, outlining her plans to protect the oceans and build up the fishing industry in the United States.

The idea, Warren said in a statement on her campaign website, came after hearing from an oyster farmer at a televised town hall appearance. It’s currently a critical time for the oceans as the water is becoming warmer and more

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Published on
November 27, 2019

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has asked U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to act against a company that has exceeded the catch limit on menhaden in the Chesapeake Bay this year.

In a letter sent last week, Northam called on Ross to set a moratorium on menhaden fishing in the bay. That action comes less than a month after the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission unanimously found the menhaden fishery out of compliance for surpassing

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Published on
November 27, 2019

The International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas ended its annual meeting on Monday, 25 November, with members unable to approve a recovery plan conservationists believe is essential for the long-term survival of shortfin mako sharks.

At least two groups pinned the blame on the United States and the European Union. During the weeklong meeting in Mallorca, Spain, it was decided that the commission would continue to use

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Published on
November 26, 2019

A bill that prohibits people from selling or buying shark fins cleared its first hurdle in Congress last week.

H.R. 737, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Gregorio Sablan (D-Northern Mariana Islands) and co-sponsored by U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), passed 310-107 on Wednesday 20 November.

In a statement, Sablan said the measure would help get the United States out of the business of trading shark fins.

“Our legislation is an effective, no-cost

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Published on
November 20, 2019

Two of the key fishing legislators on opposite sides of the aisle have come together to file a bill that would require commercial and recreational fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico to use descenders when releasing reef fish back into the water ...

Photo courtesy of Geza

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Published on
November 20, 2019

Two industry groups testified before a congressional committee last week during a hearing addressing the impact illegal fishing has on the nation’s seafood trade – which led to a disagreement over the implementation of the Seafood Import Monitoring Program (SIMP) ...

Photo courtesy of Two Bridges

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Published on
November 15, 2019

Three members of Maine’s Congressional delegation are once again pressing the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump to help out the state’s lobstermen ... 

Photo courtesy of

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Published on
November 15, 2019

A U.S. Senate committee earlier this week passed a bill that would make changes to how NOAA Fisheries disaster relief program is managed.

On Wednesday, 13 November, the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee passed S. 2346, the Fishery Failures: Urgently Needed Disaster Declarations Act. The bill sponsored by U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi), the committee’s chairman, calls for the disaster declaration to be

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Published on
October 31, 2019

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission voted unanimously on Thursday, 31 October, to rule Virginia out of compliance for its menhaden fishery. The move comes two days after its Atlantic Menhaden Management Board recommended the action.

The ASMFC had been considering action for at least 18 months, since the state of Virginia has failed to codify the 51,000-metric-ton catch limit on menhaden in Chesapeake Bay. Last month, Omega Protein

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