Larsen calls on Congress to end orca captivity once and for all

Feb 2, 2017 Issues: Environment

San Juan Islander: Larsen calls on Congress to end orca captivity once and for all 

Rep. Rick Larsen (WA-02) is once again cosponsoring the Orca Responsibility and Care Advancement (ORCA) Act, a bill that aims to end the captivity of orca whales once and for all.

The ORCA Act would permanently end orca captivity across the United States and prohibit orca breeding, the wild capture of orcas, and the import or export of orcas for purposes of public display.

“Orcas are an iconic and beloved part of Pacific Northwest culture,” Larsen said. “Passing the ORCA Act will ensure future generations of orcas stay where they belong: in the wild, not in captivity.” Larsen has a long record of fighting to protect the environment.

In 2016, President Obama signed the bipartisan Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act, authorizing an effort Larsen spearheaded to make the largest-ever investment in Puget Sound restoration as part of the Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project. In May of last year, Larsen’s bipartisan bill to fund the National Estuary Program – which supports the comprehensive plan for Puget Sound recovery – became law. Larsen also successfully fought to designate San Juan Islands National Monument in 2013 and to protect 106,577 acres of national forest as part of the Wild Sky Wilderness in 2008.