Jump to main content.

Gulf of Mexico Shellfish Challenge

The Gulf of Mexico is the top shellfish-producing region in the nation. In 1994, over 27 million pounds of oysters were landed from Gulf waters with a value of about $96 million (National Marine Fisheries Service, 1995). However, over half of the nine million acres of shellfish growing waters in the region have regulatory limitations on harvest (1995 National Shellfish Register, 1996). These closures and limitations are due to a variety of reasons, ranging from administrative rules to degraded water quality.

The Gulf of Mexico Program, a cooperative partnership among federal, state, and local government agencies, industry, and citizens to improve the environmental water quality of the region, has recognized the importance of shellfish bed closures as an indicator of the potential decline in coastal water quality. It has identified the restoration of shellfish acreage as one of its top environmental objectives, and the Program partners have pledged to work together to meet the Shellfish Challenge to: "increase Gulf shellfish beds available for safe harvesting by 10 percent."

You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view a number of Adobe PDF documents. Click here to read About Portable Document Format Files.

Gulf of Mexico Program Office
Mail Code: EPA/GMPO
Stennis Space Center, MS 39529-6000
FAX: 228-688-2709

Local Navigation

Jump to main content.