FRISCO — A long-running battle over an oyster farm at Pt. Reyes National Seashore may be winding down. The National Park Service says a settlement agreement would, if approved by a federal court, would require the Drake Bay Oyster Company to cease operations by the end of the year.
The proposed consent decree would allow the National Park Service to remove onshore and offshore infrastructure associated with shellfish cultivation concurrently with the company's removal of shellfish.
Drakes Estero is part of Point Reyes National Seashore, designated by Congress in 1962 as a unit of the national park system to protect more than 80 miles of California coastline. The oyster farming operation has been under scrutiny for years. In 2011, a report from the Marine Mammal Commission concluded that the aquaculture activities were probably harming sensitive marine resources.
The National Park Service says the proposed agreement would enable the agency to manage the area as part of the Philip Burton Wilderness, the only marine wilderness on the west coast outside of Alaska.
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