Feds call for ban on salmon fishing as population plummets

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared a state of emergency in California as a result of the unprecedented closure of coastal salmon fishing by the Pacific Fishery Management Council.

The council voted to recommend the closure Thursday after a sharp drop in the chinook population in the state's Central Valley. Last year's run was the second-lowest in more than 35 years of record-keeping, and this year's run is expected to be worse. Biologists blame poor ocean conditions, possibly caused by climate change.

The closure is predicted to cost California $255 million and 2,263 jobs this year, according to estimates by the Department of Fish and Game. The closure muyst still be approved by the National Marine Fisheries Service, but that approval is expected later this month. The California Fish and Game Commission is expected to impose similar closures in state waters next week.

Read the full story at