Right Whale Protection

FILE - In this March 28, 2018 file photo, a North Atlantic right whale feeds on the surface of Cape Cod bay off the coast of Plymouth, Mass. On Thursday, June 27, 2019, Maine lobstermen are scheduled to have their final meeting with state officials about new protections for right whales. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

PORTLAND, Maine (AP/Meredith) — Maine Gov. Janet Mills says a federal directive aimed at protecting endangered right whales represents an "absurd federal overreach."

She says she's telling the state to come up with its own proposal with a lesser impact on lobster fishermen.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration wants Maine to present a plan in September for reducing the lobster industry's threat to right whales by 60 percent.

The plan would mean reducing by half the number of lobster trap lines that could entangle whales.

But the Democratic governor says that Maine's lobster industry isn't the "primary problem" and that bureaucrats shouldn't undermine the industry with "foolish, unsupported, and ill-advised regulations."

Maine's congressional delegation, which supports Mills, says a "science-informed and equitable solution" is needed to protect the whales, which number around 400.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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