Aleutians Pacific Cod on NPFMC Agenda

Final action is slated for the Oct. 5-13 meeting of the
North Pacific Fishery Management Council in Anchorage on Aleutian Island
Pacific cod catcher vessel fishery and shore plant delivery requirements.
A council document prepared for the October meeting analyzes
proposed management measures that would prioritize a portion of that P-cod
total allowable catch for access by catcher vessels and require that it be
delivered to shoreside plants in the Aleutian Islands, with some constraints on
the amount and dates by which the provisions would be removed.
To accommodate the Aleutian Island P-cod fishery for trawl
catcher vessels, the proposed action would also limit harvest of the A season
trawl catcher vessel sector’s Bering Sea Pacific cod allocation so as not to
allow the sector to harvest its entire A season allocations in the Bering Sea
prior to the start of the A season Aleutian Island Pacific cod fishery.
The document, which is available online at the council
website,, notes that for several years the council has
requested information to help determine the need for community protections in
the Aleutians in response to implementation of rationalization programs for
various fisheries. Rationalization has resulted in excess processing capacity
that has been used in the Aleutian Island P-cod fishery, the document noted.
These specific rationalization programs include the American
Fisheries Act, Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands crab rationalization, and BSAI
Amendment 80.
The programs offer benefits to processing vessels and afford
opportunity for consolidation, thereby freeing some processing capacity to
target the non-rationalized BSAI P-cod fishery.

At the same time, the council delayed action on Aleutian
Island community protections, in order to anticipate the effects of several
dynamic factors in that cod fishery, not the least of which has been the
anticipation of a BSAI total allowable catch split and Steller sea lion
protection measures.