Tag: fisheries

NOAA Fisheries Seeks Public Comment on Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management Road Map
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NOAA Fisheries Seeks Public Comment on Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management Road Map

NOAA Fisheries is accepting public comment through Aug. 31 via email to nmfs.ebfm.roadmap@noaa.gov regarding its updated Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management Road Map (EBFM), which is subject to periodic review. Ecosystem-based fisheries management is defined by NOAA as an integrated, science-based approach to fisheries management in a geographically specific area that contributes to the resilience and sustainability of the ecosystem and optimizes benefits among a diverse set of societal goals. NOAA's first EBFM roadmap was established in 2016 to provide guidance on the agency's policy shift toward implementing ecosystem-level planning for fisheries. This style of management involves setting quotas and also considering how individual species’ fit into the wider ecosystem, rather than ...
NOAA Fisheries Issues Final Rule Implementing Pacific Whiting Fishery
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NOAA Fisheries Issues Final Rule Implementing Pacific Whiting Fishery

Federal fisheries officials have implemented the domestic 2024 harvest specifications for Pacific whiting fisheries off the coasts of Washington, Oregon and California, including the 2024 Tribal allocation for the Pacific whiting fishery, the non-tribal sector allocations, and a set-aside for incidental mortality in research activities and non-groundfish fisheries. The National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries) issued the rule effective June 24 for the Pacific whiting fishery under the authority of the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Pacific Whiting Act of 2006, and other applicable laws. The rule was published in the Federal Register. These measures are intended to help prevent overfis...
$12M For Alaska, Washington Fisheries Disasters Allocated by Commerce Dept.
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$12M For Alaska, Washington Fisheries Disasters Allocated by Commerce Dept.

U.S. Commerce Department officials have announced the allocation of $12.2 million to address fishery resource disasters in Alaska and Washington State through 2022 and 2023 Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations Acts. The allocations for Alaska’s 2022 Kuskokwim River salmon fishery, 2021 and 2022 Upper Cook Inlet East Side Setnet salmon fishery and the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe’s 2021 Puget Sound fall chum and coho salmon fisheries can be used to fund commercial, recreational, tribal fishing communities and subsistence users, as well as other associated industries affected by the disaster. “This funding will assist with the recovery of salmon fisheries in communities across Alaska and Puget Sound by bolstering fisheries restoration efforts, minimizing the risk of future di...
NOAA Fisheries Updates Efforts on Wild Fish Conservancy Remand
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NOAA Fisheries Updates Efforts on Wild Fish Conservancy Remand

NOAA Fisheries officials say they are working to complete the analyses required by a district court under remand in the Wild Fish Conservancy litigation involving Chinook salmon. The federal agency announced May 31 that it’s finalizing a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement on Expenditure of Funds to Increase Prey Availability for Southern Resident Killer Whales and an associated Endangered Species Act Biological Opinion, for a prey increase program that mitigates the impacts from the U.S. salmon fisheries managed under the 2019 Pacific Salmon Treaty. NOAA is also finalizing an environmental impact statement for the issuance of an Incidental Take Statement Under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) for Salmon Fisheries in Southeast Alaska subject to the 2019 Pacific Salmon Tre...
NOAA Recommends Funding 46 Fish Passage Projects
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NOAA Recommends Funding 46 Fish Passage Projects

NOAA Fisheries has recommended nearly $240 million to fund 46 fish passage projects this year, plus an additional $38 million for addition fish passage projects in future years. The funds are to come through the Biden-Harris administration’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act, NOAA announced May 22. The project list includes over $158 million for 27 projects selected through the Restoring Fish Passage through Barrier Removal funds. The goal is to restore access to healthy habitat for migratory fish nationwide through efforts including on-the-ground fish passage restoration. Funds are currently being processed and the regional federal fishery councils are expected to receive initial funds this summer, with the remainder coming in fiscal 2025, NOAA Fisheri...
Record Low Fish Stocks Subject to Overfishing
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Record Low Fish Stocks Subject to Overfishing

A record low number of fish stocks were subject to overfishing in 2023, according to the annual Status of Stocks report that assesses the 506 stocks and stock complexes managed by NOAA Fisheries, which was released May 2. U.S. fisheries data confirmed that 94% of stocks in 2023 were not subject to overfishing and 82% were not overfished, a 1% improvement over 2022 data of 93% and 81% respectively. Ongoing positive trends continued with the number of stocks on the overfishing list decreasing by three stocks, reaching an all-time low of 21 stocks, and the number of stocks on the overfished list decreasing by one stock, to 47. Since 2000, NOAA Fisheries has rebuilt 50 stocks. NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad said that by ending overfishing and rebuilding stocks, the agency is s...
NOAA Fisheries Issues Final Rule on Cook Inlet EEZ
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NOAA Fisheries Issues Final Rule on Cook Inlet EEZ

NOAA Fisheries on April 29 announced publication of the final rule implementing federal management of commercial salmon fishing in the Cook Inlet Exclusive Economic Zone Area. Under federal management, which goes into effect 30 days after publication, commercial fishing vessels must obtain a federal permit, maintain a fishing logbook, have a vessel monitoring system (VMS) installed on their vessels, and comply with all other federal regulations laid out in the final rule. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) uses VMS in most federally managed fisheries in Alaska. NOAA Alaska spokeswoman Julie Fair said that the VMS requirement will be new for many Cook Inlet drift gillnet vessels that choose to fish in the EEZ fishery. “NMFS uses VMS to provide vessel location to make sure...
Salmon Fishery Disasters Declared by Commerce Secretary
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Salmon Fishery Disasters Declared by Commerce Secretary

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo on April 19 announced the determination of two 2021 and 2022 salmon fishery disasters in Alaska and one in Puget Sound. They include: the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe’s 2021 Puget Sound fall chum and coho salmon fisheries, the 2022 Kuskokwim River salmon fishery and the 2021 and 2022 Upper Cook Inlet East Side setnet salmon fishery. The determination came in response to requests from the late Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe Chairman Jeromy Sullivan and Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy. Raimondo’s office evaluates fishery resource disaster requests based primarily on data submitted by the requesting official. Each request must meet specific requirements under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. For example, there must be ec...
Dutch Harbor Holds Top Commercial Fisheries Landings Honors
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Dutch Harbor Holds Top Commercial Fisheries Landings Honors

The latest data compiled by the federal fisheries officials show in that in 2022 the Port of Dutch Harbor in Unalaska, Alaska ranked again as first in the nation for seafood landings, while the Port of New Bedford, Mass. maintains its status as first in value of deliveries. The annual “Fisheries Economics of the United States Report,” released by NOAA Fisheries April 4, shows among the nation’s 20 top ports that 613.5 million pounds of seafood, with a value of $159.9 million dollars were delivered to the Port of Dutch Harbor in 2022. The value of 88.4 million pounds of seafood delivered at the Port of New Bedford came to $443.2 million. Eight other Alaska ports, plus two from Oregon, one from Washington state and one from California also made the list of top 20 ports in the count...
Emergency Action on Bering Sea Chinook Salmon Bycatch Denied
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Emergency Action on Bering Sea Chinook Salmon Bycatch Denied

NOAA Fisheries has denied a request to institute a zero cap on Chinook salmon bycatch in the Bering Sea, to ensure no bycatch of Chinook salmon in the Bering Sea pollock fishery, saying the petition did not meet criteria necessary for emergency action. The decision, announced by NOAA Fisheries on April 18, was in response to a petition submitted Jan. 17 by five Native Alaska tribal entities, asking Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to close the Bering Sea pollock fishery, which opened on Jan. 20. The petition was signed by the Association of Village Council Presidents, Kuskokwim River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, Tanana Chiefs Conference, Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association and Yukon River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission. The petitioners also asked the Commerce Department ...