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FR Notice – 2017 U.S. Territorial Longline Bigeye Tuna Catch Limits (Oct. 13, 2017)

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Final specifications.

SUMMARY: In this final rule, NMFS specifies a 2017 limit of 2,000 mt of longline-caught bigeye tuna for each U.S. participating territory (American Samoa, Guam, and the NorthernMariana Islands). NMFS will allow each territory to allocate up to 1,000 mt each year to U.S. longline fishing vessels in a valid specified fishing agreement. As an accountability measure, NMFS will monitor, attribute, and restrict (if necessary), catches of longline-caught bigeye tuna, including catches made under a specified fishing agreement. These catch limits and accountability measures support the long-term sustainability of fishery resources of the U.S. Pacific Islands and fisheries development in the U.S. territories.

DATES: The final specifications are effective October 10, 2017, through December 31, 2017. The deadline to submit a specified fishing agreement pursuant to 50 CFR 665.819(b)(3) for review is December 11, 2017.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the Fishery Ecosystem Plan for Pelagic Fisheries of the Western Pacific (Pelagic FEP) are available from the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council), 1164 Bishop St., Suite 1400, Honolulu, HI 96813, tel 808–522–8220, fax 808–522–8226, or www.wpcouncil.org.

NMFS prepared environmental analyses that describe the potential impacts on the human environment that would result from the action. Copies of those analyses, identified by NOAA– NMFS–2017–0004, are available from www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2017-0004, or from Michael D. Tosatto, Regional Administrator, NMFS Pacific Islands Region (PIR), 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jarad Makaiau, NMFS PIRO Sustainable Fisheries, 808–725–5176.

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