Contractor Solicitation: Protected Species Program Technical Assistant to Update the SAFE Report Protected Species Modules and Improve Protected Species Information Base for Fisheries Management

The Council is seeking a contractor to provide technical assistance to the Council’s Protected Species Program in updating the protected species module of the Fishery Ecosystem Plan Stock Assessment and Fisheries Evaluation (SAFE) Reports. The contractor may also assist with other projects to improve the protected species information base for fisheries management. The contract will run for a five-month period starting in January.

Applications should include 1) a cover letter; 2) resume or CV; and 3) at least one technical writing sample, submitted to the contact information below by 5pm (Hawaii) on Tuesday, December 12, 2017:

Asuka Ishizaki
Protected Species Coordinator
Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
1164 Bishop Street, Suite 1400
Honolulu, HI 96813

For more information on the scope of work, please see the full solicitation.



Press Release: Scientists to Advise on NWHI Monument Fisheries, Bigeye Tuna Catch Limits

HONOLULU (29 Sept. 2016) President Obama’s proclamation expanding the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) to include 532,578 square miles of ocean prohibits commercial fishing but allows non-commercial fishing including native Hawaiian subsistence fishing. In a letter dated Sept. 23, 2016, to the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Pacific Islands Regional Administrator Michael Tosatto said that he looked “forward to the Council’s recommendations for amending the Hawai‘i and Pelagic fishery ecosystem plans to establish appropriate fishing requirements under the Magnuson-Stevens [Fishery Conservation and Management] Act, including the prohibition on commercial fishing and the regulation of non-commercial fishing.”
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Press Release – Fishery Council Asks for Transparent Analysis of Proposed Marine Monument Expansion

HONOLULU (5 Aug. 2016) The Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council on Wednesday agreed to a resolution that asks the U.S. government to address a suite of concerns before acting on the proposed expansion on the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument (MNM) in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Council members Suzanne Case, Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources chair, and Julie Leialoha, Conservation Council for Hawaii president, voted against the proposal. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Pacific Islands Regional Administrator Michael Tosatto abstained.
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Letters against the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument (PMNM) expansion

Letters against the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument (PMNM) expansion


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Fishery Data Collection and Research Committee

Date: June 4, 2016
Location: Fiesta Hotel and Spa, Garapan, CNMI
FR Notice
Fishery Data Collection and Research Committee Draft Meeting Report


From the Boat to the Table (New video)

The Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council celebratesPoke pic 40 years of successful fishery management with Boat to Plate. As this short video illustrates, it’s not about fishing. It’s about the food upon which we all depend. 13 minutes. Produced for the WPRFMC by Dean Sensui and Stacey Hayashi. (c) 2016, WPRFMC. ISBN 978-1-937863-92-0

Click here to view video on youtube



Council Sends Letter to President Obama about NWHI monument expansion request

On April 8, 2016, the Western Pacific Regional Fishery  Management Council wrote to President Obama regarding a January 2016 request to expand the expand the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument (PMNM) around the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI). Click here to see a pdf of the letter.


Why U.S. Fisheries Are A Global Model Of Sustainability

Why U.S. Fisheries Are A Global Model Of Sustainability (Click here for pdf)

Outcomes from management and conservation legislation in place now for four decades include benefits throughout the Hawaiian Islands and the Pacific Ocean more broadly. · By Michael Tosatto

In the 40 years since passage of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, we’ve been on a journey that has made U.S. fisheries management a global model of sustainability.  In the Pacific Islands, we see the wisdom of this act on our dinner plates and in our local fisheries every day.

In our region, much credit goes to the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council, which is  responsible for recommending conservation and management measures to NOAA Fisheries in the Pacific Islands. Comprised of commercial and non-commercial fishermen, and environmental, academic and government interests, the council has a proud track record of achieving its goal of sustainable fisheries.

Within the Councils’ expansive jurisdiction – extending from the Hawaiian Islands through the Western Pacific including American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Island and Guam – only a small number of stocks are subject to overfishing or overfished.
Federal law protecting fisheries has enabled 39 U.S. fish stocks to be rebuilt over the past 16 years.

Credit: NOAA

Working closely with the Western Pacific Council and state, territory, and commonwealth  governments, NOAA has provided development assistance, marine education and training opportunities  to ensure sustainable marine resource management now and into the future.

One popular and distinct initiative gives students from elementary through high school the chance to learn about marine science through a multi-disciplinary curriculum. This effort bolster interest in marine-related careers, advances environmental stewardship and generates understanding about why an ecosystem approach to management is so vital.

Fisheries’ successes stretch way beyond the Pacific Islands. Since 2000, 39 U.S. fish stocks have been rebuilt. In 2014, U.S. commercial fishermen landed 9.5 billion pounds of fish, valued at $5.4 billion. And just recently, an evaluation of fisheries management under Magnuson-Stevens showed that the United States meets or exceeds standards of sustainability set by the
international community. This means that consumers can be confident about the sustainability of fish and shellfish harvested in the Pacific Islands and across the country.

Since counting fish can be harder than you might think, NOAA scientists use satellite- based and other technologies to ensure that management of the Pacific Islands’ unique and highly migratory species rests on the best available information.

Since counting fish can be harder than you might think, NOAA scientists use satellite-based and other technologies to ensure that management of the Pacific Islands’ unique and highly migratory species rests on the best available information. Satellite data, for example, strengthen  understanding of the food web that supports ecologically and commercially important species such as yellowfin tuna, swordfish, North Pacific albacore, and neon flying squid. Numerous scientific disciplines are engaged in monitoring and assessing the status of fish stocks and the viability of regional fishery management plans.

Under a science-based framework, the U.S. is able to bring national influence to international marine resource management bodies such as the Western & Central Pacific Fisheries Commission and the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission, leading by example to ensure that shared marine resources are responsibly managed. The councils and international organizations are putting NOAA science to work by reducing bycatch and managing fisheries using a holistic ecosystem-based approach.

There are challenges ahead, including climate change, bycatch and habitat destruction. But the commitment to science-based management and technological innovation that permits our Western Pacific Council and the seven other U.S. regional fishery councils to assess fish stocks enable us to address such challenges collaboratively and creatively.

Whether you enjoy casting a line from a local pier, or eating seafood at your favorite restaurant, sustainable fisheries are everyone’s business. Working with the regional councils, fishing industries and coastal communities, Magnuson-Stevens offers a proven roadmap for successful fisheries management. It’s definitely benefited the Pacific Islands region. I look forward to another 40 years!

For more details including fish stocks in the Pacific Islands and updates on exciting projects, please visit

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About the Author

Michael Tosatto
Michael Tosatto is Pacific Islands regional administrator for National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration Fisheries.


The Council sends letter to Mary Junck congratulating AP’s Pulitzer prize for uncovering slavery in the seafood industry

The Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council congratulations and appreciates the excellent work conducted by the Associated Press journalists in uncovering the slave trade for the seafood industry in South East Asia, most
notably in Thailand and Indonesia.  Click here to read letter.