Federal Register Notices

post

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.
Read More ª

post

FR notice – List of Fisheries for 2018 (Oct. 12, 2017) (Proposed Rule)

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

ACTION: Proposed rule.

SUMMARY: The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) publishes its proposed List of Fisheries (LOF) for 2018, as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The LOF for 2018 reflects new information on interactions between commercial fisheries and marine mammals. NMFS must classify each commercial fishery on the LOF into one of three categories under the MMPA based upon the level of mortality and serious injury of marine mammals that occurs incidental to each fishery. The classification of a fishery on the LOF determines whether participants in that fishery are subject to certain provisions of the MMPA, such as registration, observer coverage, and take reduction plan (TRP) requirements.
Read More ª

post

FR Notice – Revised 2017 Fishing Restrictions for Tropical Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean (Sept. 29, 2017)

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

ACTION: Final rule.

SUMMARY: NMFS is issuing regulations under the Tuna Conventions Act to implement amendments to Resolution C–17–01 (Conservation of Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean During 2017) per Resolution C–17–02 (Conservation Measures for Tropical Tunas in the Eastern Pacific Ocean During 2018–2020 and Amendment to Resolution C–17–01) which was adopted by the Inter- American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC or Commission) in July 2017. Applicable to the purse seine fleet fishing for tropical tunas (bigeye, yellowfin, and skipjack tuna) in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) and only for the remainder of the 2017 calendar year, the amendments to Resolution C–17–01 remove the total allowable catches (TACs) for bigeye tuna (BET) and yellowfin tuna (YFT), and replace them with an extension in the purse seine closure period from 62 days to 72 days. Additionally, to ensure that the time/ area closure, known as the corralito, does not overlap with the extended closure periods, the amendments also shift the dates for the corralito closure. This rule is necessary for the conservation of tropical tuna stocks in the EPO and for the United States to satisfy its obligations as a member of the IATTC.
Read More ª

post

FR Notice – Permanent Advisory Committee To Advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (Sept. 12, 2017)

SUMMARY: NMFS announces a meeting of the Permanent Advisory Committee (PAC) to advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) on October 24–October 25, 2017. Meeting topics are provided under the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.
Read More ª

post

FR Notice – 2017 U.S. Territorial Longline Bigeye Tuna Catch Limits (Aug. 31, 2017)

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.
ACTION: Proposed specifications; request for comments.

SUMMARY: NMFS proposes a 2017 limit of 2,000 metric tons (mt) of longline- caught bigeye tuna for each U.S. Pacific territory (American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands). NMFS would allow each territory to allocate up to 1,000 mt each year to U.S. longline fishing vessels in a specified fishing agreement that meets established criteria. As an accountability measure, NMFS would monitor, attribute, and restrict (if necessary) catches of longline-caught bigeye tuna, including catches made under a specified fishing agreement. The proposed catch limits and accountability measures would support the long-term sustainability of fishery resources of the U.S. Pacific Islands.
Read More ª

post

FR Notice – 2017 Commercial Pacific Bluefin Tuna Fishery Closure in the Eastern Pacific Ocean (Aug. 28, 2017)

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

SUMMARY: NMFS is temporarily closing the U.S. commercial fishery for Pacific bluefin tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) through December 31, 2017, because the 2017 catch limit of 425 metric tons has been exceeded. This action is necessary to prevent the fishery from further exceeding the applicable catch limit established by the Inter-American
Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) in Resolution C–16–08 (Measures for the Conservation and Management of Pacific Bluefin Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean).

DATES: The rule is effective 12 a.m. local time August 28, 2017, through 11:59 p.m. local time December 31, 2017.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Celia Barroso, NMFS West Coast Region, 562–432–1850.

Click here for complete FR Notice

post

FR Notice – Marine Conservation Plan for Guam (Aug. 16, 2017)

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

ACTION: Notice of agency decision.

SUMMARY: NMFS announces approval of a Marine Conservation Plan (MCP) for Guam.

DATES: This agency decision is valid from August 4, 2017, through August 3, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the MCP, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2017–0075, from the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal, http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2017-0075, or from the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council), 1164 Bishop St., Suite 1400, Honolulu, HI 96813, tel 808–522–8220, www.wpcouncil.org.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Melanie Brown, Sustainable Fisheries, NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 808–725–5171.

Click here for complete FR Notice

post

FR Notice – 2017 Bigeye Tuna Longline Fishery Closure (Aug. 14, 2017)

ACTION: Temporary rule; fishery closure.

SUMMARY: NMFS is closing the U.S. pelagic longline fishery for bigeye tuna in the western and  central Pacific Ocean because the fishery has reached the 2017 catch limit. This action is necessary to ensure compliance with NMFS regulations that  implement decisions of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC).

DATES: Effective 12:01 a.m. local time September 1, 2017, 2017, through December 31, 2017.

ADDRESSES: NMFS prepared a plain language guide and frequently asked questions that explain how to comply with this rule; both are available at https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=NOAA-NMFS-2017-0092.

Click here for complete FR Notice

post

FR notice – Marine Conservation Plan for Pacific Insular Areas Other Than American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands (Aug. 11, 2017)

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

ACTION: Notice of agency decision.

SUMMARY: NMFS announces approval of a Marine Conservation Plan (MCP) for Pacific Insular Areas other than American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands.
Read More ª

post

FR Notice – Marine Conservation Plan for the Pacific Insular Area for the Northern Mariana Islands; Western Pacific Sustainable Fisheries Fund (Aug. 9, 2017)

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

ACTION: Notice of agency decision.

SUMMARY: NMFS announces approval of a Marine Conservation Plan (MCP) for the Northern Mariana
Islands.

DATES: This agency decision is valid from August 4, 2017, through August 3, 2020.

Click here for complete FR Notice