Notification of Receipt of a Petition for Rulemaking to Implement the Provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act for Swordfish Imports, 75988-75989 [E8-29653]

Download as PDF 75988 Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 241 / Monday, December 15, 2008 / Proposed Rules and Safety Risks—This proposed action is not subject to EO 13045 because it is not economically significant and is not based on health or safety risks; 8. Executive Order 13211: Actions that Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use—This action is not subject to EO 13211 because it is not a significant regulatory action as defined in EO 12866; 9. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act—This provision directs EPA to use voluntary consensus standards in its regulatory activities unless to do so would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impracticable. Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies. EPA approves state programs so long as the State programs meet the criteria delineated in 40 CFR part 258. It would be inconsistent with applicable law for EPA, in its review of a state program, to require the use of any particular voluntary consensus standard in place of another standard that meets 40 CFR part 258 requirements. Thus, the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act does not apply to this action; 10. Congressional Review Act—EPA will submit a report containing this action and other information required by the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.) to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication in the Federal Register. List of Subjects 40 CFR Part 239 Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedure, Intergovernmental relations, Waste treatment and disposal. 40 CFR Part 258 dwashington3 on PROD1PC60 with PROPOSALS Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Waste treatment disposal, Water pollution control. Authority: This action is issued under the authority of section 2002, 4005 and 4010(c) of the Solid Waste Disposal Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 6912, 6945 and 6949(a). Dated: December 3, 2008. John B. Askew, Regional Administrator, Region 7. [FR Doc. E8–29642 Filed 12–12–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P VerDate Aug<31>2005 14:47 Dec 12, 2008 Jkt 217001 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 216 RIN 0648–AX36 Notification of Receipt of a Petition for Rulemaking to Implement the Provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act for Swordfish Imports AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce ACTION: Receipt of petition for rulemaking; request for information and comments. SUMMARY: NMFS announces receipt of a petition for rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act. Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network, nongovernmental organizations, have petitioned the U.S. Department of Commerce and other relevant Departments to initiate rulemaking to ban importation of commercial fish or products from fish that have been caught with commercial fishing technology that results in incidental mortality or serious injury of marine mammals in excess of United States standards. DATES: Comments must be received by January 29, 2009. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http:// www.regulations.gov. • Mail: Director, Office of International Affairs, Attn: Swordfish Petition, NMFS, F/IA, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 • Fax: (301) 713–2313 All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to http://www.regulations.gov without change. All Personal Identifying Information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter N/A in the required fields, if you wish to remain anonymous). Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe portable document file (pdf) formats only. PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 The complete text of Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network’s petition is available via the internet at the following web address: http:// www.nmfs.noaa.gov/ia/. In addition copies of this petition may be obtained by contacting NMFS at the above address. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lekelia Jenkins at 301–713–9090 x131. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background Section 101(a)(2) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), 16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(2),states that ‘‘The Secretary of the Treasury shall ban the importation of commercial fish or products from fish which have been caught with commercial fishing technology which results in the incidental kill or incidental serious injury of ocean mammals in excess of United States standards. For purposes of applying the preceding sentence, the Secretary [of Commerce] (A) shall insist on reasonable proof from the government of any nation from which fish or fish products will be exported to the United States of the effects on ocean mammals of the commercial fishing technology in use for such fish or fish products exported from such nation to the United States.’’ Some information pertinent to the effects of commercial fishing technology on marine mammals can be found in a report entitled ‘‘Worldwide Bycatch of Cetaceans: An evaluation of the most significant threats to cetaceans, the affected species and the geographic areas of high risk, and the recommended actions from various independent institutions.’’ This report, published by NMFS Office of International Affairs and prepared by outside experts, was commissioned by NMFS to identify threats to cetaceans, ongoing efforts to address these threats, and prioritize areas where the agency could focus future initiatives to improve international cetacean conservation. The complete text of this report is available via the internet at the following web address: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/ia/ docs/OPR36.pdf. Information in the Petition NMFS received the petition on March 5, 2008. The petition asserts that the Secretaries of Commerce and other relevant federal Departments are required to obtain reasonable proof from countries exporting swordfish and swordfish products to the U.S. regarding the effects of their commercial swordfish fishing technology on marine E:\FR\FM\15DEP1.SGM 15DEP1 Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 241 / Monday, December 15, 2008 / Proposed Rules dwashington3 on PROD1PC60 with PROPOSALS mammals. The petition requests that the Secretary of the Treasury ban imports of swordfish from any and all countries that have not satisfied the MMPA section 101(a)(2) requirement. As support for the need for this action, the petition alleges potential deficiencies in the fishing, exporting, and other related practices of some nations that export swordfish to the United States without articulating any specific ‘‘U.S. VerDate Aug<31>2005 14:47 Dec 12, 2008 Jkt 217001 standards’’ that have been exceeded by other nations. The petition fails to define ‘‘United States standards;’’ rather, it describes marine mammal protection programs that the United States has implemented. NMFS will consider public comments received in determining whether to proceed with the request by Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network. In addition to general comments on the petition, PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 75989 NMFS specifically requests comments on how to define ‘‘United States standards’’ as referenced in MMPA section 101(a)(2). Dated: December 10, 2008. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. E8–29653 Filed 12–12–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–S E:\FR\FM\15DEP1.SGM 15DEP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 241 (Monday, December 15, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 75988-75989]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-29653]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 216

RIN 0648-AX36


Notification of Receipt of a Petition for Rulemaking to Implement 
the Provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act for Swordfish 
Imports

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

ACTION: Receipt of petition for rulemaking; request for information and 
comments.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces receipt of a petition for rulemaking under the 
Administrative Procedure Act. Center for Biological Diversity and 
Turtle Island Restoration Network, non-governmental organizations, have 
petitioned the U.S. Department of Commerce and other relevant 
Departments to initiate rulemaking to ban importation of commercial 
fish or products from fish that have been caught with commercial 
fishing technology that results in incidental mortality or serious 
injury of marine mammals in excess of United States standards.

DATES: Comments must be received by January 29, 2009.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://
www.regulations.gov.
     Mail: Director, Office of International Affairs, Attn: 
Swordfish Petition, NMFS, F/IA, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, 
MD 20910
     Fax: (301) 713-2313
    All comments received are a part of the public record and will 
generally be posted to http://www.regulations.gov without change. All 
Personal Identifying Information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily 
submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit 
Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected 
information.
    NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter N/A in the required 
fields, if you wish to remain anonymous). Attachments to electronic 
comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or 
Adobe portable document file (pdf) formats only.
    The complete text of Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle 
Island Restoration Network's petition is available via the internet at 
the following web address: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/ia/. In addition 
copies of this petition may be obtained by contacting NMFS at the above 
address.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lekelia Jenkins at 301-713-9090 x131.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Section 101(a)(2) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), 16 
U.S.C. 1371(a)(2),states that ``The Secretary of the Treasury shall ban 
the importation of commercial fish or products from fish which have 
been caught with commercial fishing technology which results in the 
incidental kill or incidental serious injury of ocean mammals in excess 
of United States standards. For purposes of applying the preceding 
sentence, the Secretary [of Commerce] (A) shall insist on reasonable 
proof from the government of any nation from which fish or fish 
products will be exported to the United States of the effects on ocean 
mammals of the commercial fishing technology in use for such fish or 
fish products exported from such nation to the United States.''
    Some information pertinent to the effects of commercial fishing 
technology on marine mammals can be found in a report entitled 
``Worldwide Bycatch of Cetaceans: An evaluation of the most significant 
threats to cetaceans, the affected species and the geographic areas of 
high risk, and the recommended actions from various independent 
institutions.'' This report, published by NMFS Office of International 
Affairs and prepared by outside experts, was commissioned by NMFS to 
identify threats to cetaceans, ongoing efforts to address these 
threats, and prioritize areas where the agency could focus future 
initiatives to improve international cetacean conservation. The 
complete text of this report is available via the internet at the 
following web address: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/ia/docs/OPR36.pdf.

Information in the Petition

    NMFS received the petition on March 5, 2008. The petition asserts 
that the Secretaries of Commerce and other relevant federal Departments 
are required to obtain reasonable proof from countries exporting 
swordfish and swordfish products to the U.S. regarding the effects of 
their commercial swordfish fishing technology on marine

[[Page 75989]]

mammals. The petition requests that the Secretary of the Treasury ban 
imports of swordfish from any and all countries that have not satisfied 
the MMPA section 101(a)(2) requirement. As support for the need for 
this action, the petition alleges potential deficiencies in the 
fishing, exporting, and other related practices of some nations that 
export swordfish to the United States without articulating any specific 
``U.S. standards'' that have been exceeded by other nations.
    The petition fails to define ``United States standards;'' rather, 
it describes marine mammal protection programs that the United States 
has implemented. NMFS will consider public comments received in 
determining whether to proceed with the request by Center for 
Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network. In addition 
to general comments on the petition, NMFS specifically requests 
comments on how to define ``United States standards'' as referenced in 
MMPA section 101(a)(2).

    Dated: December 10, 2008.
Samuel D. Rauch III,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. E8-29653 Filed 12-12-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-S