Notice of Intent to Prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement on Implementing Recovery Actions for Hawaiian Monk Seals, 60721-60723 [2010-24738]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 190 / Friday, October 1, 2010 / Notices Dated: September 24, 2010. Susan H. Kuhbach, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XZ21 [FR Doc. 2010–24731 Filed 9–30–10; 8:45 am] Notice of Intent to Prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement on Implementing Recovery Actions for Hawaiian Monk Seals BILLING CODE 3510–DS–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Aerospace Supplier Development Mission to China; Recruitment Reopened for Additional Applications International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. AGENCY: ACTION: Timeframe for Recruitment and Applications Mission recruitment will be conducted in an open and public manner, including publication in the Federal Register, posting on the Commerce Department trade mission calendar (https://www.ita.doc.gov/ doctm/tmcal.html) and other Internet web sites, press releases to general and trade media, direct mail, notices by industry trade associations and other multiplier groups, and publicity at industry meetings, symposia, conferences, and trade shows. The recruitment has reopened and the deadline for additional applications is extended to September 29, 2010. The U.S. Department of Commerce will review all additional applications after the deadline. We will inform applicants of selection decisions as soon as possible after the deadline. Applications received after the deadline will be considered only if space and scheduling constraints permit. Companies who have already applied do not need to reapply. emcdonald on DSK2BSOYB1PROD with NOTICES U.S. Commercial Service Domestic Contact Lisa Huot, 202–482–2796, Lisa.Huot@trade.gov. Lisa Huot, Trade Promotion Programs, International Trade Specialist, U.S. Commercial Service. [FR Doc. 2010–24637 Filed 9–30–10; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:34 Sep 30, 2010 Jkt 220001 The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announces its intent to prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) to analyze the environmental impacts of implementing specific management actions and administering the associated research and enhancement program for Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) in the Northwestern and Main Hawaiian Islands. Publication of this notice begins the official public scoping process that will help identify alternatives and determine the scope of environmental issues to be considered in the PEIS. ADDRESSES: Written statements and questions regarding the public scoping process must be postmarked by November 15, 2010. To be included on a mailing list and receive newsletters and copies of the Draft and Final PEIS, please send mailing address and/or email address to Jeff Walters, Hawaiian Monk Seal Recovery Coordinator, Protected Resources Division, NOAA NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814. Comments on this notice and the scoping process for this action may be submitted by: • Mail: 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814. • Scoping Meetings: Oral and written comments will be accepted during the upcoming scoping meetings. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION, SCOPING MEETINGS (below) for dates and locations of public scoping meetings for this issue. • Email: monkseal@noaa.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jeff Walters, NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814, or via the following email address: monkseal@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS is the Federal agency responsible for SUMMARY: Notice. Contacts National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Commerce. ACTION: Notice of Intent to prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement; announcement of public scoping period; request for comments. AGENCY: International Trade Administration PO 00000 Frm 00011 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 60721 management of Hawaiian monk seals, under the Endangered Species Act (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) and the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.). NMFS funds and conducts research and enhancement activities on Hawaiian monk seals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) and Main Hawaiian Islands (MHI). In 1976, NMFS listed Hawaiian monk seals as ‘‘endangered’’ under the ESA and ‘‘depleted’’ under the MMPA. As required under section 4 of the ESA, NMFS published a Recovery Plan for the species in 1983, which was revised in 2007. The funds administered by NMFS to implement recovery actions, including research and enhancement, have been designated by Congress and allocated within NMFS’ annual budgets for the purpose of promoting Hawaiian monk seal recovery. The intent of this PEIS is to evaluate, in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), the potential direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts on the human environment of the alternative approaches to implementing recovery actions, including research and enhancement activities, under the Hawaiian monk seal recovery program. Background The Hawaiian monk seals’ population has experienced a prolonged decline and currently only approximately 1,200 monk seals remain. Numerous threats to the survival of Hawaiian monk seals are identified in the Hawaiian monk seal Recovery Plan. In the NWHI, young seals are starving, pups are being killed by sharks, seals are getting entangled in marine debris, and sea level rise threatens terrestrial habitats. Low juvenile survival over the past two decades is the primary cause of the population’s decline. There is insufficient recruitment into the breeding population, and the population decline will likely continue without intervention. Enhancement activities, including but not limited to translocating seals from areas of lower to higher survival probability, are being considered to improve juvenile survival and the overall health of the population. The purpose of implementing recovery activities for Hawaiian monk seals is to promote the recovery of the species population to levels at which ESA protection is no longer needed. Research, enhancement, and management activities on Hawaiian monk seals considered in this PEIS are funded, undertaken, and permitted by NMFS, which are federal actions requiring NEPA compliance. The need for this action is rooted in fundamental E:\FR\FM\01OCN1.SGM 01OCN1 60722 Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 190 / Friday, October 1, 2010 / Notices emcdonald on DSK2BSOYB1PROD with NOTICES biological and ecological factors that are now limiting the population. As part of this action, NMFS is developing measures that will help identify factors limiting the population, minimize human-induced impacts and other factors affecting survival, promote recovery, prevent harm, and avoid jeopardy or continued disadvantage to the species. Research and monitoring will continue to play a key role in determining whether enhancement activities achieve their desired outcomes. NMFS administers funds that have been designated by Congress and allocated within NMFS’ annual budget for the purpose of implementing recovery actions on Hawaiian monk seals. Using these funds, NMFS implements various management, research, and enhancement activities for recovery of the species. This PEIS would satisfy the NEPA compliance requirements for funding and undertaking recovery actions for Hawaiian monk seals, including the subset of actions requiring MMPA and ESA permits. The purposes of the ESA, as described in section 2, are to provide a means whereby the ecosystems upon which threatened and endangered species may depend may be conserved, to provide a program for the conservation of such threatened and endangered species, and to take such steps as may be appropriate to achieve the purposes of the treaties and conventions set forth in section 2(a) of the ESA. Proposed Action and Possible Alternatives This notice initiates a public scoping period that will help determine the structure of each alternative considered in the PEIS. NMFS has identified the proposed action and several other alternatives, including the No Action Alternative. The final scope and structure of the alternatives will reflect the combined input from the public, research institutions, affected State and Federal agencies, and NMFS administrative and research offices. The number and structure of the alternatives that are analyzed in the PEIS will be determined at a later date. Themes to include in the range of potential alternatives are presented here to provide a framework for public comments: • No Action Alternative: Under this alternative, currently permitted research and enhancement activities on Hawaiian monk seals would continue until expiration of the permit in 2014 (NMFS ESA-MMPA Permit No. 10137– 04 issued to the NMFS Pacific Islands VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:34 Sep 30, 2010 Jkt 220001 Fisheries Science Center). Recovery Plan actions authorized by this permit would not be implemented beyond 2014. Currently, the existing research and enhancement activities include, but are not limited to: 1. Population assessment (e.g., counting, resighting, marking for identification, flipper tags); 2. Health and disease studies (e.g., tissue sampling, morphometric measurements); 3. Foraging studies (e.g., telemetry, scat collection); 4. De-worming research (e.g., fecal samples, testing anti-parasite treatments); 5. Translocation of weaned pups within the NWHI to improve juvenile survival; 6. Mitigation of fishery interactions (e.g., disentanglement, removal of fishing hooks); and 7. Mitigation of adult male aggression (e.g., removal and relocation of aggressive males). • Status Quo Alternative: The Status Quo Alternative would consist of the existing types and scope of management, research and enhancement activities (including those identified in the No Action Alternative). New permits would be issued to maintain the current levels of research and enhancement activities. Existing management activities include but are not limited to protecting seals that haul out on recreational beaches and creating effective outreach messages, brochures, signs and volunteer programs to minimize human disturbance and other adverse impacts. • Enhanced Implementation Alternative (Proposed Action): The Proposed Action would result in implementation and continuation of activities identified in the Status Quo, as well as additional activities to achieve more comprehensive Recovery Plan implementation. These additional activities would include, but are not limited to: 1. Vaccination studies (including potential vaccination); 2. Aversive conditioning (e.g., the development of tools to modify undesirable seal behavior including interactions with humans or domestic animals); 3. Archipelago-wide translocation to improve juvenile survival; and 4. De-worming. The PEIS will assess the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of implementing the alternative approaches for funding, undertaking, and permitting the management, research and enhancement activities on Hawaiian monk seals as well as other PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 components of the marine ecosystem and human environment. Anyone having relevant information they believe NMFS should consider in its analysis should provide a description of that information along with complete citations for supporting documents. Public Involvement Scoping is an early and open process for determining the scope of issues to be addressed in a PEIS and for identifying the significant issues related to the proposed action. A principal objective of the scoping and public involvement process is to identify a range of reasonable management alternatives that will delineate critical issues and provide a clear basis for distinguishing among those alternatives and selecting a preferred alternative. Through this notice, we are notifying the public that a NEPA analysis and decision—making process for this proposed action has been initiated so that interested or affected people may participate and contribute to the final decision. NMFS will ask for additional public comments once the Draft PEIS is prepared and available. For additional information about Hawaiian monk seals and the PEIS process, please visit our website at https://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/ eis/hawaiianmonkseal.htm. NMFS estimates the Draft PEIS will be available in late spring 2011. Scoping Meetings Public scoping meetings will be held on the following dates, times, and locations: 1. Wednesday, October 20, 2010, 5:30 — 8:30 p.m., Central Union Church, 1660 South Beretania Street, Honolulu, O‘ahu; 2. Thursday, October 21, 2010, 6 — 9 ˜ p.m., Mokupapapa Discovery Center, 308 Kamehameha Avenue, Suite 109, Hilo, Hawai‘i; 3. Monday, October 25, 2010, 6 — 9 p.m., NOAA Sanctuaries New Community Learning Center, 726 South ˜ ˜ Kıhei Road, Kıhei, Maui; 4. Tuesday, October 26, 2010, 6 — 9 p.m., Hale Mahaolu Home Pumehana, 290 Kolapa Place, Kaunakakai, Moloka‘i; and 5. Wednesday, October 27, 2010, 6 — 9 p.m., Wilcox Elementary School, 4319 ˜ Hardy Street, Lıhu‘e, Kaua‘i. Comments will be accepted at these meetings as well as during the scoping period, and can be submitted to NMFS by November 15, 2010 (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). We request that you include in your comments: (1) Your name, address, and affiliation (if any); and (2) Any background documents to E:\FR\FM\01OCN1.SGM 01OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 190 / Friday, October 1, 2010 / Notices support your comments as you think necessary. Special Accommodations These meetings are accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Rachel Sprague, (808) 944–2200 (phone) or (808) 973–2941 (fax), at least 5 days before the scheduled meeting date. Dated: September 22, 2010. Eric C. Schwaab, Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2010–24738 Filed 9–30–10; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–S DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A–201–838] Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From Mexico: Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value Import Administration, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of Commerce (‘‘the Department’’) has determined that imports of seamless refined copper pipe and tube (‘‘copper pipe and tube’’) from Mexico are being, or are likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value (‘‘LTFV’’), as provided in section 735 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (‘‘the Act’’). The estimated margins of sales at LTFV are listed in the ‘‘Continuation of Suspension of Liquidation’’ section of this notice. DATES: Effective Date: October 1, 2010. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Joy Zhang or George McMahon, AD/CVD Operations, Office 3, Import Administration, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482–1168 or (202) 482– 1167, respectively. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: AGENCY: emcdonald on DSK2BSOYB1PROD with NOTICES Background On May 12, 2010, the Department published in the Federal Register its preliminary determination on copper pipe and tube from Mexico. See Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from Mexico: Notice of Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination, 75 FR 26726 (May 12, VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:34 Sep 30, 2010 Jkt 220001 2010) (‘‘Preliminary Determination).1 We selected the following companies for individual examination: IUSA S.A. de C.V. (‘‘IUSA’’) and Nacional de Cobre, S.A. de C.V. (‘‘Nacobre’’). See Preliminary Determination, 75 FR at 26726. As provided in section 782(i) of the Act, we conducted sales and cost verifications of the questionnaire responses submitted by IUSA and Nacobre. We used standard verification procedures, including examination of relevant accounting and production records, as well as original source documents provided by IUSA and Nacobre.2 All verification reports are on file and available in the Central Records Unit (‘‘CRU’’), Room 7046, of the main Department of Commerce building. On July 23, 2010 and July 26, 2010, respectively, IUSA and Nacobre, submitted sales and cost databases with revisions that reflect the minor corrections presented during their respective verifications.3 IUSA, Nacobre, and the petitioners 4 filed their case briefs with the Department on August 4, 2010, and rebuttal briefs on August 10, 2010. At the petitioners’ request, we held a hearing on August 12, 2010. We used IUSA’s July 23, 2010, and Nacobre’s July 26, 2010, sales and cost databases to calculate IUSA’s and Nacobre’s antidumping duty margin. No parties have objected to the use of these databases. On September 13, 2010, the Department placed a memorandum on the record of this case regarding a recent 1 On May 28, 2010, the Department also published in the Federal Register, Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From Mexico: Correction to Notice of Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value 75 FR 29990 (May 28, 2010) and Postponement of Final Determination to correct the Scope section of the Preliminary Determination. 2 See Memorandum to the File titled ‘‘Verification of the Sales Response of IUSA S.A. de C.V. (‘‘IUSA’’) and its affiliates (‘‘IUSA’’) in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from Mexico, dated July 21, 2010’’ ‘‘Verification of the Cost Response of IUSA, S.A. de C.V. in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from Mexico, dated July 19, 2010’’ ‘‘Verification of the Sales Response of Nacobre, S.A. de C.V. and its affiliates (‘‘Nacobre’’) in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from Mexico,’’ dated July 21, 2010, and ‘‘Verification of the Cost Response of Nacobre, S.A. de C.V. and its affiliates (‘‘Nacobre’’) in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from Mexico,’’ dated July 22, 2010. 3 See IUSA’s July 23, 2010, and Nacobre’s July 26, 2010, submission of the sales and cost databases. 4 The petitioners in this investigation are Cerro Flow Products, Inc., KobeWieland Copper Products, LLC, Mueller Copper Tube Products, Inc., and Mueller Copper Tube Company, Inc. (collectively, ‘‘petitioners’’). PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 60723 ex parte meeting in which Francisco J. ´ Sanchez, Under Secretary for International Trade Administration met with Mr. Carlos Peralta, President and Director General of IUSA. The Department invited interested parties to comment on this memorandum by September 17, 2010; however, no comments were received. Period of Investigation The period of investigation (‘‘POI’’) is July 1, 2008, to June 30, 2009. This period corresponds to the four most recent fiscal quarters prior to the month of the filing of the petition. See 19 CFR 351.204(b)(1). Scope of Investigation For the purpose of this investigation, the products covered are all seamless circular refined copper pipes and tubes, including redraw hollows, greater than or equal to 6 inches (152.4 mm) in length and measuring less than 12.130 inches (308.102 mm) (actual) in outside diameter (‘‘OD’’), regardless of wall thickness, bore (e.g., smooth, enhanced with inner grooves or ridges), manufacturing process (e.g., hot finished, cold-drawn, annealed), outer surface (e.g., plain or enhanced with grooves, ridges, fins, or gills), end finish (e.g., plain end, swaged end, flared end, expanded end, crimped end, threaded), coating (e.g., plastic, paint), insulation, attachments (e.g., plain, capped, plugged, with compression or other fitting), or physical configuration (e.g., straight, coiled, bent, wound on spools). The scope of this investigation covers, but is not limited to, seamless refined copper pipe and tube produced or comparable to the American Society for Testing and Materials (‘‘ASTM’’) ASTM– B42, ASTM–B68, ASTM–B75, ASTM– B88, ASTM–B88M, ASTM–B188, ASTM–B251, ASTM–B251M, ASTM– B280, ASTM–B302, ASTM–B306, ASTM–359, ASTM–B743, ASTM–B819, and ASTM–B903 specifications and meeting the physical parameters described therein. Also included within the scope of this investigation are all sets of covered products, including ‘‘line sets’’ of seamless refined copper tubes (with or without fittings or insulation) suitable for connecting an outdoor air conditioner or heat pump to an indoor evaporator unit. The phrase ‘‘all sets of covered products’’ denotes any combination of items put up for sale that is comprised of merchandise subject to the scope. ‘‘Refined copper’’ is defined as: (1) Metal containing at least 99.85 percent by weight of copper; or (2) metal containing at least 97.5 percent by weight of copper, provided that the E:\FR\FM\01OCN1.SGM 01OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 190 (Friday, October 1, 2010)]
[Notices]
[Pages 60721-60723]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-24738]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XZ21


Notice of Intent to Prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact 
Statement on Implementing Recovery Actions for Hawaiian Monk Seals

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

ACTION: Notice of Intent to prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact 
Statement; announcement of public scoping period; request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announces its 
intent to prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) 
to analyze the environmental impacts of implementing specific 
management actions and administering the associated research and 
enhancement program for Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) in 
the Northwestern and Main Hawaiian Islands. Publication of this notice 
begins the official public scoping process that will help identify 
alternatives and determine the scope of environmental issues to be 
considered in the PEIS.

ADDRESSES: Written statements and questions regarding the public 
scoping process must be postmarked by November 15, 2010. To be included 
on a mailing list and receive newsletters and copies of the Draft and 
Final PEIS, please send mailing address and/or email address to Jeff 
Walters, Hawaiian Monk Seal Recovery Coordinator, Protected Resources 
Division, NOAA NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1601 Kapiolani 
Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814. Comments on this notice and the 
scoping process for this action may be submitted by:
     Mail: 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 
96814.
     Scoping Meetings: Oral and written comments will be 
accepted during the upcoming scoping meetings. See SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION, SCOPING MEETINGS (below) for dates and locations of public 
scoping meetings for this issue.
     Email: monkseal@noaa.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jeff Walters, NMFS Pacific Islands 
Regional Office, 1601 Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814, 
or via the following email address: monkseal@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS is the Federal agency responsible for 
management of Hawaiian monk seals, under the Endangered Species Act 
(ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) and the Marine Mammal Protection Act 
(MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.). NMFS funds and conducts research and 
enhancement activities on Hawaiian monk seals in the Northwestern 
Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) and Main Hawaiian Islands (MHI). In 1976, NMFS 
listed Hawaiian monk seals as ``endangered'' under the ESA and 
``depleted'' under the MMPA. As required under section 4 of the ESA, 
NMFS published a Recovery Plan for the species in 1983, which was 
revised in 2007. The funds administered by NMFS to implement recovery 
actions, including research and enhancement, have been designated by 
Congress and allocated within NMFS' annual budgets for the purpose of 
promoting Hawaiian monk seal recovery. The intent of this PEIS is to 
evaluate, in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act 
(NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), the potential direct, indirect, and 
cumulative impacts on the human environment of the alternative 
approaches to implementing recovery actions, including research and 
enhancement activities, under the Hawaiian monk seal recovery program.

Background

    The Hawaiian monk seals' population has experienced a prolonged 
decline and currently only approximately 1,200 monk seals remain. 
Numerous threats to the survival of Hawaiian monk seals are identified 
in the Hawaiian monk seal Recovery Plan. In the NWHI, young seals are 
starving, pups are being killed by sharks, seals are getting entangled 
in marine debris, and sea level rise threatens terrestrial habitats. 
Low juvenile survival over the past two decades is the primary cause of 
the population's decline. There is insufficient recruitment into the 
breeding population, and the population decline will likely continue 
without intervention. Enhancement activities, including but not limited 
to translocating seals from areas of lower to higher survival 
probability, are being considered to improve juvenile survival and the 
overall health of the population.
    The purpose of implementing recovery activities for Hawaiian monk 
seals is to promote the recovery of the species population to levels at 
which ESA protection is no longer needed. Research, enhancement, and 
management activities on Hawaiian monk seals considered in this PEIS 
are funded, undertaken, and permitted by NMFS, which are federal 
actions requiring NEPA compliance. The need for this action is rooted 
in fundamental

[[Page 60722]]

biological and ecological factors that are now limiting the population. 
As part of this action, NMFS is developing measures that will help 
identify factors limiting the population, minimize human-induced 
impacts and other factors affecting survival, promote recovery, prevent 
harm, and avoid jeopardy or continued disadvantage to the species. 
Research and monitoring will continue to play a key role in determining 
whether enhancement activities achieve their desired outcomes.
    NMFS administers funds that have been designated by Congress and 
allocated within NMFS' annual budget for the purpose of implementing 
recovery actions on Hawaiian monk seals. Using these funds, NMFS 
implements various management, research, and enhancement activities for 
recovery of the species. This PEIS would satisfy the NEPA compliance 
requirements for funding and undertaking recovery actions for Hawaiian 
monk seals, including the subset of actions requiring MMPA and ESA 
permits.
    The purposes of the ESA, as described in section 2, are to provide 
a means whereby the ecosystems upon which threatened and endangered 
species may depend may be conserved, to provide a program for the 
conservation of such threatened and endangered species, and to take 
such steps as may be appropriate to achieve the purposes of the 
treaties and conventions set forth in section 2(a) of the ESA.

Proposed Action and Possible Alternatives

    This notice initiates a public scoping period that will help 
determine the structure of each alternative considered in the PEIS. 
NMFS has identified the proposed action and several other alternatives, 
including the No Action Alternative. The final scope and structure of 
the alternatives will reflect the combined input from the public, 
research institutions, affected State and Federal agencies, and NMFS 
administrative and research offices. The number and structure of the 
alternatives that are analyzed in the PEIS will be determined at a 
later date. Themes to include in the range of potential alternatives 
are presented here to provide a framework for public comments:
     No Action Alternative: Under this alternative, currently 
permitted research and enhancement activities on Hawaiian monk seals 
would continue until expiration of the permit in 2014 (NMFS ESA-MMPA 
Permit No. 10137-04 issued to the NMFS Pacific Islands Fisheries 
Science Center). Recovery Plan actions authorized by this permit would 
not be implemented beyond 2014. Currently, the existing research and 
enhancement activities include, but are not limited to:
    1. Population assessment (e.g., counting, resighting, marking for 
identification, flipper tags);
    2. Health and disease studies (e.g., tissue sampling, morphometric 
measurements);
    3. Foraging studies (e.g., telemetry, scat collection);
    4. De-worming research (e.g., fecal samples, testing anti-parasite 
treatments);
    5. Translocation of weaned pups within the NWHI to improve juvenile 
survival;
    6. Mitigation of fishery interactions (e.g., disentanglement, 
removal of fishing hooks); and
    7. Mitigation of adult male aggression (e.g., removal and 
relocation of aggressive males).
     Status Quo Alternative: The Status Quo Alternative would 
consist of the existing types and scope of management, research and 
enhancement activities (including those identified in the No Action 
Alternative). New permits would be issued to maintain the current 
levels of research and enhancement activities. Existing management 
activities include but are not limited to protecting seals that haul 
out on recreational beaches and creating effective outreach messages, 
brochures, signs and volunteer programs to minimize human disturbance 
and other adverse impacts.
     Enhanced Implementation Alternative (Proposed Action): The 
Proposed Action would result in implementation and continuation of 
activities identified in the Status Quo, as well as additional 
activities to achieve more comprehensive Recovery Plan implementation. 
These additional activities would include, but are not limited to:
    1. Vaccination studies (including potential vaccination);
    2. Aversive conditioning (e.g., the development of tools to modify 
undesirable seal behavior including interactions with humans or 
domestic animals);
    3. Archipelago-wide translocation to improve juvenile survival; and
    4. De-worming.
    The PEIS will assess the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects 
of implementing the alternative approaches for funding, undertaking, 
and permitting the management, research and enhancement activities on 
Hawaiian monk seals as well as other components of the marine ecosystem 
and human environment. Anyone having relevant information they believe 
NMFS should consider in its analysis should provide a description of 
that information along with complete citations for supporting 
documents.

Public Involvement

    Scoping is an early and open process for determining the scope of 
issues to be addressed in a PEIS and for identifying the significant 
issues related to the proposed action. A principal objective of the 
scoping and public involvement process is to identify a range of 
reasonable management alternatives that will delineate critical issues 
and provide a clear basis for distinguishing among those alternatives 
and selecting a preferred alternative. Through this notice, we are 
notifying the public that a NEPA analysis and decision--making process 
for this proposed action has been initiated so that interested or 
affected people may participate and contribute to the final decision. 
NMFS will ask for additional public comments once the Draft PEIS is 
prepared and available. For additional information about Hawaiian monk 
seals and the PEIS process, please visit our website at https://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/eis/hawaiianmonkseal.htm. NMFS estimates 
the Draft PEIS will be available in late spring 2011.

Scoping Meetings

    Public scoping meetings will be held on the following dates, times, 
and locations:
    1. Wednesday, October 20, 2010, 5:30 -- 8:30 p.m., Central Union 
Church, 1660 South Beretania Street, Honolulu, O`ahu;
    2. Thursday, October 21, 2010, 6 -- 9 p.m., Mokup[atilde]papa 
Discovery Center, 308 Kamehameha Avenue, Suite 109, Hilo, Hawai`i;
    3. Monday, October 25, 2010, 6 -- 9 p.m., NOAA Sanctuaries New 
Community Learning Center, 726 South K[itilde]hei Road, K[itilde]hei, 
Maui;
    4. Tuesday, October 26, 2010, 6 -- 9 p.m., Hale Mahaolu Home 
Pumehana, 290 Kolapa Place, Kaunakakai, Moloka`i; and
    5. Wednesday, October 27, 2010, 6 -- 9 p.m., Wilcox Elementary 
School, 4319 Hardy Street, L[itilde]hu`e, Kaua`i.
    Comments will be accepted at these meetings as well as during the 
scoping period, and can be submitted to NMFS by November 15, 2010 (see 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). We request that you include in your 
comments: (1) Your name, address, and affiliation (if any); and (2) Any 
background documents to

[[Page 60723]]

support your comments as you think necessary.

Special Accommodations

    These meetings are accessible to people with disabilities. Requests 
for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be 
directed to Rachel Sprague, (808) 944-2200 (phone) or (808) 973-2941 
(fax), at least 5 days before the scheduled meeting date.

    Dated: September 22, 2010.
Eric C. Schwaab,
Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2010-24738 Filed 9-30-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-S