Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Request for Information for the Issuance of Protective Regulations Under Section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act for the Conservation of Threatened Corals, 1616-1618 [2015-00366]

Download as PDF 1616 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 8 / Tuesday, January 13, 2015 / Proposed Rules 1–800–378–3160 or via email www.BCPIWEB.com. This document does not contain proposed information collection requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104–13. In addition, therefore, it does not contain any proposed information collection burden ‘‘for small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees,’’ pursuant to the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Public Law 107–198, see 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(4). Provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 do not apply to this proceeding. Members of the public should note that from the time a Notice of Proposed Rule Making is issued until the matter is no longer subject to Commission consideration or court review, all ex parte contacts are prohibited in Commission proceedings, such as this one, which involve channel allotments. See 47 CFR 1.1204(b) for rules governing permissible ex parte contacts. For information regarding proper filing procedures for comments, see 47 CFR 1.415 and 1.420. List of Subjects in 47 CFR Part 73 Radio, Radio broadcasting. Federal Communications Commission. Nazifa Sawez, Assistant Chief, Audio Division, Media Bureau. For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal Communications Commission proposes to amend 47 CFR part 73 as follows: PART 73—RADIO BROADCAST SERVICES 1. The authority citation for part 73 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 47 U.S.C. 154, 303, 334, 336 and 339. § 73.202 [Amended] 2. Section 73.202(b), the Table of FM Allotments under Oklahoma, is amended by adding Wright City, Channel 295A. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS ■ [FR Doc. 2015–00341 Filed 1–12–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712–01–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:38 Jan 12, 2015 Jkt 235001 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 223 [Docket No. 0911231415–4999–04] RIN 0648–XT12 Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Request for Information for the Issuance of Protective Regulations Under Section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act for the Conservation of Threatened Corals National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Advanced notice of proposed rulemaking; request for information. AGENCY: We, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), are considering proposing protective regulations to provide for the conservation of the 20 coral species recently listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Fifteen of the listed species occur in the IndoPacific and five occur in the Caribbean. This advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) is intended to alert other agencies and the public of our planning efforts and request public input that will assist in identifying actions and activities that may impact the status of these corals, as well as information on the existence and efficacy of on-going conservation activities. This information will help inform our evaluation of what, if any, protective regulations are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these species. DATES: Responses to this request for information must be received by March 16, 2015. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, information, or data on this document, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2014–0158, by any of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal www.regulations.gov. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20140158. Click the ‘‘Comment Now’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Mail: Æ To submit written comments regarding the species listed in Table 1 below, contact the Pacific Islands Region: Lance Smith, Protected Resources Division, National Marine SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00027 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Fisheries Service, Pacific Islands Regional Office, NOAA Inouye Regional Center, 1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818. Æ To submit written comments regarding the species listed in Table 2 below, contact the Southeast Region: Stephania Bolden, Protected Resources Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office, 263 13th Avenue South, Saint Petersburg, FL 33701. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lance Smith, NMFS, Pacific Islands Regional Office, 808–725–5131; Kimberly Maison, NMFS, Pacific Islands Regional Office, 808–725–5143; Stephania Bolden, NMFS, Southeast Regional Office, 727–824–5312; or Marta Nammack, NMFS Office of Protected Resources, 301–427–8469. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background On September 10, 2014, we published a final rule listing 20 species of coral as threatened under the ESA (79 FR 53851). The 15 Indo-Pacific species include Acropora globiceps, Acropora jacquelineae, Acropora lokani, Acropora pharaonis, Acropora retusa, Acropora rudis, Acropora speciosa, Acropora tenella, Anacropora spinosa, Isopora crateriformis, Euphyllia paradivisa, Montipora australiensis, Porites napopora, Pavona diffluens, and Seriatopora aculeata. The five Caribbean species include Dendrogyra cylindrus, Orbicella annularis, Orbicella faveolata, Orbicella franksi, and Mycetophyllia ferox. The final listing rule describes the background of the listing actions for these 20 corals and provides a summary of our conclusions regarding the statuses of the listed corals. For additional background and a summary of natural history and threats to the species, the reader is referred to the Status Review Report, Supplemental Information Report, and Final Listing Rule (all three are available at http:// www.fpir.noaa.gov/PRD/prd_ coral.html). At the time of listing we did not propose any protective regulations pursuant to section 4(d) of the ESA. ESA section 9(a)(1) prohibitions are automatically applied to species listed as endangered but not to species listed as threatened. Section 4(d) of the ESA provides that, whenever a species is listed as threatened, the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) shall issue such regulations as she deems necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the species. Such regulations may include any or all of the prohibitions in ESA section 9(a)(1) that apply automatically to species listed as E:\FR\FM\13JAP1.SGM 13JAP1 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 8 / Tuesday, January 13, 2015 / Proposed Rules endangered. Those section 9(a)(1) prohibitions make it unlawful, with limited specified exceptions, for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to: ‘‘(A) Import any such species into, or export any such species from the United States; (B) take any such species within the United States or the territorial sea of the United States; (C) take any such species upon the high seas; (D) possess, sell, deliver, carry, transport, or ship, by any means whatsoever, any such species taken in violation of subparagraphs (B) and (C); (E) deliver, receive, carry, transport, or ship in interstate or foreign commerce, by any means whatsoever and in the course of a commercial activity, any such species; (F) sell or offer for sale in interstate or foreign commerce any such species; or (G) violate any regulation pertaining to such species or to any threatened species of fish or wildlife listed pursuant to section 1533 of this title and promulgated by the Secretary pursuant to authority provided by this chapter.’’ Section 11 of the ESA provides for civil and criminal penalties for violations of section 9 or regulations issued under the ESA. Whether section 9(a)(1) prohibitions or other regulations are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of species depends in large part upon the biological status of the species, the potential impacts of various activities on the species, and on factors such as the existence and efficacy of other conservation activities. Statuses of the 20 Recently-Listed Corals We determined in the final listing rule that the 20 coral species are not currently in danger of extinction but are likely to become so within the foreseeable future. In the final listing rule we identified nine threats to the corals that posed either a current or future extinction risk (79 FR 53851; September 10, 2014) and further classified the threats by importance. Primary threats identified include ocean warming, disease, and ocean acidification. Threats of medium to low importance include trophic effects of fishing, sedimentation, nutrient enrichment, sea-level rise, predation, and collection and trade. See Tables 1 and 2 below for U.S. distributions of these 20 threatened coral species. For more details on the individual status reviews, threat susceptibilities, and listing determinations for each species, please see the final listing rule (79 FR 53851; September 10, 2014). We also determined Acropora palmata and Acropora cervicornis continue to warrant listing as threatened species; the ESA 4(d) rule (73 FR 64264; October 29, 2009) for those two species previously listed in 2006 remains effective. Developing Protective Regulations We are now considering whether there are protective regulations that are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 20 recently listed corals. We have flexibility under section 4(d) to tailor protective regulations based on the contributions of other existing conservation measures. The 4(d) regulations may prohibit, with respect to threatened species, some or all of the acts which section 9(a)(1) of the ESA prohibits with respect to 1617 endangered species. For those prohibitions we do apply, we may also provide exceptions for certain circumstances in which extending the take prohibitions is not necessary and advisable. For example, we can exempt from regulations activities that may take listed corals but ultimately provide an overall conservation benefit. Seven of the 15 threatened IndoPacific coral species have been confirmed to occur within U.S. Pacific jurisdictional areas including Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Pacific Remote Island areas, and American Samoa (See Table 1). This information may change as more surveys are conducted and better information becomes available. The remaining eight threatened Indo-Pacific coral species have not yet been reported or confirmed within U.S. jurisdiction and are currently considered to occur naturally as foreign species, entirely outside of U.S. jurisdiction; however, they may be observed within U.S. jurisdictions in future surveys, and several are commonly imported into the United States for the marine aquarium trade. All five threatened Caribbean corals occur within U.S. jurisdiction (See Table 2). One of the section 9(a)(1) prohibitions that may be applied pursuant to section 4(d) is the prohibition on the take of species on the high seas. We are therefore requesting information for all 20 newly listed threatened species, wherever they may occur, to help inform our determination of which take prohibitions may be necessary and advisable for their conservation. TABLE 1—U.S. DISTRIBUTION OF 15 THREATENED INDO-PACIFIC CORAL SPECIES asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Guam Acropora globiceps .......................................................................................... Acropora jacquelineae ..................................................................................... Acropora lokani ................................................................................................ Acropora pharaonis ......................................................................................... Acropora retusa ............................................................................................... Acropora rudis ................................................................................................. Acropora speciosa ........................................................................................... Acropora tenella ............................................................................................... Anacropora spinosa ......................................................................................... Euphyllia paradivisa ......................................................................................... Isopora crateriformis ........................................................................................ Montipora australiensis .................................................................................... Pavona diffluens .............................................................................................. Porites napopora ............................................................................................. Seriatopora aculeata ........................................................................................ VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:38 Jan 12, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00028 Fmt 4702 Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands Pacific Remote Island Areas American Samoa X ........................ ........................ ........................ X ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ X X ........................ ........................ ........................ X ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ X X ........................ ........................ ........................ X ........................ X ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ X X ........................ ........................ X ........................ X ........................ ........................ X X ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ Sfmt 4702 E:\FR\FM\13JAP1.SGM 13JAP1 1618 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 8 / Tuesday, January 13, 2015 / Proposed Rules TABLE 2—U.S. DISTRIBUTION OF FIVE NEWLY-LISTED CARIBBEAN CORALS Florida— Atlantic Puerto Rico U.S. Virgin Islands Gulf of Mexico X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X ........................ ........................ X X X asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Mycetophyllia ferox .......................................................................................... Dendrogyra cylindrus ....................................................................................... Orbicella annularis ........................................................................................... Orbicella faveolata ........................................................................................... Orbicella franksi ............................................................................................... Request for Information We are soliciting information from other agencies and the public that will help us determine what, if any, protective regulations are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 20 newly listed coral species. This includes information that will help us understand and analyze impacts of various activities, the existence and efficacy of ongoing conservation activities, and prohibitions that are both necessary and advisable to reduce threats and amenable to management for the conservation of these 20 species. Specifically, we are soliciting information including the following: (1) Current or planned activities within the range of these species and their possible impact on these species; (2) impacts within the species’ ranges that fall within any of the nine major threat categories: Ocean warming, disease, ocean acidification, sea-level rise, nutrient enrichment, sedimentation, predation, trophic effects of fishing, and collection and trade; (3) information on which of the section 9(a)(1) prohibitions on take are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these species, with associated justification; (4) specific activities that should be prohibited for the conservation of the 20 coral species, with associated justification; (5) specific activities that should be excepted from any prohibitions that may be applied because they either provide a conservation benefit or do not detract from the conservation of these species, with associated justification; (6) existing permitting programs that may already provide for the conservation of listed corals through their activity evaluation and permitting process, with associated justification; and (7) the economic costs and benefits likely to result from protective regulations (see DATES and ADDRESSES). We will fully consider all relevant information received in our determination of what protective regulations are necessary and advisable for the conservation of the species. References Cited A complete list of references is available at http://www.fpir.noaa.gov/ VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:38 Jan 12, 2015 Jkt 235001 PRD/prd_coral.html and upon request (see ADDRESSES). Authority The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). Dated: January 2, 2015. Eileen Sobeck, Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2015–00366 Filed 1–12–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 226 RIN 0648–BC56 Endangered and Threatened Species; Proposed Designation of Critical Habitat for the Arctic Ringed Seal; Public Hearings National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of public hearings. AGENCY: We, NMFS, announce the specific dates and locations for four public hearings in Alaska, one each in Nome, Anchorage, Kotzebue, and Barrow, on our proposed rule to designate critical habitat for the threatened Arctic subspecies (Phoca hispida hispida) of the ringed seal (Phoca hispida) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), which published in the Federal Register on December 9, 2014. We also announce that a hearing will be held in Bethel, AK. DATES: Written comments on the proposed rule must be received by March 9, 2015. For specific dates of the public hearings, see SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. SUMMARY: Five public hearings will be held in Alaska, one each in Nome, Anchorage, Kotzebue, Barrow, and Bethel: For specific locations of these ADDRESSES: PO 00000 Frm 00029 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 hearings, see SUPPLMENTARY INFORMATION. You may submit written comments on the proposed rule, identified by NOAA– NMFS–2013–0114, by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to http://www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20130114, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Mail: Address written comments to Jon Kurland, Assistant Regional Administrator for Protected Resources, Alaska Region NMFS, Attn: Ellen Sebastian. Mail comments to P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802–1668. Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on http://www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. 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, or Adobe PDF file formats only. Electronic copies of the proposed rule, list of references and supporting documents, and the draft economic report (i.e., Regulatory Impact Review (RIR)/4(b)(2) Preparatory Assessment/ Initial Regulatory Flexibility Act (IRFA) report) prepared for this action are available from http:// www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20130114 or from the NMFS Alaska Region Web site at http:// alaskafisheries.noaa.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tamara Olson, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 271–2373; Jon Kurland, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 586–7638; or Marta E:\FR\FM\13JAP1.SGM 13JAP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 8 (Tuesday, January 13, 2015)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 1616-1618]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-00366]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 223

[Docket No. 0911231415-4999-04]
RIN 0648-XT12


Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Request for 
Information for the Issuance of Protective Regulations Under Section 
4(d) of the Endangered Species Act for the Conservation of Threatened 
Corals

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

ACTION: Advanced notice of proposed rulemaking; request for 
information.

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

SUMMARY: We, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), are 
considering proposing protective regulations to provide for the 
conservation of the 20 coral species recently listed as threatened 
under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Fifteen of the listed species 
occur in the Indo-Pacific and five occur in the Caribbean. This 
advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) is intended to alert 
other agencies and the public of our planning efforts and request 
public input that will assist in identifying actions and activities 
that may impact the status of these corals, as well as information on 
the existence and efficacy of on-going conservation activities. This 
information will help inform our evaluation of what, if any, protective 
regulations are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 
species.

DATES: Responses to this request for information must be received by 
March 16, 2015.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, information, or data on this 
document, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2014-0158, by any of the following 
methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal www.regulations.gov. Go to 
www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2014-0158. Click the 
``Comment Now'' icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach 
your comments.
     Mail:
    [cir] To submit written comments regarding the species listed in 
Table 1 below, contact the Pacific Islands Region: Lance Smith, 
Protected Resources Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, 
Pacific Islands Regional Office, NOAA Inouye Regional Center, 1845 Wasp 
Blvd., Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818.
    [cir] To submit written comments regarding the species listed in 
Table 2 below, contact the Southeast Region: Stephania Bolden, 
Protected Resources Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, 
Southeast Regional Office, 263 13th Avenue South, Saint Petersburg, FL 
33701.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lance Smith, NMFS, Pacific Islands 
Regional Office, 808-725-5131; Kimberly Maison, NMFS, Pacific Islands 
Regional Office, 808-725-5143; Stephania Bolden, NMFS, Southeast 
Regional Office, 727-824-5312; or Marta Nammack, NMFS Office of 
Protected Resources, 301-427-8469.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    On September 10, 2014, we published a final rule listing 20 species 
of coral as threatened under the ESA (79 FR 53851). The 15 Indo-Pacific 
species include Acropora globiceps, Acropora jacquelineae, Acropora 
lokani, Acropora pharaonis, Acropora retusa, Acropora rudis, Acropora 
speciosa, Acropora tenella, Anacropora spinosa, Isopora crateriformis, 
Euphyllia paradivisa, Montipora australiensis, Porites napopora, Pavona 
diffluens, and Seriatopora aculeata. The five Caribbean species include 
Dendrogyra cylindrus, Orbicella annularis, Orbicella faveolata, 
Orbicella franksi, and Mycetophyllia ferox. The final listing rule 
describes the background of the listing actions for these 20 corals and 
provides a summary of our conclusions regarding the statuses of the 
listed corals. For additional background and a summary of natural 
history and threats to the species, the reader is referred to the 
Status Review Report, Supplemental Information Report, and Final 
Listing Rule (all three are available at http://www.fpir.noaa.gov/PRD/prd_coral.html). At the time of listing we did not propose any 
protective regulations pursuant to section 4(d) of the ESA.
    ESA section 9(a)(1) prohibitions are automatically applied to 
species listed as endangered but not to species listed as threatened. 
Section 4(d) of the ESA provides that, whenever a species is listed as 
threatened, the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) shall issue such 
regulations as she deems necessary and advisable to provide for the 
conservation of the species. Such regulations may include any or all of 
the prohibitions in ESA section 9(a)(1) that apply automatically to 
species listed as

[[Page 1617]]

endangered. Those section 9(a)(1) prohibitions make it unlawful, with 
limited specified exceptions, for any person subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States to: ``(A) Import any such species 
into, or export any such species from the United States; (B) take any 
such species within the United States or the territorial sea of the 
United States; (C) take any such species upon the high seas; (D) 
possess, sell, deliver, carry, transport, or ship, by any means 
whatsoever, any such species taken in violation of subparagraphs (B) 
and (C); (E) deliver, receive, carry, transport, or ship in interstate 
or foreign commerce, by any means whatsoever and in the course of a 
commercial activity, any such species; (F) sell or offer for sale in 
interstate or foreign commerce any such species; or (G) violate any 
regulation pertaining to such species or to any threatened species of 
fish or wildlife listed pursuant to section 1533 of this title and 
promulgated by the Secretary pursuant to authority provided by this 
chapter.'' Section 11 of the ESA provides for civil and criminal 
penalties for violations of section 9 or regulations issued under the 
ESA.
    Whether section 9(a)(1) prohibitions or other regulations are 
necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of species 
depends in large part upon the biological status of the species, the 
potential impacts of various activities on the species, and on factors 
such as the existence and efficacy of other conservation activities.

Statuses of the 20 Recently-Listed Corals

    We determined in the final listing rule that the 20 coral species 
are not currently in danger of extinction but are likely to become so 
within the foreseeable future. In the final listing rule we identified 
nine threats to the corals that posed either a current or future 
extinction risk (79 FR 53851; September 10, 2014) and further 
classified the threats by importance. Primary threats identified 
include ocean warming, disease, and ocean acidification. Threats of 
medium to low importance include trophic effects of fishing, 
sedimentation, nutrient enrichment, sea-level rise, predation, and 
collection and trade. See Tables 1 and 2 below for U.S. distributions 
of these 20 threatened coral species. For more details on the 
individual status reviews, threat susceptibilities, and listing 
determinations for each species, please see the final listing rule (79 
FR 53851; September 10, 2014). We also determined Acropora palmata and 
Acropora cervicornis continue to warrant listing as threatened species; 
the ESA 4(d) rule (73 FR 64264; October 29, 2009) for those two species 
previously listed in 2006 remains effective.

Developing Protective Regulations

    We are now considering whether there are protective regulations 
that are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 20 
recently listed corals. We have flexibility under section 4(d) to 
tailor protective regulations based on the contributions of other 
existing conservation measures. The 4(d) regulations may prohibit, with 
respect to threatened species, some or all of the acts which section 
9(a)(1) of the ESA prohibits with respect to endangered species. For 
those prohibitions we do apply, we may also provide exceptions for 
certain circumstances in which extending the take prohibitions is not 
necessary and advisable. For example, we can exempt from regulations 
activities that may take listed corals but ultimately provide an 
overall conservation benefit.
    Seven of the 15 threatened Indo-Pacific coral species have been 
confirmed to occur within U.S. Pacific jurisdictional areas including 
Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Pacific 
Remote Island areas, and American Samoa (See Table 1). This information 
may change as more surveys are conducted and better information becomes 
available. The remaining eight threatened Indo-Pacific coral species 
have not yet been reported or confirmed within U.S. jurisdiction and 
are currently considered to occur naturally as foreign species, 
entirely outside of U.S. jurisdiction; however, they may be observed 
within U.S. jurisdictions in future surveys, and several are commonly 
imported into the United States for the marine aquarium trade. All five 
threatened Caribbean corals occur within U.S. jurisdiction (See Table 
2). One of the section 9(a)(1) prohibitions that may be applied 
pursuant to section 4(d) is the prohibition on the take of species on 
the high seas. We are therefore requesting information for all 20 newly 
listed threatened species, wherever they may occur, to help inform our 
determination of which take prohibitions may be necessary and advisable 
for their conservation.

                     Table 1--U.S. Distribution of 15 Threatened Indo-Pacific Coral Species
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 Commonwealth
                                                                 of Northern    Pacific  Remote
                                                    Guam           Mariana        Island Areas   American  Samoa
                                                                   Islands
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Acropora globiceps..........................               X                X                X                X
Acropora jacquelineae.......................  ...............  ...............  ...............               X
Acropora lokani.............................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Acropora pharaonis..........................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Acropora retusa.............................               X                X                X                X
Acropora rudis..............................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Acropora speciosa...........................  ...............  ...............               X                X
Acropora tenella............................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Anacropora spinosa..........................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Euphyllia paradivisa........................  ...............  ...............  ...............               X
Isopora crateriformis.......................  ...............  ...............  ...............               X
Montipora australiensis.....................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Pavona diffluens............................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Porites napopora............................  ...............  ...............  ...............  ...............
Seriatopora aculeata........................               X                X   ...............  ...............
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


[[Page 1618]]


                        Table 2--U.S. Distribution of Five Newly-Listed Caribbean Corals
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                 Florida--                        U.S. Virgin
                                                  Atlantic       Puerto Rico        Islands       Gulf of Mexico
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mycetophyllia ferox.........................               X                X                X   ...............
Dendrogyra cylindrus........................               X                X                X   ...............
Orbicella annularis.........................               X                X                X                X
Orbicella faveolata.........................               X                X                X                X
Orbicella franksi...........................               X                X                X                X
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Request for Information

    We are soliciting information from other agencies and the public 
that will help us determine what, if any, protective regulations are 
necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 20 newly listed 
coral species. This includes information that will help us understand 
and analyze impacts of various activities, the existence and efficacy 
of ongoing conservation activities, and prohibitions that are both 
necessary and advisable to reduce threats and amenable to management 
for the conservation of these 20 species. Specifically, we are 
soliciting information including the following: (1) Current or planned 
activities within the range of these species and their possible impact 
on these species; (2) impacts within the species' ranges that fall 
within any of the nine major threat categories: Ocean warming, disease, 
ocean acidification, sea-level rise, nutrient enrichment, 
sedimentation, predation, trophic effects of fishing, and collection 
and trade; (3) information on which of the section 9(a)(1) prohibitions 
on take are necessary and advisable for the conservation of these 
species, with associated justification; (4) specific activities that 
should be prohibited for the conservation of the 20 coral species, with 
associated justification; (5) specific activities that should be 
excepted from any prohibitions that may be applied because they either 
provide a conservation benefit or do not detract from the conservation 
of these species, with associated justification; (6) existing 
permitting programs that may already provide for the conservation of 
listed corals through their activity evaluation and permitting process, 
with associated justification; and (7) the economic costs and benefits 
likely to result from protective regulations (see DATES and ADDRESSES).
    We will fully consider all relevant information received in our 
determination of what protective regulations are necessary and 
advisable for the conservation of the species.

References Cited

    A complete list of references is available at http://www.fpir.noaa.gov/PRD/prd_coral.html and upon request (see ADDRESSES).

Authority

    The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 
1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

    Dated: January 2, 2015.
Eileen Sobeck,
Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2015-00366 Filed 1-12-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P