Whaling Provisions; Aboriginal Subsistence Whaling Quotas, 8177 [2016-03366]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Notices DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XE408 Whaling Provisions; Aboriginal Subsistence Whaling Quotas National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; notification of quota for bowhead whales. AGENCY: NMFS notifies the public of the aboriginal subsistence whaling quota for bowhead whales that it has assigned to the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission (AEWC), and of limitations on the use of the quota deriving from regulations of the International Whaling Commission (IWC). For 2016, the quota is 75 bowhead whales struck. This quota and other applicable limitations govern the harvest of bowhead whales by members of the AEWC. DATES: Effective February 18, 2016. ADDRESSES: Office for International Affairs and Seafood Inspection, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 EastWest Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Melissa Andersen Garcia, (301) 427– 8385. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Aboriginal subsistence whaling in the United States is governed by the Whaling Convention Act (WCA) (16 U.S.C. 916 et seq.). Under the WCA, IWC regulations shall generally become effective with respect to all persons and vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, within 90 days of notification from the IWC Secretariat of an amendment to the IWC Schedule (16 U.S.C. 916k). Regulations that implement the WCA, found at 50 CFR 230.6, require the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) to publish, at least annually, aboriginal subsistence whaling quotas and any other limitations on aboriginal subsistence whaling deriving from regulations of the IWC. At the 64th Annual Meeting of the IWC, the Commission set catch limits for aboriginal subsistence use of bowhead whales from the BeringChukchi-Beaufort Seas stock. The bowhead catch limits were based on a joint request by the United States and the Russian Federation, accompanied by documentation concerning the needs of two Native groups: Alaska Eskimos and Chukotka Natives in the Russian Far East. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:03 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 The IWC set a 6-year block catch limit of 336 bowhead whales landed. For each of the years 2013 through 2018, the number of bowhead whales struck may not exceed 67, except that any unused portion of a strike quota from any prior year may be carried forward. No more than 15 strikes may be added to the strike quota for any one year. At the end of the 2015 harvest, there were 15 unused strikes available for carryforward, so the combined strike quota set by the IWC for 2016 is 82 (67 + 15). An arrangement between the United States and the Russian Federation ensures that the total quota of bowhead whales landed and struck in 2016 will not exceed the limits set by the IWC. Under this arrangement, the Russian natives may use no more than seven strikes, and the Alaska Eskimos may use no more than 75 strikes. Through its cooperative agreement with the AEWC, NOAA has assigned 75 strikes to the Alaska Eskimos. The AEWC will in turn allocate these strikes among the 11 villages whose cultural and subsistence needs have been documented, and will ensure that its hunters use no more than 75 strikes. Other Limitations The IWC regulations, as well as the NOAA regulation at 50 CFR 230.4(c), forbid the taking of calves or any whale accompanied by a calf. NOAA regulations (at 50 CFR 230.4) contain a number of other prohibitions relating to aboriginal subsistence whaling, some of which are summarized here: • Only licensed whaling captains or crew under the control of those captains may engage in whaling. • Captains and crew must follow the provisions of the relevant cooperative agreement between NOAA and a Native American whaling organization. • The aboriginal hunters must have adequate crew, supplies, and equipment to engage in an efficient operation. • Crew may not receive money for participating in the hunt. • No person may sell or offer for sale whale products from whales taken in the hunt, except for authentic articles of Native American handicrafts. • Captains may not continue to whale after the relevant quota is taken, after the season has been closed, or if their licenses have been suspended. They may not engage in whaling in a wasteful manner. PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 8177 Dated: February 11, 2016. John Henderschedt, Director, Office for International Affairs and Seafood Inspection, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–03366 Filed 2–17–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0649–XE447 Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of a public meeting. AGENCY: The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will hold a meeting of its Standing and Special Shrimp Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC). DATES: The meeting will convene via WEBINAR on Tuesday, March 8, 2016 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. EST; you may register for the webinar at: https:// attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/ 1004643937909180674. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. ADDRESSES: Council address: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 2203 N. Lois Avenue, Suite 1100, Tampa, FL 33607; telephone: (813) 348– 1630. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Morgan Kilgour, Fishery Biologist, morgan.kilgour@gulfcouncil.org; Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council telephone: (813) 348–1630. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Agenda The Chairman will start the meeting with introductions and adoption of agenda, approval of minutes from the March 10–12, 2015 Standing, Special Reef Fish, Special Shrimp, and Special Spiny Lobster Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) meeting, and selection of an SSC representative to attend the April, 2016 Council Meeting. The SSC will review updated Penaeid Shrimp Stock Assessments and review an update on the Aggregate Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) and Optimum Yield (OY) Working Group. Lastly, the SSC will discuss other business, if any. —Meeting Adjourns— The Agenda is subject to change, and the latest version along with other E:\FR\FM\18FEN1.SGM 18FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 32 (Thursday, February 18, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Page 8177]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-03366]



[[Page 8177]]

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

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XE408


Whaling Provisions; Aboriginal Subsistence Whaling Quotas

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

ACTION: Notice; notification of quota for bowhead whales.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS notifies the public of the aboriginal subsistence whaling 
quota for bowhead whales that it has assigned to the Alaska Eskimo 
Whaling Commission (AEWC), and of limitations on the use of the quota 
deriving from regulations of the International Whaling Commission 
(IWC). For 2016, the quota is 75 bowhead whales struck. This quota and 
other applicable limitations govern the harvest of bowhead whales by 
members of the AEWC.

DATES: Effective February 18, 2016.

ADDRESSES: Office for International Affairs and Seafood Inspection, 
National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver 
Spring, MD 20910.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Melissa Andersen Garcia, (301) 427-
8385.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Aboriginal subsistence whaling in the United 
States is governed by the Whaling Convention Act (WCA) (16 U.S.C. 916 
et seq.). Under the WCA, IWC regulations shall generally become 
effective with respect to all persons and vessels subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States, within 90 days of notification from 
the IWC Secretariat of an amendment to the IWC Schedule (16 U.S.C. 
916k). Regulations that implement the WCA, found at 50 CFR 230.6, 
require the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) to publish, at least 
annually, aboriginal subsistence whaling quotas and any other 
limitations on aboriginal subsistence whaling deriving from regulations 
of the IWC.
    At the 64th Annual Meeting of the IWC, the Commission set catch 
limits for aboriginal subsistence use of bowhead whales from the 
Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort Seas stock. The bowhead catch limits were based 
on a joint request by the United States and the Russian Federation, 
accompanied by documentation concerning the needs of two Native groups: 
Alaska Eskimos and Chukotka Natives in the Russian Far East.
    The IWC set a 6-year block catch limit of 336 bowhead whales 
landed. For each of the years 2013 through 2018, the number of bowhead 
whales struck may not exceed 67, except that any unused portion of a 
strike quota from any prior year may be carried forward. No more than 
15 strikes may be added to the strike quota for any one year. At the 
end of the 2015 harvest, there were 15 unused strikes available for 
carry-forward, so the combined strike quota set by the IWC for 2016 is 
82 (67 + 15).
    An arrangement between the United States and the Russian Federation 
ensures that the total quota of bowhead whales landed and struck in 
2016 will not exceed the limits set by the IWC. Under this arrangement, 
the Russian natives may use no more than seven strikes, and the Alaska 
Eskimos may use no more than 75 strikes.
    Through its cooperative agreement with the AEWC, NOAA has assigned 
75 strikes to the Alaska Eskimos. The AEWC will in turn allocate these 
strikes among the 11 villages whose cultural and subsistence needs have 
been documented, and will ensure that its hunters use no more than 75 
strikes.

Other Limitations

    The IWC regulations, as well as the NOAA regulation at 50 CFR 
230.4(c), forbid the taking of calves or any whale accompanied by a 
calf.
    NOAA regulations (at 50 CFR 230.4) contain a number of other 
prohibitions relating to aboriginal subsistence whaling, some of which 
are summarized here:
     Only licensed whaling captains or crew under the control 
of those captains may engage in whaling.
     Captains and crew must follow the provisions of the 
relevant cooperative agreement between NOAA and a Native American 
whaling organization.
     The aboriginal hunters must have adequate crew, supplies, 
and equipment to engage in an efficient operation.
     Crew may not receive money for participating in the hunt.
     No person may sell or offer for sale whale products from 
whales taken in the hunt, except for authentic articles of Native 
American handicrafts.
     Captains may not continue to whale after the relevant 
quota is taken, after the season has been closed, or if their licenses 
have been suspended. They may not engage in whaling in a wasteful 
manner.

    Dated: February 11, 2016.
John Henderschedt,
Director, Office for International Affairs and Seafood Inspection, 
National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-03366 Filed 2-17-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P