Marine Mammals; Pinniped Removal Authority; Approval of Application, 60825 [2018-25871]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 228 / Tuesday, November 27, 2018 / Notices Special Accommodations This meeting is accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the SAFMC office (see ADDRESSES) at least 5 business days prior to the meeting. Note: The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: November 21, 2018. Rey Israel Marquez, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–25827 Filed 11–26–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration XRIN 0648–XF763 Marine Mammals; Pinniped Removal Authority; Approval of Application National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce (NOAA). ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: NMFS announces the approval of an application from the state of Oregon (state) for lethal removal of individually identifiable predatory California sea lions (CSL; Zalophus californianus) in the vicinity of Willamette Falls to minimize pinniped predation on Upper Willamette River (UWR) spring-run Chinook salmon (Onchorhynchus spp.) and UWR winter steelhead, both listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), in the Willamette River in Oregon. This authorization is pursuant to section 120 of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). NMFS also announces availability of decision documents and other information relied upon in making this determination. ADDRESSES: Additional information about our determination may be obtained by visiting the NMFS West Coast Region’s website: http:// www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov, or by writing to us at: NMFS West Coast Region, Protected Resources Division, 1201 Lloyd Blvd., Suite 1100, Portland, OR 97232. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Robert Anderson at the above address, by phone at (503) 231–2226, or by email at, robert.c.anderson@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:45 Nov 26, 2018 Jkt 247001 Background Section 120 of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361, et seq.) allows the Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, and the West Coast Regional Administrator of NMFS, the discretion to authorize the intentional lethal taking of individually identifiable pinnipeds that are having a significant negative impact on salmonid fishery stocks that are either: (1) Listed under the ESA, (2) approaching a threatened or endangered status, or (3) migrate through the Ballard Locks in Seattle. The authorization applies only to pinnipeds that are not: (1) Listed under the ESA, (2) designated as depleted, or (3) designated a strategic stock. On October 6, 2017, NMFS received an application signed by the director of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) on the state’s behalf, requesting authorization under section 120 of the MMPA to intentionally take, by lethal methods, individually identifiable predatory CSL in the vicinity of Willamette Falls, which were then having a significant negative impact on the recovery of threatened UWR spring-run Chinook salmon and UWR winter steelhead. As required under the MMPA, NMFS convened a Pinniped-Fishery Interaction Task Force (Task Force). The role of the Task Force is to recommend to NMFS approval or denial of the state’s application along with recommendations of the proposed location, time, and method of such taking, criteria for evaluating the success of the action, and the duration of the intentional lethal taking authority. The Task Force must also suggest non-lethal alternatives, if available and practicable, including a recommended course of action. Pursuant to the MMPA, NMFS determined that the state’s application contained sufficient information to warrant convening the Task Force. On November 9, 2017, NMFS published a notice in the Federal Register (82 FR 52083), announcing receipt of the state’s application, and soliciting public comments on the application and any additional information that NMFS should consider in making its decision. On August 20–22, 2018, NMFS convened a Task Force that was open to the public. The Task Force reviewed the state’s application, public comments on the application, and other information related to CSL predation on UWR spring-run Chinook salmon and UWR winter steelhead at Willamette Falls. The Task Force completed and submitted its report to NMFS on October 15, 2018. The majority of Task PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 60825 Force members present at the meeting (12 of 16) recommended that NMFS approve the state’s application, while 1 Task Force member recommended that NMFS deny the state’s application, and 3 Task Force members abstained. All decision documents, including a copy of the authorization, are available on NMFS’s West Coast Region web page (see ADDRESSES). Findings As required under section 7(a)(2) under the ESA, NMFS completed informal consultation, and in accordance with NEPA, NMFS completed an environmental assessment with a finding of no significant impact. In considering a state’s application to lethally remove pinnipeds, NMFS is also required, pursuant to section 120(b)(1) of the MMPA, to determine that individually identifiable pinnipeds are having a significant negative impact on the decline or recovery of at-risk salmonid fishery stocks. Based on these requirements, considerations, and analyses, NMFS has determined that the requirements of section 120 of the MMPA have been met and it is therefore reasonable to issue an authorization to the state for the lethal removal of individually identifiable predatory CSL through 2023. Dated: November 21, 2018. Donna Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–25871 Filed 11–26–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary U.S. Strategic Command Strategic Advisory Group; Notice of Federal Advisory Committee Meeting Office of the Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff, U.S. Strategic Command Strategic Advisory Group, Department of Defense. ACTION: Notice of Federal Advisory Committee meeting. AGENCY: The Department of Defense (DoD) is publishing this notice to announce that the following Federal Advisory Committee meeting of the U.S. Strategic Command Strategic Advisory Group will take place. DATES: Day 1—Closed to the public Thursday, November 29, 2018, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Day 2—Closed to the public Friday, November 30, 2018, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\27NON1.SGM 27NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 228 (Tuesday, November 27, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Page 60825]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-25871]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

XRIN 0648-XF763


Marine Mammals; Pinniped Removal Authority; Approval of 
Application

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

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces the approval of an application from the state 
of Oregon (state) for lethal removal of individually identifiable 
predatory California sea lions (CSL; Zalophus californianus) in the 
vicinity of Willamette Falls to minimize pinniped predation on Upper 
Willamette River (UWR) spring-run Chinook salmon (Onchorhynchus spp.) 
and UWR winter steelhead, both listed as threatened under the 
Endangered Species Act (ESA), in the Willamette River in Oregon. This 
authorization is pursuant to section 120 of the Marine Mammal 
Protection Act (MMPA). NMFS also announces availability of decision 
documents and other information relied upon in making this 
determination.

ADDRESSES: Additional information about our determination may be 
obtained by visiting the NMFS West Coast Region's website:  http://www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov, or by writing to us at: NMFS West 
Coast Region, Protected Resources Division, 1201 Lloyd Blvd., Suite 
1100, Portland, OR 97232.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Robert Anderson at the above 
address, by phone at (503) 231-2226, or by email at, 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    Section 120 of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361, et seq.) allows the 
Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Assistant Administrator for 
Fisheries, and the West Coast Regional Administrator of NMFS, the 
discretion to authorize the intentional lethal taking of individually 
identifiable pinnipeds that are having a significant negative impact on 
salmonid fishery stocks that are either: (1) Listed under the ESA, (2) 
approaching a threatened or endangered status, or (3) migrate through 
the Ballard Locks in Seattle. The authorization applies only to 
pinnipeds that are not: (1) Listed under the ESA, (2) designated as 
depleted, or (3) designated a strategic stock.
    On October 6, 2017, NMFS received an application signed by the 
director of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) on the 
state's behalf, requesting authorization under section 120 of the MMPA 
to intentionally take, by lethal methods, individually identifiable 
predatory CSL in the vicinity of Willamette Falls, which were then 
having a significant negative impact on the recovery of threatened UWR 
spring-run Chinook salmon and UWR winter steelhead. As required under 
the MMPA, NMFS convened a Pinniped-Fishery Interaction Task Force (Task 
Force). The role of the Task Force is to recommend to NMFS approval or 
denial of the state's application along with recommendations of the 
proposed location, time, and method of such taking, criteria for 
evaluating the success of the action, and the duration of the 
intentional lethal taking authority. The Task Force must also suggest 
non-lethal alternatives, if available and practicable, including a 
recommended course of action.
    Pursuant to the MMPA, NMFS determined that the state's application 
contained sufficient information to warrant convening the Task Force. 
On November 9, 2017, NMFS published a notice in the Federal Register 
(82 FR 52083), announcing receipt of the state's application, and 
soliciting public comments on the application and any additional 
information that NMFS should consider in making its decision. On August 
20-22, 2018, NMFS convened a Task Force that was open to the public. 
The Task Force reviewed the state's application, public comments on the 
application, and other information related to CSL predation on UWR 
spring-run Chinook salmon and UWR winter steelhead at Willamette Falls. 
The Task Force completed and submitted its report to NMFS on October 
15, 2018. The majority of Task Force members present at the meeting (12 
of 16) recommended that NMFS approve the state's application, while 1 
Task Force member recommended that NMFS deny the state's application, 
and 3 Task Force members abstained. All decision documents, including a 
copy of the authorization, are available on NMFS's West Coast Region 
web page (see ADDRESSES).

Findings

    As required under section 7(a)(2) under the ESA, NMFS completed 
informal consultation, and in accordance with NEPA, NMFS completed an 
environmental assessment with a finding of no significant impact. In 
considering a state's application to lethally remove pinnipeds, NMFS is 
also required, pursuant to section 120(b)(1) of the MMPA, to determine 
that individually identifiable pinnipeds are having a significant 
negative impact on the decline or recovery of at-risk salmonid fishery 
stocks. Based on these requirements, considerations, and analyses, NMFS 
has determined that the requirements of section 120 of the MMPA have 
been met and it is therefore reasonable to issue an authorization to 
the state for the lethal removal of individually identifiable predatory 
CSL through 2023.

     Dated: November 21, 2018.
Donna Wieting,
Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-25871 Filed 11-26-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P