Fisheries Off West Coast States; the Highly Migratory Species Fishery; Closure, 24398-24399 [2019-11014]

Download as PDF 24398 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 102 / Tuesday, May 28, 2019 / Rules and Regulations ILLINOIS—1997 ANNUAL PM2.5 NAAQS—Continued [Primary and secondary] Designation a Classification Designated area Date 1 * * * * Date 2 Type * * Type * a Includes Indian Country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 1 This date is 90 days after January 5, 2005, unless otherwise noted. 2 This date is July 2, 2014, unless otherwise noted. * * * * * [FR Doc. 2019–10970 Filed 5–24–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 031125294–4091–02] RIN 0648–WCR–A002 Fisheries Off West Coast States; the Highly Migratory Species Fishery; Closure National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS is prohibiting fishing with large-mesh drift gillnet (DGN) gear (≥14 inches mesh) off the coast of southern California east of 120° W meridian from June 1, 2019, through August 31, 2019. This prohibition is based on the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries’ (AA’s) determination that El Nin˜o conditions are occurring off the coast of southern California. This action protects Endangered Species Act-listed loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta), specifically the endangered North Pacific Ocean Distinct Population Segment. SUMMARY: Effective 12:01 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time (PDT), June 1, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. PDT, August 31, 2019. DATES: jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chris Fanning, West Coast Region (WCR), NMFS, (562) 980–4198, chris.fanning@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The DGN fishery is managed under the Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (50 CFR part 660, subpart K) and occurs off the coast of California. NMFS regulations provide that, ‘‘No person may fish with, set, or haul back drift VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 May 24, 2019 Jkt 247001 gillnet gear in U.S. waters of the Pacific Ocean east of the 120° W meridian from June 1 through August 31 during a forecasted, or occurring, El Nin˜o event off the coast of southern California’’ (50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)). This area, which falls within the Southern California Bight (SCB), is referred to in the regulations as the ‘‘Pacific loggerhead conservation area.’’ Under 50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)(ii), the AA is to rely on information developed by NOAA offices (the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) and the West Coast Office of the Coast Watch program) to make the determination that an El Nin˜o event is forecasted or occurring off southern California. The AA is to use monthly sea surface temperature (SST) charts to determine whether there are warmer-than-normal SSTs off southern California ‘‘during the months prior to the closure months for years in which an El Nin˜o event has been declared’’ by the CPC. Specifically, the AA is to use SST data from the third and second months prior to the month of closure. NMFS published these regulations to protect loggerhead sea turtles, which are listed under the Endangered Species Act. The regulations addressed a reasonable and prudent alternative (RPA) included in NMFS’ 2000 biological opinion on issuance of an incidental take permit under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The biological opinion concluded that bycatch in the DGN fishery was likely to jeopardize the continued existence of loggerhead sea turtles and, as an RPA, recommended the fishery be closed during the summer months when El Nin˜o conditions are present to avoid the likelihood of jeopardy. The regulations implemented in 2003 addressed this RPA. On February 14, 2019, the CPC issued an El Nin˜o Advisory, declaring that El Nin˜o conditions formed during January 2019, based on the presence of aboveaverage SSTs across most of the equatorial Pacific Ocean. Since that initial advisory, all monthly CPC updates have stated that El Nin˜o conditions remain in these waters. The PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 May 9, 2019, update reaffirmed El Nin˜o conditions are currently present. On May 7, 2019, NMFS staff reviewed the SST anomalies in the SCB during March and April of 2019, relying on SST maps available through NOAA’s Coast Watch program (for details see http://coastwatch.pfeg.noaa.gov/ erddap/index.html). These maps indicated that SSTs were above normal in the SCB. NMFS concluded that a determination of El Nin˜o conditions off southern California is warranted based on SSTs that are warmer than normal during the third and second months prior to the month of the closure, consistent with regulations at 50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)(ii). If SSTs return to normal or below normal during a closure period, regulations at 50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)(iii) state that the AA may re-open the fishery after publishing a Federal Register notice announcing that El Nin˜o conditions are no longer present in the SCB. Classification This action is required by regulations at 50 CFR 660.713 and is exempt from Office of Management and Budget review under Executive Order 12866. NMFS finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) for the time-area closure of the DGN fishery. Notice and comment procedures are impracticable and contrary to the public interest. The most recent El Nin˜o determination occurred on May 9, 2019, and regulations require that the closure period begin on June 1; therefore, there is insufficient time for notice and comment procedures. For the same reasons, NMFS also finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to waive the general requirement for a 30-day delay in effectiveness for this action. This measure is based upon the best available information and is necessary for the conservation of loggerhead sea turtles. The closure period anticipated by the regulation ends, at the latest, on August 31, 2019. A delay in effectiveness may E:\FR\FM\28MYR1.SGM 28MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 102 / Tuesday, May 28, 2019 / Rules and Regulations allow the fishery to interact with and injure or kill loggerhead sea turtles that may occur within the SCB during the time period in which the regulation was intended to protect loggerheads. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: May 21, 2019. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–11014 Filed 5–24–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 180713633–9174–02] RIN 0648–XH046 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Exchange of Flatfish in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and AGENCY: Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; reallocation. NMFS is exchanging unused yellowfin sole Community Development Quota (CDQ) for rock sole CDQ acceptable biological catch (ABC) reserves in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area. This action is necessary to allow the 2019 total allowable catch of rock sole in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area to be harvested. DATES: Effective May 28, 2019 through December 31, 2019. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Steve Whitney, 907–586–7228. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI) according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP SUMMARY: 24399 appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679. The 2019 rock sole and yellowfin sole CDQ reserves specified in the BSAI are 5,040 metric tons (mt) and 16,478 mt as established by the final 2019 and 2020 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (84 FR 9000, March 13, 2019). The 2019 rock sole and yellowfin sole CDQ ABC reserves are 7,683 mt and 11,684 mt as established by the final 2019 and 2020 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (84 FR 9000, March 13, 2019). The Aleutian Pribilof Island Community Development Association has requested that NMFS exchange 400 mt of yellowfin sole CDQ reserves for 400 mt of rock sole CDQ ABC reserves under § 679.31(d). Therefore, in accordance with § 679.31(d), NMFS exchanges 400 mt of yellowfin sole CDQ reserves for 400 mt of rock sole CDQ ABC reserves in the BSAI. This action also decreases and increases the TACs and CDQ ABC reserves by the corresponding amounts. Tables 11 and 13 of the final 2019 and 2020 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (84 FR 9000, March 13, 2019) are further revised as follows: TABLE 11—FINAL 2019 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT QUOTA (CDQ) RESERVES, INCIDENTAL CATCH AMOUNTS (ICAS), AND AMENDMENT 80 ALLOCATIONS OF THE ALEUTIAN ISLANDS PACIFIC OCEAN PERCH, AND BSAI FLATHEAD SOLE, ROCK SOLE, AND YELLOWFIN SOLE TACS [Amounts are in metric tons] Pacific ocean perch Sector Eastern Aleutian district TAC .......................................................... CDQ ......................................................... ICA ........................................................... BSAI trawl limited access ........................ Amendment 80 ......................................... Central Aleutian district 11,009 1,178 100 973 8,758 Western Aleutian district 8,385 897 60 743 6,685 10,000 1,070 10 178 8,742 Flathead sole Rock sole Yellowfin sole BSAI BSAI BSAI 14,500 1,552 3,000 ........................ 9,949 47,500 5,440 6,000 ........................ 36,060 153,600 16,078 4,000 18,351 115,171 Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding. TABLE 13—FINAL 2019 AND 2020 ABC SURPLUS, ABC RESERVES, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT QUOTA (CDQ) ABC RESERVES, AND AMENDMENT 80 ABC RESERVES IN THE BSAI FOR FLATHEAD SOLE, ROCK SOLE, AND YELLOWFIN SOLE [Amounts are in metric tons] 2019 Flathead sole jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES Sector ABC .......................................................... TAC .......................................................... ABC surplus ............................................. ABC reserve ............................................. CDQ ABC reserve ................................... Amendment 80 ABC reserve ................... 66,625 14,500 52,125 52,125 5,577 46,548 2019 Rock sole 2019 Yellowfin sole 118,900 47,500 71,400 71,400 7,283 64,117 263,200 153,600 109,600 109,600 12,084 97,516 2020 1 Flathead sole 68,448 14,500 53,948 53,948 5,772 48,176 2020 1 Rock sole 143,700 57,100 86,600 86,600 9,266 77,334 2020 1 Yellowfin sole 257,800 166,425 91,375 91,375 9,777 81,598 1 The 2020 allocations for Amendment 80 species between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited access sector will not be known until eligible participants apply for participation in the program by November 1, 2019. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 May 24, 2019 Jkt 247001 PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 E:\FR\FM\28MYR1.SGM 28MYR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 102 (Tuesday, May 28, 2019)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 24398-24399]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-11014]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 660

[Docket No. 031125294-4091-02]
RIN 0648-WCR-A002


Fisheries Off West Coast States; the Highly Migratory Species 
Fishery; Closure

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS is prohibiting fishing with large-mesh drift gillnet 
(DGN) gear (=14 inches mesh) off the coast of southern 
California east of 120[deg] W meridian from June 1, 2019, through 
August 31, 2019. This prohibition is based on the Assistant 
Administrator for Fisheries' (AA's) determination that El Ni[ntilde]o 
conditions are occurring off the coast of southern California. This 
action protects Endangered Species Act-listed loggerhead sea turtles 
(Caretta caretta), specifically the endangered North Pacific Ocean 
Distinct Population Segment.

DATES: Effective 12:01 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time (PDT), June 1, 2019, 
through 11:59 p.m. PDT, August 31, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chris Fanning, West Coast Region 
(WCR), NMFS, (562) 980-4198, [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The DGN fishery is managed under the Fishery 
Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory 
Species (50 CFR part 660, subpart K) and occurs off the coast of 
California. NMFS regulations provide that, ``No person may fish with, 
set, or haul back drift gillnet gear in U.S. waters of the Pacific 
Ocean east of the 120[deg] W meridian from June 1 through August 31 
during a forecasted, or occurring, El Ni[ntilde]o event off the coast 
of southern California'' (50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)). This area, which falls 
within the Southern California Bight (SCB), is referred to in the 
regulations as the ``Pacific loggerhead conservation area.''
    Under 50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)(ii), the AA is to rely on information 
developed by NOAA offices (the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) and the 
West Coast Office of the Coast Watch program) to make the determination 
that an El Ni[ntilde]o event is forecasted or occurring off southern 
California. The AA is to use monthly sea surface temperature (SST) 
charts to determine whether there are warmer-than-normal SSTs off 
southern California ``during the months prior to the closure months for 
years in which an El Ni[ntilde]o event has been declared'' by the CPC. 
Specifically, the AA is to use SST data from the third and second 
months prior to the month of closure.
    NMFS published these regulations to protect loggerhead sea turtles, 
which are listed under the Endangered Species Act. The regulations 
addressed a reasonable and prudent alternative (RPA) included in NMFS' 
2000 biological opinion on issuance of an incidental take permit under 
the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The biological opinion concluded that 
bycatch in the DGN fishery was likely to jeopardize the continued 
existence of loggerhead sea turtles and, as an RPA, recommended the 
fishery be closed during the summer months when El Ni[ntilde]o 
conditions are present to avoid the likelihood of jeopardy. The 
regulations implemented in 2003 addressed this RPA.
    On February 14, 2019, the CPC issued an El Ni[ntilde]o Advisory, 
declaring that El Ni[ntilde]o conditions formed during January 2019, 
based on the presence of above-average SSTs across most of the 
equatorial Pacific Ocean. Since that initial advisory, all monthly CPC 
updates have stated that El Ni[ntilde]o conditions remain in these 
waters. The May 9, 2019, update reaffirmed El Ni[ntilde]o conditions 
are currently present.
    On May 7, 2019, NMFS staff reviewed the SST anomalies in the SCB 
during March and April of 2019, relying on SST maps available through 
NOAA's Coast Watch program (for details see http://coastwatch.pfeg.noaa.gov/erddap/index.html). These maps indicated that 
SSTs were above normal in the SCB. NMFS concluded that a determination 
of El Ni[ntilde]o conditions off southern California is warranted based 
on SSTs that are warmer than normal during the third and second months 
prior to the month of the closure, consistent with regulations at 50 
CFR 660.713(c)(2)(ii).
    If SSTs return to normal or below normal during a closure period, 
regulations at 50 CFR 660.713(c)(2)(iii) state that the AA may re-open 
the fishery after publishing a Federal Register notice announcing that 
El Ni[ntilde]o conditions are no longer present in the SCB.

Classification

    This action is required by regulations at 50 CFR 660.713 and is 
exempt from Office of Management and Budget review under Executive 
Order 12866.
    NMFS finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior 
notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set 
forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) for the time-area closure of the DGN 
fishery. Notice and comment procedures are impracticable and contrary 
to the public interest. The most recent El Ni[ntilde]o determination 
occurred on May 9, 2019, and regulations require that the closure 
period begin on June 1; therefore, there is insufficient time for 
notice and comment procedures. For the same reasons, NMFS also finds 
good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to waive the general requirement 
for a 30-day delay in effectiveness for this action. This measure is 
based upon the best available information and is necessary for the 
conservation of loggerhead sea turtles. The closure period anticipated 
by the regulation ends, at the latest, on August 31, 2019. A delay in 
effectiveness may

[[Page 24399]]

allow the fishery to interact with and injure or kill loggerhead sea 
turtles that may occur within the SCB during the time period in which 
the regulation was intended to protect loggerheads.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: May 21, 2019.
Jennifer M. Wallace,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2019-11014 Filed 5-24-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P