Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Alaska Fisheries Science Center Fisheries Research, 54893 [2019-22251]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 198 / Friday, October 11, 2019 / Notices Dated: October 8, 2019. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–22291 Filed 10–10–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XR058 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Alaska Fisheries Science Center Fisheries Research National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of issuance of Letter of Authorization. AGENCY: jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, and implementing regulations, notification is hereby given that a Letter of Authorization (LOA) has been issued to the NMFS Alaska Fisheries Science Center (AFSC) for the take of marine mammals incidental to fisheries research conducted in multiple specified geographical regions. DATES: Effective from October 7, 2019, through October 7, 2024. ADDRESSES: The LOA and supporting documentation is available online: www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/ incidental-take-authorization-noaafisheries-afsc-fisheries-and-ecosystemresearch. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed below. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ben Laws, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background Paragraphs 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(5)(A) and (D)) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other than commercial fishing) within a specified geographical region if certain findings are made and either regulations are issued or, if the taking is limited to harassment, a notice of a proposed authorization is provided to the public for review. An authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS finds VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:56 Oct 10, 2019 Jkt 250001 that the taking will have a negligible impact on the species or stock(s), will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where relevant), and if the permissible methods of taking and requirements pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such takings are set forth. NMFS has defined ‘‘negligible impact’’ in 50 CFR 216.103 as ‘‘an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.’’ Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the MMPA defines ‘‘harassment’’ as: Any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (Level A harassment); or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering (Level B harassment). Summary of Request On September 6, 2017, we received an adequate and complete request from AFSC for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to fisheries research activities. On August 1, 2018 (83 FR 37638), we published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register, requesting comments and information related to the proposed rule for thirty days. The final rule was published in the Federal Register on September 5, 2019 (84 FR 46788). For detailed information on this action, please refer to those documents. The regulations include mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements for the incidental take of marine mammals during fisheries research activities in the specified geographic regions. AFSC conducts fisheries research using trawl gear used at various levels in the water column, hook-and-line gear (including longlines with multiple hooks), gillnets, and other gear. If a marine mammal interacts with gear deployed by AFSC, the outcome could potentially be Level A harassment, serious injury (i.e., any injury that will likely result in mortality), or mortality. We pooled the estimated number of incidents of take resulting from gear interactions and assessed the potential impacts accordingly. AFSC also uses various active acoustic devices in the conduct of fisheries research, and use of PO 00000 Frm 00061 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 54893 these devices has the potential to result in Level B harassment of marine mammals. Level B harassment of pinnipeds hauled out on land may also occur as a result of visual disturbance from vessels conducting AFSC research. AFSC is authorized to take individuals of 19 species by Level A harassment, serious injury, or mortality and of 25 species by Level B harassment. Authorization We have issued an LOA to AFSC authorizing the take of marine mammals incidental to fishery research activities, as described above. Take of marine mammals will be minimized through implementation of the following mitigation measures: (1) Required monitoring of the sampling areas to detect the presence of marine mammals before deployment of certain research gear; and (2) implementation of a ‘‘move-on’’ rule in certain circumstances that is expected to reduce the potential for physical interaction with marine mammals. Additionally, the rule includes an adaptive management component that allows for timely modification of mitigation or monitoring measures based on new information, when appropriate. The AFSC will submit reports as required. Based on these findings and the information discussed in the preamble to the final rule, the activities described will have a negligible impact on marine mammal stocks and will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the affected marine mammal stock for subsistence uses. Dated: October 7, 2019. Catherine G. Marzin, Deputy Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–22251 Filed 10–10–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Patent and Trademark Office [Docket No. PTO–P–2019–0037] Grant of Interim Extension of the Term of U.S. Patent No. 6,406,699–ECI® (ELIAS Cancer Immunotherapy) United States Patent and Trademark Office, Department of Commerce. ACTION: Notice of Interim Patent Term Extension. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued an order granting interim extension for a oneyear interim extension of the term of U.S. Patent No. 6,406,699. E:\FR\FM\11OCN1.SGM 11OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 198 (Friday, October 11, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Page 54893]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-22251]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XR058


Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals 
Incidental to Alaska Fisheries Science Center Fisheries Research

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

ACTION: Notice of issuance of Letter of Authorization.

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SUMMARY: In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as 
amended, and implementing regulations, notification is hereby given 
that a Letter of Authorization (LOA) has been issued to the NMFS Alaska 
Fisheries Science Center (AFSC) for the take of marine mammals 
incidental to fisheries research conducted in multiple specified 
geographical regions.

DATES: Effective from October 7, 2019, through October 7, 2024.

ADDRESSES: The LOA and supporting documentation is available online: 
www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/incidental-take-authorization-noaa-fisheries-afsc-fisheries-and-ecosystem-research. In case of problems 
accessing these documents, please call the contact listed below.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ben Laws, Office of Protected 
Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Paragraphs 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 
1371(a)(5)(A) and (D)) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon 
request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers 
of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity 
(other than commercial fishing) within a specified geographical region 
if certain findings are made and either regulations are issued or, if 
the taking is limited to harassment, a notice of a proposed 
authorization is provided to the public for review.
    An authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS 
finds that the taking will have a negligible impact on the species or 
stock(s), will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the 
availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where 
relevant), and if the permissible methods of taking and requirements 
pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such takings 
are set forth. NMFS has defined ``negligible impact'' in 50 CFR 216.103 
as ``an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be 
reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely 
affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of 
recruitment or survival.''
    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the 
MMPA defines ``harassment'' as: Any act of pursuit, torment, or 
annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or 
marine mammal stock in the wild (Level A harassment); or (ii) has the 
potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild 
by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not 
limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or 
sheltering (Level B harassment).

Summary of Request

    On September 6, 2017, we received an adequate and complete request 
from AFSC for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to 
fisheries research activities. On August 1, 2018 (83 FR 37638), we 
published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register, 
requesting comments and information related to the proposed rule for 
thirty days. The final rule was published in the Federal Register on 
September 5, 2019 (84 FR 46788). For detailed information on this 
action, please refer to those documents. The regulations include 
mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements for the incidental 
take of marine mammals during fisheries research activities in the 
specified geographic regions.
    AFSC conducts fisheries research using trawl gear used at various 
levels in the water column, hook-and-line gear (including longlines 
with multiple hooks), gillnets, and other gear. If a marine mammal 
interacts with gear deployed by AFSC, the outcome could potentially be 
Level A harassment, serious injury (i.e., any injury that will likely 
result in mortality), or mortality. We pooled the estimated number of 
incidents of take resulting from gear interactions and assessed the 
potential impacts accordingly. AFSC also uses various active acoustic 
devices in the conduct of fisheries research, and use of these devices 
has the potential to result in Level B harassment of marine mammals. 
Level B harassment of pinnipeds hauled out on land may also occur as a 
result of visual disturbance from vessels conducting AFSC research. 
AFSC is authorized to take individuals of 19 species by Level A 
harassment, serious injury, or mortality and of 25 species by Level B 
harassment.

Authorization

    We have issued an LOA to AFSC authorizing the take of marine 
mammals incidental to fishery research activities, as described above. 
Take of marine mammals will be minimized through implementation of the 
following mitigation measures: (1) Required monitoring of the sampling 
areas to detect the presence of marine mammals before deployment of 
certain research gear; and (2) implementation of a ``move-on'' rule in 
certain circumstances that is expected to reduce the potential for 
physical interaction with marine mammals. Additionally, the rule 
includes an adaptive management component that allows for timely 
modification of mitigation or monitoring measures based on new 
information, when appropriate. The AFSC will submit reports as 
required.
    Based on these findings and the information discussed in the 
preamble to the final rule, the activities described will have a 
negligible impact on marine mammal stocks and will not have an 
unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the affected marine 
mammal stock for subsistence uses.

    Dated: October 7, 2019.
Catherine G. Marzin,
Deputy Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2019-22251 Filed 10-10-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P