Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Lighthouse Repair and Tour Operations at Northwest Seal Rock, California, 35268-35269 [2020-12400]

Download as PDF 35268 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 111 / Tuesday, June 9, 2020 / Notices Specified Activities The Navy is proposing to upgrade two waterfront facilities on Naval Station Norfolk: the Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) Marina and the VArea. The Navy is also proposing to conduct general marine structure maintenance, pile replacement, and upgrade activities, as needed, at waterfront facilities at Naval Station Norfolk, Defense Fuel Supply Point Craney Island, and Lambert’s Point Deperming Station. The Navy expects construction will require approximately 574 in-water workdays over the fiveyear period. Five species of marine mammals have been observed in the area and have the potential to be taken by the Navy’s activities. Information Solicited Interested persons may submit information, suggestions, and comments concerning the Navy’s request (see ADDRESSES). NMFS will consider all information, suggestions, and comments related to the request during the development of proposed regulations governing the incidental taking of marine mammals by the Navy, if appropriate. Dated: June 4, 2020. Donna Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–12466 Filed 6–8–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA160] Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Lighthouse Repair and Tour Operations at Northwest Seal Rock, California National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; receipt of application for Letter of Authorization; request for comments and information. AGENCY: NMFS has received a request from the St. George Reef Lighthouse Preservation Society (Society) for authorization to take small numbers of marine mammals incidental to Lighthouse Repair and Tour Operations at Northwest Seal Rock, California over the course of five years from the date of issuance. Pursuant to regulations jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:08 Jun 08, 2020 Jkt 250001 implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is announcing receipt of the Society’s request for the development and implementation of regulations governing the incidental taking of marine mammals. NMFS invites the public to provide information, suggestions, and comments on the Society’s application and request. DATES: Comments and information must be received no later than July 9, 2020. ADDRESSES: Comments on the applications should be addressed to Jolie Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. Physical comments should be sent to 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 and electronic comments should be sent to ITP.DeJoseph@noaa.gov. Instructions: NMFS is not responsible for comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period. Comments received electronically, including all attachments, must not exceed a 25megabyte file size. Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word or Excel or Adobe PDF file formats only. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted online at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/ national/marine-mammal-protection/ incidental-take-authorizations-researchand-other-activities without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected information. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bonnie DeJoseph, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427–8401. An electronic copy of the Society’s application may be obtained online at: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/ national/marine-mammal-protection/ incidental-take-authorizations-researchand-other-activities. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed above. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) direct the Secretary of Commerce (as delegated to NMFS) 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 PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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 incidental take authorization 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. The MMPA states that the term ‘‘take’’ means to harass, hunt, capture, kill or attempt to harass, hunt, capture, or kill any marine mammal. 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 March 23, 2020, NMFS received a request from the Society for authorization of take of marine mammals incidental to construction activities related to the lighthouse maintenance and preservation project at Northwest Seal Rock (NWSR), Del Norte County, California. We determined the application was adequate and complete on April 16, 2020. The requested regulations would be valid for five years, from November 1, 2020 through October 31, 2025, The Society plans to conduct necessary work, including visiting the islet by helicopter to conduct lighthouse renovations and periodic maintenance on the Station’s optical light system, as well as public tours of the historic lighthouse, to preserve the lighthouse. The proposed action may incidentally expose marine mammals occurring in the vicinity to acoustic and visual stimuli from the following sources: (1) Helicopter landings/takeoffs; (2) noise generated during restoration activities (e.g., E:\FR\FM\09JNN1.SGM 09JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 111 / Tuesday, June 9, 2020 / Notices painting, plastering, welding, and glazing); (3) maintenance activities (e.g., bulb replacement and automation of the light system); and (4) human presence, thereby resulting in behavioral disturbance of pinnipeds. Therefore, the Society requests authorization to incidentally take marine mammals by harassment. To date, NMFS has previously issued nine incidental harassment authorizations (IHAs) to the Society to take marine mammals incidental to the lighthouse maintenance and preservation project at NWSR, Del Norte County, California for the same activities from 2010 to 2019. Previous IHAs, monitoring reports, and related reference materials are available for review at https:// www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/ marine-mammal-protection/incidentaltake-authorizations-research-and-otheractivities). Dated: June 2, 2020. Donna Wieting Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. Specified Activities SUMMARY: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES The Station, listed in the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places, is located on NWSR approximately 7 km offshore of Crescent City, California in the northeast Pacific Ocean. The Station, built in 1892, rises 45.7 meters (m) (150 feet (ft)) above sea level. The structure consists of hundreds of granite blocks topped with a cast iron lantern room and covers much of the surface of the islet. The purpose of the project is to restore the lighthouse, to conduct tours, and to conduct annual and emergency maintenance on the Station’s optical light system. The Society proposes to conduct aircraft operations, lighthouse renovation, and periodic maintenance on the Station’s optical light system on a monthly basis. The Society’s activity will occur on one weekend per month, November through April. California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), harbor seals (Phoca vitulina), Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus) of the eastern U.S. Stock, and northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus) have been observed in the area. [FR Doc. 2020–12400 Filed 6–8–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA224] Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. AGENCY: ACTION: Notice of public meeting. The Caribbean Fishery Management Council (CFMC) will hold the 169th public virtual meeting to address the items contained in the tentative agenda included in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. The 169th CFMC public virtual meeting will be held on June 23–24, 2020. The meeting will be at Eastern Daylight Time. DATES: You may join the 169th CFMC public virtual meeting (via GoToMeeting) from a computer, tablet or smartphone by entering the following address: ADDRESSES: CFMC Virtual Meeting, June 23, 2020 Tuesday, June 23, 2020, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. (GMT–04:00) Please join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. https:// global.gotomeeting.com/join/ 612318693. You can also dial in using your phone: United States: +1 (872) 240–3212, Access Code: 612–318–693. Get the app now and be ready when the meeting starts: https:// global.gotomeeting.com/install/ 612318693. Information Solicited CFMC Virtual Meeting, June 24, 2020 Interested persons may submit information, suggestions, and comments concerning the Society’s request (see ADDRESSES). NMFS will consider all information, suggestions, and comments related to the request during the development of proposed regulations governing the incidental taking of marine mammals by the Society, if appropriate. Wednesday, June 24, 2020, 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m. (GMT–04:00) VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:08 Jun 08, 2020 Jkt 250001 Please join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. https:// global.gotomeeting.com/join/ 511547685. Get the app now and be ready when the meeting starts: https:// global.gotomeeting.com/install/ 511547685. PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 35269 Closed Session (Only for Council Members) Tuesday, June 23, 2020, 4:45 p.m.–5:30 p.m. (GMT–04:00) Please join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. https:// global.gotomeeting.com/join/ 736098021. This closed session webinar is locked with a password, only for Council members. You can also dial in using your phone: United States: +1 (786) 535–3211, Access Code: 736–098– 021. Get the app now and be ready when the meeting starts: https:// global.gotomeeting.com/install/ 736098021. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Miguel Rolo´n, Executive Director, Caribbean Fishery Management Council, 270 Mun˜oz Rivera Avenue, Suite 401, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00918–1903, telephone: (787) 398–3717. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The following items included in the tentative agenda will be discussed: June 23, 2020, 9 a.m.–11 a.m. —Call to Order —Roll Call —Adoption of Agenda —Consideration of 168th Council Meeting Verbatim Transcriptions —Message from the Secretary of Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER)— Rafael A. Machargo Maldonado —Executive Director’s Report 11 a.m.–11:10 a.m. —Break 11:10 a.m.–12 p.m. —Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) Report, Includes Use of Landing Projections and other Data for Stock Assessment and Determination of Management Parameters—Richard Appeldoorn 12 p.m.–1 p.m. —Lunch Break 1 p.m.–1:30 p.m. —Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management Technical Advisory Panel (EBFMTAP) Report—Bill Arnold 1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m. —Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC) Updated Projections for Spiny Lobster for Each Island Platform —Overview of SEDAR 57 Caribbean Spiny Lobster Stock Assessment— Adyan Rios E:\FR\FM\09JNN1.SGM 09JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 111 (Tuesday, June 9, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 35268-35269]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-12400]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XA160]


Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals 
Incidental to Lighthouse Repair and Tour Operations at Northwest Seal 
Rock, California

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

ACTION: Notice; receipt of application for Letter of Authorization; 
request for comments and information.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS has received a request from the St. George Reef 
Lighthouse Preservation Society (Society) for authorization to take 
small numbers of marine mammals incidental to Lighthouse Repair and 
Tour Operations at Northwest Seal Rock, California over the course of 
five years from the date of issuance. Pursuant to regulations 
implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is 
announcing receipt of the Society's request for the development and 
implementation of regulations governing the incidental taking of marine 
mammals. NMFS invites the public to provide information, suggestions, 
and comments on the Society's application and request.

DATES: Comments and information must be received no later than July 9, 
2020.

ADDRESSES: Comments on the applications should be addressed to Jolie 
Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. Physical comments should 
be sent to 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 and 
electronic comments should be sent to [email protected].
    Instructions: NMFS is not responsible for comments sent by any 
other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the 
end of the comment period. Comments received electronically, including 
all attachments, must not exceed a 25-megabyte file size. Attachments 
to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word or Excel or 
Adobe PDF file formats only. All comments received are a part of the 
public record and will generally be posted online at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/marine-mammal-protection/incidental-take-authorizations-research-and-other-activities without change. All 
personal identifying information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily 
submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit 
confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected 
information.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bonnie DeJoseph, Office of Protected 
Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401. An electronic copy of the Society's 
application may be obtained online at: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/marine-mammal-protection/incidental-take-authorizations-research-and-other-activities. In case of problems accessing these 
documents, please call the contact listed above.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) 
direct the Secretary of Commerce (as delegated to NMFS) 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 incidental take authorization 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.
    The MMPA states that the term ``take'' means to harass, hunt, 
capture, kill or attempt to harass, hunt, capture, or kill any marine 
mammal.
    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 March 23, 2020, NMFS received a request from the Society for 
authorization of take of marine mammals incidental to construction 
activities related to the lighthouse maintenance and preservation 
project at Northwest Seal Rock (NWSR), Del Norte County, California. We 
determined the application was adequate and complete on April 16, 2020. 
The requested regulations would be valid for five years, from November 
1, 2020 through October 31, 2025, The Society plans to conduct 
necessary work, including visiting the islet by helicopter to conduct 
lighthouse renovations and periodic maintenance on the Station's 
optical light system, as well as public tours of the historic 
lighthouse, to preserve the lighthouse. The proposed action may 
incidentally expose marine mammals occurring in the vicinity to 
acoustic and visual stimuli from the following sources: (1) Helicopter 
landings/takeoffs; (2) noise generated during restoration activities 
(e.g.,

[[Page 35269]]

painting, plastering, welding, and glazing); (3) maintenance activities 
(e.g., bulb replacement and automation of the light system); and (4) 
human presence, thereby resulting in behavioral disturbance of 
pinnipeds. Therefore, the Society requests authorization to 
incidentally take marine mammals by harassment.
    To date, NMFS has previously issued nine incidental harassment 
authorizations (IHAs) to the Society to take marine mammals incidental 
to the lighthouse maintenance and preservation project at NWSR, Del 
Norte County, California for the same activities from 2010 to 2019. 
Previous IHAs, monitoring reports, and related reference materials are 
available for review at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/marine-mammal-protection/incidental-take-authorizations-research-and-other-activities).

Specified Activities

    The Station, listed in the National Park Service's National 
Register of Historic Places, is located on NWSR approximately 7 km 
offshore of Crescent City, California in the northeast Pacific Ocean. 
The Station, built in 1892, rises 45.7 meters (m) (150 feet (ft)) above 
sea level. The structure consists of hundreds of granite blocks topped 
with a cast iron lantern room and covers much of the surface of the 
islet. The purpose of the project is to restore the lighthouse, to 
conduct tours, and to conduct annual and emergency maintenance on the 
Station's optical light system.
    The Society proposes to conduct aircraft operations, lighthouse 
renovation, and periodic maintenance on the Station's optical light 
system on a monthly basis. The Society's activity will occur on one 
weekend per month, November through April. California sea lions 
(Zalophus californianus), harbor seals (Phoca vitulina), Steller sea 
lions (Eumetopias jubatus) of the eastern U.S. Stock, and northern fur 
seals (Callorhinus ursinus) have been observed in the area.

Information Solicited

    Interested persons may submit information, suggestions, and 
comments concerning the Society's request (see ADDRESSES). NMFS will 
consider all information, suggestions, and comments related to the 
request during the development of proposed regulations governing the 
incidental taking of marine mammals by the Society, if appropriate.

    Dated: June 2, 2020.
Donna Wieting
Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-12400 Filed 6-8-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P