Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Alaska Gasline Development Corporation Liquefied Natural Gas Facilities Construction Project at Cook Inlet, Alaska, 59291-59292 [2020-20691]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 183 / Monday, September 21, 2020 / Notices FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Christopher M. Moore, Ph.D., Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, telephone: (302) 526–5255. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the meeting is to gather Advisory Panel input on analysis related to possible changes to the Illex squid quota. An agenda and any background documents will be posted at the Council’s website (www.mafmc.org) prior to the meeting. Special Accommodations The meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aid should be directed to M. Jan Saunders, (302) 526–5251, at least 5 days prior to any meeting date. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: September 16, 2020. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–20780 Filed 9–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA494] Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Hearings National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of public hearings; request for comments. AGENCY: The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (Commission) will hold seven public hearings via webinar and a written comment period to solicit public comments on a developing management action to consider potential changes to the allocation of the black sea bass commercial quota among the states of Maine through North Carolina. DATES: The webinar hearings will be held between October 8 and 29, 2020. Each hearing will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. EDT. Written comments must be received on or before 11:59 p.m. EST, November 13, 2020. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for more details, including the dates and times for all hearings. ADDRESSES: All hearings will be hosted through GoToWebinar. You must use jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:59 Sep 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 GoToWebinar to speak during the hearings. A listen-only call in option is also available. Participants will not be able to speak through the phone connection. To access any of the webinar hearings, please follow the registration prompts at https://register.gotowebinar.com/rt/ 6029916789664773645. To attend the webinar in listen only mode without the ability to speak, you may dial (562) 247– 8422 and enter access code 412–241– 258. A public hearing document with more information on this action is available at: http://www.mafmc.org/actions/bsbcommercial-allocation. Copies of the document are also available by request from Dr. Chris Moore, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 800 N. State Street, Suite 201, Dover, DE 19901; telephone: (302) 674–2331. Public comments: Written comments may be sent by any of the following methods: • Email to: comments@asmfc.org (subject: Draft Addendum XXXIII). • Via webform at: https:// www.mafmc.org/comments/bsballocation. • Mail to: Caitlin Starks, FMP Coordinator, Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, 1050 North Highland Street, Suite 200 A–N, Arlington, VA 22201. Mark the outside of the envelope ‘‘Draft Addendum XXXIII.’’ • Fax to: 703–842–0741 (subject: Draft Addendum XXXIII) FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Christopher M. Moore, Ph.D., Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, telephone: (302) 526–5255. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Council and the Commission are developing a joint action to consider adjusting the allocations of the black sea bass commercial quota among states. These allocations were loosely based on landings data from 1980–2001. They were first implemented in 2003 and have not been modified since that time. They are currently included only in the Commission’s fishery management plan and are not jointly managed with the Council. This joint action will consider whether modifications to these allocations should be made to account for changes in black sea bass distribution and abundance over time, as well as other considerations. It will also consider whether the allocations should be added to the Council’s Fishery Management Plan. Additional information on this action is available at: http://www.mafmc.org/ actions/bsb-commercial-allocation. PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 59291 The dates and times of the seven webinar hearings are listed below. You are encouraged to participate in the hearing for your state or region; however, all hearings are open to all individuals. 1. Virginia: Thursday, October 8, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 2. North Carolina: Tuesday, October 13, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 3. Delaware and Maryland: Wednesday, October 14, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 4. Connecticut and New York: Thursday, October 15, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 5. New Jersey: Tuesday, October 27, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 6. Rhode Island: Wednesday, October 28, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. 7. Massachusetts: Thursday, October 29, 2020; 6–8 p.m. EDT. Special Accommodations These hearings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to M. Jan Saunders at the Mid-Atlantic Council Office (302) 526–5251 at least 5 days prior to the hearing date. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: September 16, 2020. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–20779 Filed 9–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA476] Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Alaska Gasline Development Corporation Liquefied Natural Gas Facilities Construction Project at Cook Inlet, Alaska National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of issuance of Letter of Authorization. AGENCY: 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 Alaska Gasline Development SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\21SEN1.SGM 21SEN1 59292 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 183 / Monday, September 21, 2020 / Notices Corporation (AGDC) for the take of marine mammals incidental to Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facilities construction project in Cook Inlet, Alaska. This Letter of Authorization is effective from January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2025. ADDRESSES: The LOA and supporting documentation is available online at: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/permit/ incidental-take-authorizations-undermarine-mammal-protection-act. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed below. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shane Guan, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DATES: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Background Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) 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). VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:59 Sep 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 Summary of Request On June 28, 2019, NMFS published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register, requesting comments and information related to AGDC’s request for thirty days (84 FR 30991). The final rule was published in the Federal Register on August 17, 2020 (85 FR 50720). 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 the LNG facilities constructions in Cook Inlet, Alaska. The purpose of the project is to construct LNG onshore facilities between the Beluga Landing shoreline crossing and the Yentna River on both shores of the Cook Inlet to load LNG carriers for export. The project would require pile installation using impact and vibratory pile driving, and pipe laying in the Inlet. Authorization We have issued an LOA to AGDC authorizing the take of marine mammals incidental to LNG facilities construction activities as described above. Take of marine mammals will be minimized through implementation of the following mitigation measures: (1) Implementing time/area restriction to minimize potential noise exposure to Cook Inlet beluga whales in the Susitna River Delta; (2) Implementing exclusion zones for all in-water construction activities to prevent or reduce Level A harassment for all marine mammals and to prevent Level B harassment for Cook Inlet beluga whales; (3) Employing protected species observers (PSOs) to monitor exclusion zones before, during, and after the in-water construction activities to ensure that no marine mammal is within the exclusion zone during the activities; (4) Implementing soft start for impact pile driving; and (5) Deploying air bubble curtains to attenuate noise from in-water pile driving. Based on these findings and the information discussed in the preamble to the final rule, the activities described under the LOA 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: September 15, 2020. Donna S. Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–20691 Filed 9–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA490] Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of public meeting. AGENCY: The Caribbean Fishery Management Council’s (Council) District Advisory Panels (DAPs), the Outreach and Education Advisory Panel (OEAP), and the Liaison Officers, will hold a joint public virtual meeting to address the items contained in the tentative agenda included in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. DATES: The DAPs, OEAP and Liaison Officers joint public virtual meeting will be held on October 7, 2020, from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., Eastern Day Time. ADDRESSES: You may join the DAPs/ OEAP/Liaison Officers joint public virtual meeting (via GoToMeeting) from a computer, tablet or smartphone by entering the following address: Please join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/ 792633909 You can also dial in using your phone. United States: +1 (646) 749–3122. Access Code: 792–633–909. Get the app now and be ready when the meeting starts: https:// global.gotomeeting.com/install/ 792633909. SUMMARY: 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: 1 p.m.–1:10 p.m. —Introduction—Miguel A. Rolo´n 1:10 p.m.–1:30 p.m. —Concepts of Outreach and Education—Alida Ortı´z —Liaison Officers Presentations 1:30 p.m.–1:40 p.m. —Liaison Officer St. Thomas/St. John—Nicole Greaux 1:40 p.m.–1:50 p.m. —Liaison Officer St. Croix—Nikita Charles 1:50 p.m.–2 p.m. —Liaison Officer Puerto Rico— E:\FR\FM\21SEN1.SGM 21SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 183 (Monday, September 21, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 59291-59292]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-20691]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XA476]


Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals 
Incidental to Alaska Gasline Development Corporation Liquefied Natural 
Gas Facilities Construction Project at Cook Inlet, Alaska

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

ACTION: Notice of issuance of Letter of Authorization.

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

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 Alaska 
Gasline Development

[[Page 59292]]

Corporation (AGDC) for the take of marine mammals incidental to 
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facilities construction project in Cook 
Inlet, Alaska.

DATES: This Letter of Authorization is effective from January 1, 2021, 
through December 31, 2025.

ADDRESSES: The LOA and supporting documentation is available online at: 
https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/permit/incidental-take-authorizations-under-marine-mammal-protection-act. In case of problems accessing these 
documents, please call the contact listed below.

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

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 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 June 28, 2019, NMFS published a notice of proposed rulemaking in 
the Federal Register, requesting comments and information related to 
AGDC's request for thirty days (84 FR 30991). The final rule was 
published in the Federal Register on August 17, 2020 (85 FR 50720). 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 the LNG 
facilities constructions in Cook Inlet, Alaska.
    The purpose of the project is to construct LNG onshore facilities 
between the Beluga Landing shoreline crossing and the Yentna River on 
both shores of the Cook Inlet to load LNG carriers for export. The 
project would require pile installation using impact and vibratory pile 
driving, and pipe laying in the Inlet.

Authorization

    We have issued an LOA to AGDC authorizing the take of marine 
mammals incidental to LNG facilities construction activities as 
described above. Take of marine mammals will be minimized through 
implementation of the following mitigation measures: (1) Implementing 
time/area restriction to minimize potential noise exposure to Cook 
Inlet beluga whales in the Susitna River Delta; (2) Implementing 
exclusion zones for all in-water construction activities to prevent or 
reduce Level A harassment for all marine mammals and to prevent Level B 
harassment for Cook Inlet beluga whales; (3) Employing protected 
species observers (PSOs) to monitor exclusion zones before, during, and 
after the in-water construction activities to ensure that no marine 
mammal is within the exclusion zone during the activities; (4) 
Implementing soft start for impact pile driving; and (5) Deploying air 
bubble curtains to attenuate noise from in-water pile driving.
    Based on these findings and the information discussed in the 
preamble to the final rule, the activities described under the LOA 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: September 15, 2020.
Donna S. Wieting,
Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-20691 Filed 9-18-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P