Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permit, 67518-67519 [2020-23537]

Download as PDF 67518 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 206 / Friday, October 23, 2020 / Notices DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA502] Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permit National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS has determined that twenty exempted fishing permit (EFP) applications warrant further consideration and is requesting public comment on the applications. All EFP applicants request an exemption from a single prohibition (the use of unauthorized gear to harvest highly migratory species (HMS)) under the Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (HMS FMP) to test the effects and efficacy of using deep-set buoy gear (DSBG), and/or deep-set linked buoy gear (DSLBG), and/or night-set buoy gear (NSBG) to harvest swordfish and other HMS off of the U.S. West Coast. DATES: Comments must be submitted in writing by November 23, 2020. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA– NMFS–2020–0135, by any of the following methods: • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20200135, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. EFP applications will be available under Relevant Documents through the same link. • Mail: Attn: Chris Fanning, NMFS West Coast Region, 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802. Include the identifier ‘‘NOAA–NMFS– 2020–0135’’ in the comments. • Email: wcr.hms@noaa.gov. Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:09 Oct 22, 2020 Jkt 253001 individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/ A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chris Fanning, NMFS, West Coast Region, 562–980–4198. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DSBG fishing trials have occurred for the past 10 years (2011–2015, research years; 2015–2020, EFP years) in the U.S. West Coast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) off California. The data collected from this fishing activity have demonstrated DSBG to achieve about a 95 percent marketable catch composition. Nonmarketable catch rates have remained low and all non-marketable catch were released alive. Due to DSBG being actively tended, strikes are capable of being detected within minutes of a hooking on the line; as a result, all catches can be tended quickly, with catch brought to the vessel in good condition. To date, DSBG has had five interactions with protected species, four Northern elephant seals and one loggerhead sea turtle, which were not seriously injured and were released alive due to the quick strike detection of the gear. Northern Elephant seals are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and loggerhead sea turtles are protected by the Endangered Species Act. DSLBG trials have produced similar data to DSBG activities. Swordfish and other marketable species have represented about 90 percent of the catch. Non-marketable species are released alive due to DSLBG quick strike detection and active gear tending. To date, there have been no interactions with protected species using DSLBG. One vessel began fishing with NSBG in 2020. Data from this gear type are not yet available. PO 00000 Frm 00011 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 At its September 2020 meeting, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) received twenty additional applications for EFPs in time for review and recommended that NMFS issue these EFPs to authorize use of DSBG and/or DSLBG (see Table 1). Council recommendations can be found on the September 2020 meeting Decision Document here, https:// www.pcouncil.org/documents/2020/09/ september-2020-decision-summarydocument.pdf/. The Council reviewed twenty DSBG EFP applications and recommended for issuance by NMFS nineteen of the applications. The application that was not recommended was for three vessels to fish NSBG. Also, two applications included NSBG in addition to other DSBG fishing, and the Council did not recommend the NSBG portions. Four applications in total proposed using NSBG, but the Council did not recommend additional NSBG EFPs until data from the one previously-approved (September 2019) NSBG EFP becomes available in 2021. The Council did recommend that the previouslyapproved night fishing EFP be allowed to be fished on another vessel owned by the applicant (application 14 in the table below), but not on both vessels simultaneously. At this time, NMFS is requesting public comment on all twenty EFP applications NMFS will take the Council’s comments into consideration along with public comments on whether or not to issue these EFPs. If all applications were approved, the EFPs would allow, in addition to EFPs previously issued by NMFS, up to twenty three vessels in total to fish, with fourteen vessels with DSBG only, four vessels with DSLBG, and five vessels with NSBG, throughout the duration of each EFP, in the U.S. West Coast EEZ with permitted exemption from the prohibitions of the HMS FMP pertaining to non-authorized gear types. Aside from the exemption described above, vessels fishing under an EFP would be subject to all other regulations implemented in the HMS FMP, including measures to protect sea turtles, marine mammals, and seabirds. E:\FR\FM\23OCN1.SGM 23OCN1 67519 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 206 / Friday, October 23, 2020 / Notices TABLE 1—SUMMARY OF DEEP-SET BUOY GEAR EXEMPTED FISHING PERMIT APPLICATIONS SUBMITTED FOR THE SEPTEMBER 2020 COUNCIL MEETING (https://www.pcouncil.org/documents/2020/08/e-2-attachment-1-summary-of-dsbg-efp-applications-received-for-the-september-2020-councilmeeting.pdf/) E.2 attachment No. Applicant name Number of vessels 2 ..................... 3 ..................... 4 ..................... 5 ..................... 6 ..................... 7 ..................... 8 ..................... 9 ..................... 10 ................... 11 ................... 12 ................... 13 ................... 14 ................... 15 ................... 16 ................... 17 ................... 18 ................... 19 ................... 20 ................... 21 ................... Athens, Tim ...................................................................... Dell, Kevin ........................................................................ Dillman, Todd ................................................................... Eberhardt, James ............................................................. Fischer, Paul .................................................................... Ghio, Romolo ................................................................... Haworth, Nick, Haworth, David ........................................ Herman, Marc .................................................................. Lebeck, Mark .................................................................... Lorton, Arthur, Lorton, J. Anthon ..................................... Medland, Robert, Castenada, James, Clayton, Terry ..... Pack, Troy, Fegerstedt, Ashley ........................................ Perez, Nathan, Carson, Thomas ..................................... Perez, Nathan, Carson, Thomas ..................................... Saraspe, Andres, Saraspe, Charles ................................ Sidielnikov, Andrii ............................................................. Tharp, Nicolas .................................................................. Volaski, Andrew ............................................................... Wallace, Miles .................................................................. Weiser, Steve ................................................................... Fishing method 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 DSLBG DSBG DSBG DSBG DSBG DSLBG NSBG DSLBG DSLBG, NSBG DSLBG DSBG DSBG NSBG DSBG DSBG DSBG DSBG DSLBG DSBG, NSBG DSBG Notes Not recommended. NSBG portion not recommended. Same vessel as #15. Same vessel as #14. NSBG portion not recommended. Fishing Method DSBG—standard deep-set buoy gear, DSLBG—linked deep-set buoy gear, NSBG—night set buoy gear. DSLBG vessels can also use standard deep-set buoy gear. NMFS will consider all public comments submitted in response to this Federal Register notice prior to issuance of any EFP. Additionally, NMFS has analyzed the effects of issuing DSBG and DSLBG EFPs, and would analyze issuing additional NSBG EFPs in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and NOAA’s Administrative Order 216–6, as well as for compliance with other applicable laws, including Section 7(a)(2) of the Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), which requires the agency to consider whether the proposed action is likely to jeopardize the continued existence and recovery of any endangered or threatened species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of critical habitat. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: October 16, 2020. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2020–23537 Filed 10–22–20; 8:45 am] khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES BILLING CODE 3510–22–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:09 Oct 22, 2020 Jkt 253001 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XA406] Aquaculture Opportunity Areas National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for information. AGENCY: On May 7, 2020, the White House issued an Executive Order (E.O.) on Promoting American Seafood Competitiveness and Economic Growth, which requires the Secretary of Commerce to identify geographic areas containing locations suitable for commercial aquaculture, and complete a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) for each area to assess the impact of siting aquaculture facilities there. NOAA requests that interested parties provide relevant information on the identification of areas within Federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico and off Southern California, south of Point Conception, for the first two Aquaculture Opportunity Areas (AOA) and on what areas NOAA should consider nationally for future AOAs. Please respond to the questions listed in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section, as appropriate. The public input provided in response to this request for SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 information (RFI) will inform NOAA as it works with Federal agencies, appropriate Regional Fishery Management Councils, and in coordination with appropriate State and tribal governments to identify AOAs. DATES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments on or before December 22, 2020. Four webinar-based listening sessions are scheduled. Each will focus on a specific region or national comments, but comments on each topic will be accepted at all meetings: 1. November 5, 2020, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern: National listening session. 2. November 12, 2020, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Pacific: Southern California listening session. 3. November 17, 2020, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern: Gulf of Mexico listening session. 4. November 19, 2020, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern: National listening session. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2020–0118, by the following method: Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20200118, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. Webinar links: Links and toll-free phone numbers for each webinar can be found at: https:// E:\FR\FM\23OCN1.SGM 23OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 206 (Friday, October 23, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 67518-67519]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-23537]



[[Page 67518]]

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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XA502]


Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act; General 
Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing 
Permit

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

ACTION: Notice; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS has determined that twenty exempted fishing permit (EFP) 
applications warrant further consideration and is requesting public 
comment on the applications. All EFP applicants request an exemption 
from a single prohibition (the use of unauthorized gear to harvest 
highly migratory species (HMS)) under the Fishery Management Plan for 
U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (HMS FMP) to 
test the effects and efficacy of using deep-set buoy gear (DSBG), and/
or deep-set linked buoy gear (DSLBG), and/or night-set buoy gear (NSBG) 
to harvest swordfish and other HMS off of the U.S. West Coast.

DATES: Comments must be submitted in writing by November 23, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on this document, identified by 
NOAA-NMFS-2020-0135, by any of the following methods:
     Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to 
www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2020-0135, click the 
``Comment Now!'' icon, complete the required fields, and enter or 
attach your comments. EFP applications will be available under Relevant 
Documents through the same link.
     Mail: Attn: Chris Fanning, NMFS West Coast Region, 501 W. 
Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802. Include the identifier 
``NOAA-NMFS-2020-0135'' in the comments.
     Email: [email protected].
    Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other 
address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, 
may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the 
public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on 
www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying 
information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business 
information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily 
by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous 
comments (enter ``N/A'' in the required fields if you wish to remain 
anonymous).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chris Fanning, NMFS, West Coast 
Region, 562-980-4198.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DSBG fishing trials have occurred for the 
past 10 years (2011-2015, research years; 2015-2020, EFP years) in the 
U.S. West Coast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) off California. The data 
collected from this fishing activity have demonstrated DSBG to achieve 
about a 95 percent marketable catch composition. Non-marketable catch 
rates have remained low and all non-marketable catch were released 
alive. Due to DSBG being actively tended, strikes are capable of being 
detected within minutes of a hooking on the line; as a result, all 
catches can be tended quickly, with catch brought to the vessel in good 
condition. To date, DSBG has had five interactions with protected 
species, four Northern elephant seals and one loggerhead sea turtle, 
which were not seriously injured and were released alive due to the 
quick strike detection of the gear. Northern Elephant seals are 
protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and loggerhead sea 
turtles are protected by the Endangered Species Act.
    DSLBG trials have produced similar data to DSBG activities. 
Swordfish and other marketable species have represented about 90 
percent of the catch. Non-marketable species are released alive due to 
DSLBG quick strike detection and active gear tending. To date, there 
have been no interactions with protected species using DSLBG.
    One vessel began fishing with NSBG in 2020. Data from this gear 
type are not yet available.
    At its September 2020 meeting, the Pacific Fishery Management 
Council (Council) received twenty additional applications for EFPs in 
time for review and recommended that NMFS issue these EFPs to authorize 
use of DSBG and/or DSLBG (see Table 1). Council recommendations can be 
found on the September 2020 meeting Decision Document here, https://www.pcouncil.org/documents/2020/09/september-2020-decision-summary-document.pdf/.
    The Council reviewed twenty DSBG EFP applications and recommended 
for issuance by NMFS nineteen of the applications. The application that 
was not recommended was for three vessels to fish NSBG. Also, two 
applications included NSBG in addition to other DSBG fishing, and the 
Council did not recommend the NSBG portions. Four applications in total 
proposed using NSBG, but the Council did not recommend additional NSBG 
EFPs until data from the one previously-approved (September 2019) NSBG 
EFP becomes available in 2021. The Council did recommend that the 
previously-approved night fishing EFP be allowed to be fished on 
another vessel owned by the applicant (application 14 in the table 
below), but not on both vessels simultaneously.
    At this time, NMFS is requesting public comment on all twenty EFP 
applications NMFS will take the Council's comments into consideration 
along with public comments on whether or not to issue these EFPs. If 
all applications were approved, the EFPs would allow, in addition to 
EFPs previously issued by NMFS, up to twenty three vessels in total to 
fish, with fourteen vessels with DSBG only, four vessels with DSLBG, 
and five vessels with NSBG, throughout the duration of each EFP, in the 
U.S. West Coast EEZ with permitted exemption from the prohibitions of 
the HMS FMP pertaining to non-authorized gear types. Aside from the 
exemption described above, vessels fishing under an EFP would be 
subject to all other regulations implemented in the HMS FMP, including 
measures to protect sea turtles, marine mammals, and seabirds.

[[Page 67519]]



  Table 1--Summary of Deep-Set Buoy Gear Exempted Fishing Permit Applications Submitted for the September 2020
                                                 Council Meeting
 (https://www.pcouncil.org/documents/2020/08/e-2-attachment-1-summary-of-dsbg-efp-applications-received-for-the-september-2020-council-meeting.pdf/)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Number of
   E.2 attachment No.         Applicant name       vessels           Fishing method                Notes
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2.......................  Athens, Tim..........            1  DSLBG
3.......................  Dell, Kevin..........            1  DSBG
4.......................  Dillman, Todd........            1  DSBG
5.......................  Eberhardt, James.....            1  DSBG
6.......................  Fischer, Paul........            1  DSBG
7.......................  Ghio, Romolo.........            1  DSLBG
8.......................  Haworth, Nick,                   3  NSBG                         Not recommended.
                           Haworth, David.
9.......................  Herman, Marc.........            1  DSLBG
10......................  Lebeck, Mark.........            1  DSLBG, NSBG                  NSBG portion not
                                                                                            recommended.
11......................  Lorton, Arthur,                  1  DSLBG
                           Lorton, J. Anthon.
12......................  Medland, Robert,                 2  DSBG
                           Castenada, James,
                           Clayton, Terry.
13......................  Pack, Troy,                      1  DSBG
                           Fegerstedt, Ashley.
14......................  Perez, Nathan,                   1  NSBG                         Same vessel as #15.
                           Carson, Thomas.
15......................  Perez, Nathan,                   1  DSBG                         Same vessel as #14.
                           Carson, Thomas.
16......................  Saraspe, Andres,                 2  DSBG
                           Saraspe, Charles.
17......................  Sidielnikov, Andrii..            1  DSBG
18......................  Tharp, Nicolas.......            1  DSBG
19......................  Volaski, Andrew......            1  DSLBG
20......................  Wallace, Miles.......            1  DSBG, NSBG                   NSBG portion not
                                                                                            recommended.
21......................  Weiser, Steve........            1  DSBG
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fishing Method DSBG--standard deep-set buoy gear, DSLBG--linked deep-set buoy gear, NSBG--night set buoy gear.
  DSLBG vessels can also use standard deep-set buoy gear.

    NMFS will consider all public comments submitted in response to 
this Federal Register notice prior to issuance of any EFP. 
Additionally, NMFS has analyzed the effects of issuing DSBG and DSLBG 
EFPs, and would analyze issuing additional NSBG EFPs in accordance with 
the National Environmental Policy Act and NOAA's Administrative Order 
216-6, as well as for compliance with other applicable laws, including 
Section 7(a)(2) of the Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), 
which requires the agency to consider whether the proposed action is 
likely to jeopardize the continued existence and recovery of any 
endangered or threatened species or result in the destruction or 
adverse modification of critical habitat.

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

    Dated: October 16, 2020.
Jennifer M. Wallace,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-23537 Filed 10-22-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P