Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Army Corps of Engineers Debris Dock Replacement Project, Sausalito, California, 73261-73262 [2021-27991]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 245 / Monday, December 27, 2021 / Notices Public Comment Public comment letters will be accepted and should be submitted electronically to https:// meetings.npfmc.org/Meeting/Details/ 2481. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: December 21, 2021. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–28012 Filed 12–23–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P Background DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XB663] Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Army Corps of Engineers Debris Dock Replacement Project, Sausalito, California National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of incidental harassment authorization. AGENCY: NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) for the re-issuance of a previously issued incidental harassment authorization (IHA) with the only change being effective dates. The initial IHA authorized take of seven species of marine mammals, by Level A and Level B harassment, incidental to construction associated with the Debris Dock Replacement Project in Sausalito, California. The project has been delayed and none of the work covered in the initial IHA has been conducted. The initial IHA was effective from September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022. The ACOE has requested reissuance with new effective dates of January 5, 2022 through January 4, 2023. The scope of the activities and anticipated effects remain the same, authorized take numbers are not changed, and the required mitigation, monitoring, and reporting remains the same as included in the initial IHA. NMFS is, therefore, issuing a second identical IHA to cover the incidental take analyzed and authorized in the initial IHA. DATES: This authorization is effective from January 5, 2022 through January 4, 2023. ADDRESSES: An electronic copy of the final 2021 IHA previously issued to the khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:11 Dec 23, 2021 Jkt 256001 ACOE, the ACOE’s application, and the Federal Register notices proposing and issuing the initial IHA may be obtained by visiting /www.fisheries.noaa.gov/ action/incidental-take-authorizationarmy-corps-engineers-debris-dockreplacement-project-sausalito. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed below (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dwayne Meadows, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (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 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. 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). PO 00000 Frm 00025 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 73261 Summary of Request On July 14, 2021, NMFS published final notice of our issuance of an IHA authorizing take of marine mammals incidental to the Debris Dock Replacement project (86 FR 37124). The effective dates of that IHA were September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022. On December 14, 2021, the ACOE informed NMFS that the project was delayed. None of the work identified in the initial IHA (e.g., pile driving and removal) has occurred. The ACOE submitted a request that we reissue an identical IHA that would be effective from January 5, 2022 through January 4, 2023, in order to conduct the construction work that was analyzed and authorized through the previously issued IHA. Therefore, re-issuance of the IHA is appropriate. Summary of Specified Activity and Anticipated Impacts The planned activities (including mitigation, monitoring, and reporting), authorized incidental take, and anticipated impacts on the affected stocks are the same as those analyzed and authorized through the previously issued IHA. The purpose of the ACOE’s construction project is to replace the existing decaying dock and other onshore infrastructure used to move marine debris collected from San Francisco Bay onto land for disposal. The location, timing, and nature of the activities, including the types of equipment planned for use, are identical to those described in the initial IHA. The mitigation and monitoring are also as prescribed in the initial IHA. Species that are expected to be taken by the planned activity include harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), harbor seal (Phoca vitulina), gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus), bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), northern fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus), and northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris). A description of the methods and inputs used to estimate take anticipated to occur and, ultimately, the take that was authorized is found in the previous documents referenced above. The data inputs and methods of estimating take are identical to those used in the initial IHA. NMFS has reviewed recent Stock Assessment Reports, information on relevant Unusual Mortality Events, and recent scientific literature, and determined that no new information affects our original analysis of impacts or take estimate under the initial IHA. E:\FR\FM\27DEN1.SGM 27DEN1 73262 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 245 / Monday, December 27, 2021 / Notices We refer to the documents related to the previously issued IHA, which include the Federal Register notice of the issuance of the initial 2021 IHA for the ACOE’s construction work (86 FR 37124), the ACOE’s application, the Federal Register notice of the proposed IHA (86 FR 28768), and all associated references and documents. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES Determinations The ACOE will conduct activities as analyzed in the initial 2021 IHA. As described above, the number of authorized takes of the same species and stocks of marine mammals are identical to the numbers that were found to meet the negligible impact and small numbers standards and authorized under the initial IHA and no new information has emerged that would change those findings. The re-issued 2022 IHA includes identical required mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures as the initial IHA, and there is no new information suggesting that our analysis or findings should change. Based on the information contained here and in the referenced documents, NMFS has determined the following: (1) The required mitigation measures will effect the least practicable impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat; (2) the authorized takes will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks; (3) the authorized takes represent small numbers of marine mammals relative to the affected stock abundances; and (4) the ACOE’s activities will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on taking for subsistence purposes as no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals are implicated by this action. National Environmental Policy Act To comply with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and NOAA Administrative Order (NAO) 216–6A, NMFS must review our proposed action with respect to environmental consequences on the human environment. Accordingly, NMFS has determined that the issuance of the IHA qualifies to be categorically excluded from further NEPA review. This action is consistent with categories of activities identified in CE B4 of the Companion Manual for NOAA Administrative Order 216–6A, which do not individually or cumulatively have the potential for significant impacts on the quality of the human environment and for which we have not identified any extraordinary circumstances that would preclude this categorical exclusion. VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:11 Dec 23, 2021 Jkt 256001 Endangered Species Act (ESA) Section 7(a)(2) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA: 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) requires that each Federal agency insure that any action it authorizes, funds, or carries out is not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any endangered or threatened species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of designated critical habitat. To ensure ESA compliance for the issuance of IHAs, NMFS consults internally whenever we propose to authorize take for endangered or threatened species. However, no incidental take of ESAlisted species is authorized or expected to result from this activity. Therefore, NMFS has determined that formal consultation under section 7 of the ESA is not required for this action. Authorization NMFS has issued an IHA to the ACOE for in-water construction activities associated with the specified activity from January 5, 2022 through January 4, 2023. All previously described mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements from the initial 2021 IHA are incorporated. Dated: December 21, 2021. Kimberly Damon-Randall, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–27991 Filed 12–23–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XB676] North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of a hybrid public meeting. AGENCY: The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Crab Plan Team will meet January 10, 2022, through January 14, 2022. DATES: The meeting will be held on Monday, January 10, 2022, from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, January 11, 2022 through Thursday, January 13, 2022 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Friday, January 14, 2022, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., Alaska Time. ADDRESSES: The meeting will be a hybrid meeting. Attend in-person at the SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00026 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Anchorage Hilton Hotel, 500 W 3rd Ave., Anchorage, AK 99501 or join online through the link at https:// meetings.npfmc.org/Meeting/Details/ 2733. Council address: North Pacific Fishery Management Council, 1007 W 3rd Ave., Anchorage, AK 99501–2252; telephone: (907) 271–2809. Instructions for attending the meeting via video conference are given under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION, below. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Diana Stram, Council staff; phone; (907) 271–2809; email: diana.stram@ noaa.gov. For technical support please contact our admin Council staff, email: npfmc.admin@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Agenda January 10, 2022, through Friday, January 14, 2022 The agenda will include: (a) Survey updates for Bristol Bay Red King Crab (BBRKC) resampling; (b) economic stock assessment and fishery evaluation (SAFE); (c) Norton Sound Red King Crab (NSRKC) final assessment and stock status; (d) Alaska Climate Integrated Modeling (ACLIM) management scenarios for Bering Sea stocks; (e) ecological and socioeconomic profile (ESP) update on snow crab indicator development; (f) snow crab collapse hypotheses and analyses; (g) snow crab rebuilding discussion; (h) Aleutian Island Golden King Crab (AIGKC) model explorations; (i) alternatives to mature male biomass (MMB); (j) stock assessment terms of reference (TOR); (k) risk table future direction; (l) Bering Sea Fisheries Research Foundation (BSFRF) update; (m) modeling workshop and (n) other business. The agenda is subject to change, and the latest version will be posted at https://meetings.npfmc.org/ Meeting/Details/2733 prior to the meeting, along with meeting materials. Connection Information You can attend the meeting online using a computer, tablet, or smart phone, or by phone only. Connection information will be posted online at: https://meetings.npfmc.org/Meeting/ Details/2733. If you are attending the meeting in-person, please note that all attendees will be required to wear a mask. Public Comment Public comment letters will be accepted and should be submitted electronically to https:// meetings.npfmc.org/Meeting/Details/ 2733. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. E:\FR\FM\27DEN1.SGM 27DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 245 (Monday, December 27, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 73261-73262]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-27991]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XB663]


Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; 
Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Army Corps of Engineers Debris Dock 
Replacement Project, Sausalito, California

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

ACTION: Notice; issuance of incidental harassment authorization.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers (ACOE) for the re-issuance of a previously issued incidental 
harassment authorization (IHA) with the only change being effective 
dates. The initial IHA authorized take of seven species of marine 
mammals, by Level A and Level B harassment, incidental to construction 
associated with the Debris Dock Replacement Project in Sausalito, 
California. The project has been delayed and none of the work covered 
in the initial IHA has been conducted. The initial IHA was effective 
from September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022. The ACOE has requested 
re-issuance with new effective dates of January 5, 2022 through January 
4, 2023. The scope of the activities and anticipated effects remain the 
same, authorized take numbers are not changed, and the required 
mitigation, monitoring, and reporting remains the same as included in 
the initial IHA. NMFS is, therefore, issuing a second identical IHA to 
cover the incidental take analyzed and authorized in the initial IHA.

DATES: This authorization is effective from January 5, 2022 through 
January 4, 2023.

ADDRESSES: An electronic copy of the final 2021 IHA previously issued 
to the ACOE, the ACOE's application, and the Federal Register notices 
proposing and issuing the initial IHA may be obtained by visiting /
www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/incidental-take-authorization-army-corps-engineers-debris-dock-replacement-project-sausalito. In case of 
problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed 
below (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT).

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

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act 
(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 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.
    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 July 14, 2021, NMFS published final notice of our issuance of an 
IHA authorizing take of marine mammals incidental to the Debris Dock 
Replacement project (86 FR 37124). The effective dates of that IHA were 
September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022. On December 14, 2021, the 
ACOE informed NMFS that the project was delayed. None of the work 
identified in the initial IHA (e.g., pile driving and removal) has 
occurred. The ACOE submitted a request that we reissue an identical IHA 
that would be effective from January 5, 2022 through January 4, 2023, 
in order to conduct the construction work that was analyzed and 
authorized through the previously issued IHA. Therefore, re-issuance of 
the IHA is appropriate.

Summary of Specified Activity and Anticipated Impacts

    The planned activities (including mitigation, monitoring, and 
reporting), authorized incidental take, and anticipated impacts on the 
affected stocks are the same as those analyzed and authorized through 
the previously issued IHA.
    The purpose of the ACOE's construction project is to replace the 
existing decaying dock and other onshore infrastructure used to move 
marine debris collected from San Francisco Bay onto land for disposal. 
The location, timing, and nature of the activities, including the types 
of equipment planned for use, are identical to those described in the 
initial IHA. The mitigation and monitoring are also as prescribed in 
the initial IHA.
    Species that are expected to be taken by the planned activity 
include harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), harbor seal (Phoca 
vitulina), gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus), bottlenose dolphin 
(Tursiops truncatus), California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), 
northern fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus), and northern elephant seal 
(Mirounga angustirostris). A description of the methods and inputs used 
to estimate take anticipated to occur and, ultimately, the take that 
was authorized is found in the previous documents referenced above. The 
data inputs and methods of estimating take are identical to those used 
in the initial IHA. NMFS has reviewed recent Stock Assessment Reports, 
information on relevant Unusual Mortality Events, and recent scientific 
literature, and determined that no new information affects our original 
analysis of impacts or take estimate under the initial IHA.

[[Page 73262]]

    We refer to the documents related to the previously issued IHA, 
which include the Federal Register notice of the issuance of the 
initial 2021 IHA for the ACOE's construction work (86 FR 37124), the 
ACOE's application, the Federal Register notice of the proposed IHA (86 
FR 28768), and all associated references and documents.

Determinations

    The ACOE will conduct activities as analyzed in the initial 2021 
IHA. As described above, the number of authorized takes of the same 
species and stocks of marine mammals are identical to the numbers that 
were found to meet the negligible impact and small numbers standards 
and authorized under the initial IHA and no new information has emerged 
that would change those findings. The re-issued 2022 IHA includes 
identical required mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures as 
the initial IHA, and there is no new information suggesting that our 
analysis or findings should change.
    Based on the information contained here and in the referenced 
documents, NMFS has determined the following: (1) The required 
mitigation measures will effect the least practicable impact on marine 
mammal species or stocks and their habitat; (2) the authorized takes 
will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or 
stocks; (3) the authorized takes represent small numbers of marine 
mammals relative to the affected stock abundances; and (4) the ACOE's 
activities will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on taking for 
subsistence purposes as no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals 
are implicated by this action.

National Environmental Policy Act

    To comply with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA; 
42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and NOAA Administrative Order (NAO) 216-6A, 
NMFS must review our proposed action with respect to environmental 
consequences on the human environment.
    Accordingly, NMFS has determined that the issuance of the IHA 
qualifies to be categorically excluded from further NEPA review. This 
action is consistent with categories of activities identified in CE B4 
of the Companion Manual for NOAA Administrative Order 216-6A, which do 
not individually or cumulatively have the potential for significant 
impacts on the quality of the human environment and for which we have 
not identified any extraordinary circumstances that would preclude this 
categorical exclusion.

Endangered Species Act (ESA)

    Section 7(a)(2) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA: 16 
U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) requires that each Federal agency insure that any 
action it authorizes, funds, or carries out is not likely to jeopardize 
the continued existence of any endangered or threatened species or 
result in the destruction or adverse modification of designated 
critical habitat. To ensure ESA compliance for the issuance of IHAs, 
NMFS consults internally whenever we propose to authorize take for 
endangered or threatened species.
    However, no incidental take of ESA-listed species is authorized or 
expected to result from this activity. Therefore, NMFS has determined 
that formal consultation under section 7 of the ESA is not required for 
this action.

Authorization

    NMFS has issued an IHA to the ACOE for in-water construction 
activities associated with the specified activity from January 5, 2022 
through January 4, 2023. All previously described mitigation, 
monitoring, and reporting requirements from the initial 2021 IHA are 
incorporated.

    Dated: December 21, 2021.
Kimberly Damon-Randall,
Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-27991 Filed 12-23-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P