National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration November 2008 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: E8-27031
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will convene a public meeting of the Florida/Alabama Habitat Protection Advisory Panel (AP).
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: E8-27030
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a joint meeting of its Scientific and Statistical Committee, Law Enforcement Advisory Panel, Limited Access Privilege Program (LAPP) Committee, Personnel Committee (Closed Session), Advisory Panel Selection Committee (Closed Session), a meeting of its Standard Operating, Policy and Procedure (SOPPs) Committee, Joint Executive and Finance Committees, Spiny Lobster Committee, Mackerel Committee, Ecosystem-based Management Committee, Snapper Grouper Committee, Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR) Steering Committee, and a meeting of the full Council. The Council will also hold a an informal public question and answer session and may hold a public comment session regarding Interim Rule measures to address overfishing of red snapper if the Council considers an Interim Rule request. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for additional details.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Northeast Fisheries Observer Program Fishermen's Comment Card
Document Number: E8-26872
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Meeting of the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel
Document Number: E8-26854
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS will hold a 2-day Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Advisory Panel (AP) meeting in February 2009. The intent of the meeting is to consider options for the conservation and management of Atlantic HMS. The meeting is open to the public.
Initiation of the Monitor National Marine Sanctuary Management Plan Review: Notice of Public Scoping Meetings
Document Number: E8-26792
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with section 304(e) of the National Marine Sanctuaries Act, as amended (NMSA), NOAA is holding scoping meetings to: 1. Solicit public comments and identify issues on the continued management of the Monitor National Marine Sanctuary; and 2. Help determine the scope of issues to be addressed in the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), if warranted.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Essential Fish Habitat
Document Number: E8-26852
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In order to provide additional opportunities for the public, the Atlantic Regional Fishery Management Councils, the Atlantic and Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commissions, and other interested parties to comment on the Essential Fish Habitat Draft Amendment 1 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP), NMFS is extending the comment period for this action. On September 19, 2008, NMFS published a Notice of Availability (NOA) of a draft environmental impact statement and a fishery management plan amendment. Based on the September 19, 2008, notice, the comment period was scheduled to conclude on November 18, 2008. NMFS is now extending the comment period until December 12, 2008. Comments received by NMFS on the Draft Amendment will be used in the development of Final Amendment 1 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP.
Sea Turtle Conservation; Shrimp Trawling Requirements
Document Number: E8-26850
Type: Rule
Date: 2008-11-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS issues this temporary rule for a period of 30 days, to allow shrimp fishermen to use limited tow times as an alternative to Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) in state waters off of Texas (extending offshore 9 nautical miles from the Texas/Louisiana boundary southward to the boundary shared by Matagorda and Brazoria Counties; approximately 95[deg] 32' W. long.). The previous 30-day variance of the TED requirements was from October 8 through November 7, 2008. This action is necessary because environmental conditions resulting from Hurricane Ike persist on the fishing grounds, preventing some fishermen from using TEDs effectively.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher Processors Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
Document Number: E8-26847
Type: Rule
Date: 2008-11-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher processors using hook-and-line gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2008 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) allocated to catcher processors using hook-and-line gear in the BSAI.
Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee; Public Meeting
Document Number: E8-26811
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-10
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given of a meeting of the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee (Committee) in Monterey, California.
Small Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Low-Energy Marine Geophysical Survey in the Santa Barbara Channel, November 2008
Document Number: E8-26721
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-10
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to the Scripps Institute of Oceanography (SIO), for the take of marine mammals, by Level B harassment only, incidental to conducting a marine seismic survey in the Santa Barbara Channel, California, during November 2008.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska
Document Number: E8-26701
Type: Rule
Date: 2008-11-10
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for groundfish by vessels using trawl gear in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA), except for directed fishing for pollock by vessels using pelagic trawl gear in those portions of the GOA open to directed fishing for pollock. This closure also does not apply to fishing by vessels participating in the cooperative fishery in the Rockfish Pilot Program for the Central GOA. This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2008 Pacific halibut prohibited species catch (PSC) limit specified for vessels using trawl gear in the GOA.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: E8-26576
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-07
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's Outreach group will meet in Anchorage at the North Pacific Research Board office.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Status Review of Southeast Alaska Population of Pacific Herring; Request for Information
Document Number: E8-26543
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We, NMFS, request information, data, and comments pertinent to a risk assessment as part of a status review of the Southeast Alaska population of Pacific herring (Clupea pallasi). On April 11, 2008, we initiated a status review of this herring stock under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). In conducting this status review, we now seek information regarding the stock's population structure and trends, current conditions of its habitat, known and anticipated threats to the viability of the population, and efforts being made to protect the species.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Vessel Monitoring System for Atlantic Highly Migratory Species
Document Number: E8-26490
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Seismic Surveys in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas
Document Number: E8-26269
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) as amended, notification is hereby given that an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take small numbers of marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a marine geophysical program, including deep seismic surveys, on oil and gas lease blocks located on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) waters in the mid- and eastern-Beaufort Sea and in the Northern Chukchi Sea has been issued to Shell Offshore, Inc. (SOI) and WesternGeco.
National Estuarine Research Reserve System
Document Number: E8-26338
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-05
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that the Estuarine Reserves Division, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Commerce is announcing a thirty day public comment period on the Chesapeake Bay Virginia National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan Revision. Four sites along the York River comprise the Chesapeake Bay Virginia National Estuarine Research Reserve; Sweet Hall Marsh, Taskinas Creek, the Catlett Islands, and the Goodwin Islands. The fours sites were designated as the Chesapeake Bay Virginia National Estuarine Research Reserve in 1991 pursuant to Section 315 of the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended, 16 U.S.C. 1461. The reserve has been operating in partnership with the Virginia Institute of Marine Science under a management plan approved in 1991. Pursuant to 15 CFR section 921.33(c), a state must revise their management plan every five years. The submission of this plan fulfills this requirement and sets a course for successful implementation of the goals and objectives of the reserve. A boundary expansion, a revised geographic vision for the reserve, new facilities, and updated programmatic objectives are notable revisions to the 1991 approved management plan. The revised management plan outlines the administrative structure; the education, stewardship, and research goals of the reserve; and the plans for future land acquisition and facility development to support reserve operations. This management plan describes how the strengths of the reserve will focus on four areas relevant to the Chesapeake Bay: functions and linkages of land-margin ecosystems; ecosystem vulnerability to climate and human-induced stressors; water quality and aquatic stressors; and integrated ocean observing systems. Since 1991, the reserve has added a coastal training program that delivers science-based information to key decision makers in the Chesapeake Bay; has completed a site profile that characterizes the reserve; and has expanded the monitoring, stewardship and education programs significantly. A new administrative building (2003) and a new science and education lab (2005) have been built to support the growth of reserve programs. With the approval of this management plan, the Chesapeake Bay Virginia National Estuarine Research Reserve will change their total acreage from 2,849 acres to a new total of 2,705 acres. This change is attributable to boundary modifications at two of the reserve sites. At Sweet Hall Marsh, 189 acres of reserve property are being removed from the reserve boundary due to a change in ownership. At the Taskinas Creek site, 44.5 acres are being added to the reserve boundary to provide a deciduous and hardwood forest buffer to protect the estuarine areas used for research and education. The 1991 Management Plan proposed a multi-phased expansion of the reserve that started with the four sites on the York River and planned to incorporate over 20 sites throughout Virginia to ensure adequate representation of Virginian estuarine areas important to the Chesapeake Bay. This expansion has not occurred since 1991. Due to the anticipated logistical, economic, and programmatic difficulties of having over 20 sites administered as part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve, the 2008 Management Plan focuses on the York River for the next five years.
Federal Consistency Appeal by Foothill/Eastern Transportation Corridor Agency and Its Board of Directors
Document Number: E8-26280
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-04
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This announcement provides notice that the decision record has been closed for an administrative appeal filed with the Department of Commerce by Foothill/Eastern Transportation Corridor Agency and its Board of Directors (collectively, TCA).
Sea Turtle Conservation; Shrimp Trawling Requirements
Document Number: E8-26159
Type: Rule
Date: 2008-11-03
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS issues this temporary rule for a period of 30 days, to allow shrimp fishermen to use limited tow times as an alternative to Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) in state and Federal waters off Louisiana from the western end of Timbalier Island (approximately 90[deg] 33' W. long.) eastward to the Plaquemines/Jefferson Parish line (approximately 89[deg] 54' W. long.), and extending offshore 15 nautical miles. The previous 30-day exemption from TED requirements was effective September 26 through October 26, 2008. This action is necessary because environmental conditions resulting from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike persist on the fishing grounds, preventing some fishermen from using TEDs effectively.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS); Atlantic Shark Management Measures; Research Fishery
Document Number: E8-26156
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-03
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces its request for applications for the 2009 shark research fishery from commercial shark fishermen with a directed or incidental permit. The shark research fishery allows for the collection of fishery-dependent data for future stock assessments while also allowing NMFS and commercial fishermen to conduct cooperative research to meet the shark research objectives for the Agency. The only commercial vessels authorized to land sandbar sharks are those participating in the shark research fishery. Shark research fishery permittees may also land non-sandbar large coastal sharks (LCS), small coastal sharks (SCS), and pelagic sharks. Commercial vessels not participating in the shark research fishery may only land non-sandbar LCS, SCS, and pelagic sharks. Commercial shark fishermen who are interested in participating in the shark research fishery need to submit a completed Shark Research Fishery Permit Application in order to be considered. Generally, these permits will be valid through December 31, 2009, unless otherwise specified, subject to the terms and conditions of individual permits.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Proposed Rulemaking to Designate Critical Habitat for the Threatened Southern Distinct Population Segment of North American Green Sturgeon
Document Number: E8-26155
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2008-11-03
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice extends for 45 days the public comment period on a proposed rule to designate critical habitat for the threatened Southern Distinct Population Segment of North American green sturgeon, as published on September 8, 2008, and corrected on October 7, 2008.
Notification of U.S. Fish Quotas and an Effort Allocation in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Regulatory Area
Document Number: E8-26154
Type: Notice
Date: 2008-11-03
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that fish quotas and an effort allocation are available for harvest by U.S. fishermen in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Regulatory Area. This action is necessary to make available to U.S. fishermen a fishing privilege on an equitable basis.