Marine Mammals; File No. 15537
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announces the availability of the Environmental Assessment (EA) prepared in response to a public display permit application received from the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies (IMMS), P.O. Box 207, Gulfport, MS 39502 (Dr. Moby Solangi, Responsible Party).
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pollock in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for pollock in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2011 total allowable catch (TAC) of pollock in the West Yakutat District of the GOA.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will host a meeting of the Council Coordination Committee in Charleston, SC. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Amendment 15 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan
NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 15 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan (FMP), which was developed by the New England Fishery Management Council (Council). The Council submitted Amendment 15, incorporating the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA), for review by the Secretary of Commerce. NMFS has also published a Notice of Availability requesting comments from the public on Amendment 15 pursuant to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA). Amendment 15 was developed primarily to implement annual catch limits (ACLs) and accountability measures (AMs) to bring the Scallop FMP into compliance with requirements of the MSA as reauthorized in 2007. Amendment 15 includes additional measures recommended by the Council, including: A revision of the overfishing definition (OFD); modification of the essential fish habitat (EFH) closed areas under the Scallop FMP; adjustments to measures for the Limited Access General Category (LAGC) fishery; adjustments to the scallop research set-aside (RSA) program; and additions to the list of measures that can be adjusted by framework adjustments.
Endangered and Threatened Species: Designation of Critical Habitat for Cook Inlet Beluga Whale
We, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), designate critical habitat for the Cook Inlet beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas) distinct population segment (DPS) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Two areas are designated, comprising 7,800 square kilometers (3,013 square miles) of marine habitat. In developing this final rule we considered public and peer review comments, as well as economic impacts and impacts to national security. We have decided in the final rule to exclude the Port of Anchorage (POA) in consideration of national security interest. Additionally, consistent with the proposed rule, portions of military lands were determined to be ineligible for designation as critical habitat. We solicited comments from the public on all aspects of the proposed rule, and conducted four public hearings on the action. Along with the proposed rule, we published a draft economic impacts analysis, entitled ``Draft RIR/4(b)(2) Preparatory Assessment/IFRA for the Critical Habitat Designation of Cook Inlet Beluga Whale.'' This economic analysis has been completed to support the final designation. See ``Final RIR/4(b)(2) Preparatory Assessment/ FRFA for the Critical Habitat Designation of Cook Inlet Beluga Whale'' for a discussion of these topics.