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

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Endangered Species; File No. 23861
Document Number: 2020-28228
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) (No. 23861) to Midwest Biodiversity Institute (MBI), pursuant to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973, as amended, for the incidental take of shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum), Gulf of Main Distinct population segment (GOM DPS) Atlantic sturgeon, or the New York Bight (NYB DPS) of Atlantic sturgeon. (A. oxyrinchus) and the GOM DPS Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) associated with the otherwise lawful sampling of non-ESA listed fish in the Lower Kennebec River. The permit is issued for a duration of 10 years.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Greater Atlantic Region Logbook Family of Forms
Document Number: 2020-28217
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed, and continuing information collections, which helps us assess the impact of our information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. The purpose of this notice is to allow for 60 days of public comment preceding submission of the collection to OMB.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Weather Modification Activities Reports
Document Number: 2020-28216
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed, and continuing information collections, which helps us assess the impact of our information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. The purpose of this notice is to allow for 60 days of public comment preceding submission of the collection to OMB.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Inseason Adjustment to the 2021 Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Pollock, Atka Mackerel, and Pacific Cod Total Allowable Catch Amounts
Document Number: 2020-28190
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is adjusting the 2021 total allowable catch (TAC) amounts for the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) pollock, Atka mackerel, and Pacific cod fisheries. This action is necessary because NMFS has determined these TACs are incorrectly specified, and will ensure the BSAI pollock, Atka mackerel, and Pacific cod TACs are the appropriate amounts based on the best available scientific information. This action is consistent with the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; West Coast Region Groundfish Trawl Fishery Monitoring and Catch Accounting Program
Document Number: 2020-28175
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed, and continuing information collections, which helps us assess the impact of our information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. The purpose of this notice is to allow for 60 days of public comment preceding submission of the collection to OMB.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Erickson Residence Marine Access Project in Juneau, Alaska
Document Number: 2020-28170
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from Jim Erickson for the re- issuance of a previously issued incidental harassment authorization 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 Erickson Residence Marine Access Project in Juneau, Alaska. The project has been delayed and none of the work covered in the initial IHA has been conducted. The initial IHA was effective from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. Mr. Erickson has requested re-issuance with new effective dates of January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021. 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.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Ice Roads and Ice Trails Construction and Maintenance Activities on Alaska's North Slope
Document Number: 2020-26346
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-22
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Upon application from Hilcorp Alaska, LLC (Hilcorp) and Eni US Operating Co. Inc. (Eni), NMFS is issuing regulations under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) for the taking of small numbers of marine mammals incidental to ice road and ice trail construction, maintenance, and operation in Alaska's North Slope, over the course of 5 years (2020-2025). These regulations allow NMFS to issue Letters of Authorization (LOA) for the incidental take of marine mammals during the specified construction and maintenance activities carried out during the rule's period of effectiveness, set forth the permissible methods of taking, set forth other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, and set forth requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of the incidental take.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-28073
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Groundfish Management Team (GMT) will hold a week-long work session that is open to the public.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-28072
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The SEDAR 73 assessment of the South Atlantic stock of red snapper will consist of a data scoping webinar, a workshop, and a series of assessment webinars. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-28071
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (Council) Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) will hold a meeting via webinar. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Golden Tilefish Fishery; Final 2021 and Projected 2022 Specifications and Emergency Action
Document Number: 2020-27852
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces final specifications for the 2021 commercial golden tilefish fishery and projected specifications for 2022. This action also implements temporary emergency measures for the golden tilefish fishery at the request of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council. This action establishes allowable harvest levels and other management measures to prevent overfishing while allowing optimum yield, consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Tilefish Fishery Management Plan. The emergency measures allow a limited one-time carryover of up to 5 percent of unharvested fishing quota from the 2020 fishing year into the 2021 fishing year.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass 2021 Specifications
Document Number: 2020-27851
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces 2021 specifications for the summer flounder, scup, and black sea fisheries. The implementing regulations for the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan require us to publish specifications for the upcoming fishing year for each of these species. This action is intended to inform the public of the specifications for the start of the 2021 fishing year for summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to U.S. Navy Construction at Naval Station Norfolk in Norfolk, Virginia
Document Number: 2020-27300
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-12-21
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to construction activities including marine structure maintenance, pile replacement, and select waterfront improvements at Naval Station Norfolk (NAVSTA Norfolk) over the course of five years (2021-2026). As required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is proposing regulations to govern that take, and requests comments on the proposed regulations. NMFS will consider public comments prior to making any final decision on the issuance of the requested MMPA authorization and agency responses will be summarized in the final notice of our decision.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-27974
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast (SONCC) Coho Workgroup (Workgroup) will host an online meeting that is open to the public.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-27973
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Ad Hoc Ecosystem Workgroup (EWG) will hold an online meeting, which is open to the public.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting.
Document Number: 2020-27972
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) will host an online meeting of the Area 2A Pacific halibut governmental management entities, that is open to the public.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2020-27971
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a 3-day meeting via webinar of its Standing, Reef Fish, Mackerel, Socioeconomic and Ecosystem Scientific and Statistical Committees (SSC)
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Ocean Perch in the Bering Sea Subarea of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
Document Number: 2020-27918
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific ocean perch in the Bering Sea subarea of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2020 Pacific Ocean perch total allowable catch (TAC) in the Bering Sea subarea of the BSAI.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; North Pacific Halibut and Sablefish Individual Fishing Quota Cost Recovery Programs
Document Number: 2020-27881
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS publishes the individual fishing quota (IFQ) standard prices and fee percentage for cost recovery for the IFQ Program for the halibut and sablefish fisheries of the North Pacific (IFQ Program). The fee percentage for 2020 is 3.0 percent. This action is intended to provide holders of halibut and sablefish IFQ permits with the 2020 standard prices and fee percentage to calculate the required payment for IFQ cost recovery fees due by January 31, 2021.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone off Alaska; North Pacific Observer Program Standard Ex-Vessel Prices
Document Number: 2020-27824
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS publishes standard ex-vessel prices for groundfish and halibut for the calculation of the observer fee under the North Pacific Observer Program (Observer Program). This notice is intended to provide information to vessel owners, processors, registered buyers, and other Observer Program participants about the standard ex-vessel prices that will be used to calculate the observer fee for landings of groundfish and halibut made in 2021. NMFS will send invoices to processors and registered buyers subject to the fee by January 15, 2022. Fees are due to NMFS on or before February 15, 2022.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
Document Number: 2020-27794
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS closes the Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) General category fishery for the December subquota period, and thus for the remainder of 2020. The intent of this closure is to prevent further overharvest of the adjusted December subquota, and the overall adjusted General category quota.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental To Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Washington State Department of Transportation Purdy Bridge Rehabilitation Project, Pierce County, WA
Document Number: 2020-27787
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the Washington State Department of Transportation (WADOT) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to the Purdy Bridge Rehabilitation Project in Pierce County, WA. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to incidentally take marine mammals during the specified activities. NMFS is also requesting comments on a possible one-year renewal that could be issued under certain circumstances and if all requirements are met, as described in Request for Public Comments at the end of this notice. NMFS will consider public comments prior to making any final decision on the issuance of the requested MMPA authorizations and agency responses will be summarized in the final notice of our decision.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Marine Site Characterization Surveys Off of Coastal Virginia
Document Number: 2020-27761
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued a modified incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to Dominion Energy Virginia (Dominion) to incidentally harass marine mammals incidental to marine site characterization surveys conducted in the areas of the Commercial Lease of Submerged Lands for Renewable Energy Development on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Offshore Virginia (Lease No. OCS-A-0483) as well as in coastal waters where an export cable corridor will be established in support of the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial (CVOW Commercial) Project.
Revisions to Hatchery Programs Included as Part of Pacific Salmon and Steelhead Species Listed Under the Endangered Species Act
Document Number: 2020-26287
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We, NMFS, announce updates to the descriptions of Pacific salmon and steelhead (Oncorhynchus spp.) species that are currently listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA). Updates include the addition or removal of specific hatchery programs, as well as clarifying changes to the names of specific hatchery programs included as part of the listings of certain Pacific salmon and steelhead species. These changes are informed by our most recent ESA 5-year reviews, which were completed in 2016. We are not changing the ESA-listing status of any species under NMFS's jurisdiction, or modifying any critical habitat designation. The updates also include minor changes in terminology to standardize species descriptions.
Interagency Working Group on Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing; Request for Comments
Document Number: 2020-27695
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is seeking public comments on the Work Plan of the Interagency Working Group on Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing. This Interagency Working Group was established under the Maritime Security and Fisheries Enforcement Act.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Regulations for Listing Endangered and Threatened Species and Designating Critical Habitat
Document Number: 2020-27693
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (collectively referred to as the ``Services'' or ``we''), add a definition of ``habitat'' to our regulations that implement section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This rulemaking responds to Supreme Court case law regarding the designation of critical habitat and provides transparency, clarity, and consistency for stakeholders.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Long Beach Cruise Terminal Improvement Project in the Port of Long Beach, California
Document Number: 2020-27675
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the Carnival Corporation & PLC (Carnival) 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 five species of marine mammals, by Level A and Level B harassment, incidental to construction associated with the Port of Long Beach Cruise Terminal Improvement Project in Port of Long Beach, 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 November 19, 2019, through November 18, 2020. Carnival has requested re-issuance with new effective dates of December 10, 2020 through December 9, 2021. 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.
Final Management Plan for the North Carolina National Estuarine Research Reserve
Document Number: 2020-27603
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that the Office for Coastal Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce approves the revised management plan for the North Carolina National Estuarine Research Reserve. In accordance with applicable Federal regulations, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality's Division of Coastal Management revised the reserve's management plan, which replaces the plan previously approved in 2009.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; 2021 Bluefish Specifications
Document Number: 2020-27522
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS issues final specifications for the 2021 Atlantic bluefish fishery. This action is necessary to establish allowable harvest levels to prevent overfishing, consistent with the most recent scientific information, as required by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Atlantic Bluefish Fishery Management Plan. This rule also informs the public of the final fishery specifications for the 2021 fishing year.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Document Number: 2020-27577
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has issued a scientific research permit (Permit 18761-2R) to the University of California, Santa Cruz, under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The research is intended to increase knowledge of black abalone listed under the ESA and to help guide management and conservation efforts.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Omnibus Framework Adjustment To Modify the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's Risk Policy
Document Number: 2020-27562
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS approves and implements changes to the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's Risk Policy. This action is intended to adjust the Council's risk policy by accepting a higher level of risk for stocks at or above biomass targets. These adjustments could lead to increases in catch limits for healthy fisheries managed by the Council.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota Transfer From NC to CT
Document Number: 2020-27561
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is transferring a portion of its 2020 commercial summer flounder quota to the State of Connecticut. This quota adjustment is necessary to comply with the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan quota transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the revised commercial quotas for North Carolina and Connecticut.
Pacific Island Pelagic Fisheries; False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan; New Trigger Value for Southern Exclusion Zone Closure
Document Number: 2020-27548
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 and the False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan, NMFS is publishing a new trigger value for the Southern Exclusion Zone closure. The new trigger is four observed mortality or serious injuries of false killer whales incidental to the deep-set longline fishery within the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; Quota Transfers From MA to NC, DE to RI, and VA to NY
Document Number: 2020-27538
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the State of Delaware, and the Commonwealth of Virginia are transferring a portion of their 2020 commercial bluefish quota to the State of North Carolina, the State of Rhode Island, and the State of New York, respectively. These quota adjustments are necessary to comply with the Atlantic Bluefish Fishery Management Plan quota transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the revised commercial bluefish quotas for Massachusetts, North Carolina, Delaware, Rhode Island, Virginia, and New York.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation of Pacific Cod in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
Document Number: 2020-27526
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amount of Pacific cod from vessels using jig gear and trawl catcher vessels (CVs) to CVs less than 60 feet (18.3 m) length overall (LOA) using hook-and-line or pot gear and American Fisheries Act (AFA) catcher/processors (CPs) in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) management area. This action is necessary to allow the 2020 total allowable catch (TAC) of Pacific cod to be harvested.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the South Quay Wall Recapitalization Project, Mayport, Florida
Document Number: 2020-27503
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the United States Navy (Navy) for the re-issuance of a previously issued incidental harassment authorization (IHA) with the change being a modification to the effective dates. The initial IHA authorizes take of one species of marine mammal, by Level B harassment only, incidental to pile driving associated with the South Quay Wall Recapitalization Project, Naval Station Mayport, Florida. The project has been delayed and none of the work covered in the current IHA has been conducted. The Navy has requested the IHA be re-issued with the following effective dates: January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021. 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. Therefore, NMFS re- issued the IHA.
Schedules for Atlantic Shark Identification Workshops and Protected Species Safe Handling, Release, and Identification Workshops
Document Number: 2020-27501
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the date for the Atlantic Shark Identification workshop originally scheduled for November 12, 2020, in Largo, FL, has been changed. The new date is January 7, 2021. The workshop time and location remain unchanged: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on January 7, 2021, in Largo, FL. Atlantic Shark Identification workshops are mandatory for Atlantic shark dealers. Additional free workshops will be conducted during 2021.
Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Amendment to the Atlantic Pelagic Longline Take Reduction Plan
Document Number: 2020-26288
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-12-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to amend the regulations implementing the Atlantic Pelagic Longline Take Reduction Plan (hereinafter called the PLTRP or the Plan) to reduce mortalities and serious injuries of short- finned pilot whales incidental to the Atlantic pelagic longline fishery to meet the long-term goal of the Plan as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The PLTRP currently contains both regulatory and non-regulatory management measures to reduce mortality and serious injury of pilot whales (Globicephala spp.) and Risso's dolphins (Grampus griseus), in the Atlantic portion of the Category I Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico large pelagics longline fishery (hereinafter called Atlantic pelagic longline fishery). The proposed amendments to the PLTRP are based on consensus recommendations submitted by the Atlantic Pelagic Longline Take Reduction Team (hereinafter called the PLTRT or the Team) and include: Removing the Cape Hatteras Special Research Area and the associated special observer and research participation requirements for fishermen operating in that area, modifying the mainline length restrictions for pelagic longline sets in the U.S. exclusive economic zone (EEZ) portion of the Mid- Atlantic Bight, and implementing required hook and gangion modifications in the EEZ portion of the Florida East Coast, South Atlantic Bight, Mid-Atlantic Bight and Northeast Coastal fishing areas. Furthermore, NMFS is removing Risso's dolphins and long-finned pilot whales from the Plan's scope.
Schedules for Atlantic Shark Identification Workshops and Protected Species Safe Handling, Release, and Identification Workshops
Document Number: 2020-27426
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Free Atlantic Shark Identification Workshops and Safe Handling, Release, and Identification Workshops will be held in January, February, and March of 2021. Certain fishermen and shark dealers are required to attend a workshop to meet regulatory requirements and to maintain valid permits. Specifically, the Atlantic Shark Identification Workshop is mandatory for all federally permitted Atlantic shark dealers. The Safe Handling, Release, and Identification Workshop is mandatory for vessel owners and operators who use bottom longline, pelagic longline, or gillnet gear, and who have also been issued shark or swordfish limited access permits. Additional free workshops will be conducted during 2021 and will be announced in a future notice.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Amendment 21 to the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan
Document Number: 2020-27193
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This action implements approved measures for the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's Amendment 21 to the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan. This rule changes the summer flounder commercial state quota allocation system and fishery management plan goals and objectives. This action is intended to increase equity in state allocations when annual coastwide commercial quotas are at or above historical averages, while recognizing the economic reliance coastal communities have on the state allocation percentages currently in place.
Notice To Suspend Applications for Certification for Printing NOAA Nautical Charts and Publications
Document Number: 2020-27344
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The federal government ceased printing of paper nautical charts in April 2014. Since then, the Office of Coast Survey has successfully transitioned the printing of paper nautical charts to the private sector and, since the Federal Register Notice of January 2, 2014, has certified more than three dozen companies to print and sell NOAA nautical charts and the United States Coast Pilot[supreg]. This transition has resulted in a broad market providing product differentiation with optional value-added features. However, Coast Survey is in the process of reducing the amount of traditional NOAA paper nautical products that it maintains as it moves to facilitating a method from which paper charts can be derived from the NOAA's electronic navigational charts (NOAA ENC[supreg]) found on website: https://nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/charts/ noaa-enc.html. Within the next five years, the number of unique charts that will be available for vendors to print will be reduced by roughly 60%. Coast Survey recognized that a hold on accepting new applications must be put in place until the final number of traditional paper charts that NOAA will maintain is determined. The plan for transitioning away from the traditional NOAA paper charts is available in the ``Sunsetting Traditional NOAA Paper Charts'' document found on the following website: https://nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/publications/docs/raster- sunset.pdf. To maintain a healthy market that meets the needs of recreational and commercial mariners, Coast Survey is suspending the certifications for new, non-certified printers of charts while continuing to maintain certification of printers who continue to meet standards as provided under their current agreements. There are currently eight certified printers of the Coast Pilot. Coast Survey feels the market can bear no more that 10 of these printers. Once there are 10 certified printers of the Coast Pilot, Coast Survey will suspend the certifications for new, non-certified printers of the Coast Pilot.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Naval Base San Diego Pier 6 Replacement Project, San Diego, California
Document Number: 2020-27225
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to the Naval Base San Diego Pier 6 Replacement Project in San Diego, California. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to incidentally take marine mammals during the specified activities. NMFS is also requesting comments on a possible one-year renewal that could be issued under certain circumstances and if all requirements are met, as described in Request for Public Comments at the end of this notice. NMFS will consider public comments prior to making any final decision on the issuance of the requested MMPA authorizations and agency responses will be summarized in the final notice of our decision.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental To Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the U.S. Coast Guard's Base Los Angeles/Long Beach Wharf Expansion Project, Los Angeles, California
Document Number: 2020-27205
Type: Notice
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) as amended, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to the U. S. Coast Guard (Coast Guard) to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during activities associated with the Base Los Angeles/Long Beach Wharf Expansion Project in Los Angeles, California.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries Off West Coast States; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan; Amendment 29; 2021-22 Biennial Specifications and Management Measures
Document Number: 2020-27142
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This final rule establishes the 2021-22 harvest specifications for groundfish taken in the U.S. exclusive economic zone off the coasts of Washington, Oregon, and California, consistent with the Magnuson- Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (PCGFMP). This final rule revises the management measures that are intended to keep the total annual catch of each groundfish stock or stock complex within the annual catch limits. These measures are intended to help prevent overfishing, rebuild overfished stocks, achieve optimum yield, and ensure that management measures are based on the best scientific information available. Additionally, this final rule implements Amendment 29 to the PCGFMP, which designates shortbelly rockfish as an ecosystem component species, and changes the trawl and nontrawl allocations for blackgill rockfish within the southern slope complex south of 40[deg]10' North latitude (N. lat.), petrale sole, lingcod south of 40[deg]10' N lat., and widow rockfish.
Pacific Islands Fisheries; 2020-2023 Annual Catch Limit and Accountability Measures for Hawaii Kona Crab
Document Number: 2020-27126
Type: Rule
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In this final rule, NMFS implements an annual catch limit (ACL) of 30,802 lb (13,972 kg), and an annual catch target (ACT) of 25,491 lb (11,563 kg), of Hawaii Kona crab for fishing years 2020-2023. This rule also implements, as accountability measures (AM), an in- season closure of the fishery if catch is projected to reach the ACT, and a post-season adjustment if catch exceeds the ACL. This action support the long-term sustainability of the Hawaii Kona crab fishery.
Endangered and Threatened Species: Designation of Nonessential Experimental Population of Central Valley Spring-Run Chinook Salmon in the Upper Yuba River Upstream of Englebright Dam, CA
Document Number: 2020-26946
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-12-11
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We, NMFS, propose a rule to designate and authorize the release of a nonessential experimental population (NEP) of Central Valley (CV) spring-run Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in the upper Yuba River and its tributaries upstream of Englebright Dam, California and establish take exceptions for the NEP for particular activities. A draft environmental assessment (EA) has been prepared on this proposed action and is available for comment.