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

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Fisheries Off West Coast States; Coastal Pelagic Species Fisheries; Amendment 21 to the Coastal Pelagic Species Fishery Management Plan
Document Number: 2024-03396
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2024-02-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council has submitted Amendment 21 to the Coastal Pelagic Species (CPS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for review by the Secretary of Commerce. If approved, Amendment 21 would make a number of non-substantive, administrative changes to the CPS FMP including defining acronyms upon first use, adding hyperlinks, removing repetitive language, and rearranging sections for clarity and logical sequence. These changes, colloquially referred to as ``housekeeping'' changes, would not change the management of the fishery. This proposed amendment is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the CPS FMP, and other applicable laws. NMFS will consider public comments in deciding whether to approve, disapprove, or partially approve Amendment 21.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska
Document Number: 2024-03370
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for the Pacific cod sideboard limit by non-exempt American Fisheries Act (AFA) catcher vessels in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the annual 2024 Pacific cod sideboard limit established for non-exempt AFA catcher vessels in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA.
Draft Overview of the National Aquaculture Development Plan and Draft Strategic Plan for Aquaculture Economic Development
Document Number: 2024-03345
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
On behalf of the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC)'s Subcommittee on Aquaculture (SCA), NMFS announces the availability of the draft Overview of the National Aquaculture Development Plan (NADP) and draft Strategic Plan for Aquaculture Economic Development (Economic Development Plan) for public comment.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2024-03304
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) and its advisory bodies will meet March 5-11, 2024 in Fresno, CA and via webinar. The Council meeting will be live streamed with the opportunity to provide public comment remotely. The following groups will meet in person in Fresno: Salmon Technical Team, Salmon Advisory Subpanel, Ecosystem Advisory Subpanel, Ecosystem Workgroup, Enforcement Consultants, Habitat Committee, Groundfish Management Team, Groundfish Advisory Subpanel, and the Scientific and Statistical Committee.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) and New England Fishery Management Council (NEFMC); Joint Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-03306
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The MAFMC and NEFMC will jointly hold a public meeting (webinar) of the Spiny Dogfish and Monkfish Advisory Panels to review potential sturgeon bycatch reduction measures. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for agenda details.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the Lutak Dock Replacement Project, Haines, Alaska
Document Number: 2024-03251
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-16
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 Haines Borough to incidentally harass marine mammals during construction activities associated with a Lutak Dock Replacement project in Haines, Alaska.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Prohibition of Commercial Fishing in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument
Document Number: 2024-03247
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This action implements regulations for the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. This action is necessary to conform U.S. fishing regulations to be consistent with Presidential Proclamations 9496 and 10287, which prohibited commercial fishing in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument and directed the Secretaries of Commerce and Interior to promulgate regulations necessary for the proper care and management of the Monument. The measures herein are intended to define the boundary coordinates of the Monument area and clarify the prohibition on commercial fishing in the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) regulations.
List of Fisheries for 2024
Document Number: 2024-03013
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-16
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is publishing its final List of Fisheries (LOF) for 2024, as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The LOF for 2024 reflects new information on interactions between commercial fisheries and marine mammals. NMFS must classify each commercial fishery on the LOF into one of three categories under the MMPA based on the level of mortality and serious injury of marine mammals that occurs incidental to each fishery. The classification of a fishery on the LOF determines whether participants in that fishery are subject to certain provisions of the MMPA, such as those on registration, observer coverage, and take reduction plan (TRP) requirements.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Analysis for Probabilistic and Risk Reduction Decision Support Fire Weather Services
Document Number: 2024-03190
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-15
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.
Space Weather Advisory Group Meeting
Document Number: 2024-03116
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Space Weather Advisory Group (SWAG) will meet for a full day on March 26, 2024.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-03202
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Scallop Plan Team will meet in Alaska.
Fisheries of the Gulf of Mexico; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-03201
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The SEDAR 88 assessment of Gulf of Mexico red grouper will consist of a series of webinars. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2024-03200
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-15
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is conducting six scoping meetings to solicit comments regarding the rang of alternatives to consider in Amendment 10 (A10) to the Atlantic Herring Fishery Management Plan to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). The Council is proposing to take action through A10 to address spatial and temporal allocation and management of Atlantic herring at the management unit level to minimize user conflicts, contribute to optimum yield and support rebuilding of the resource. The Council is also proposing to take action to enhance river herring (alewife and blueback herring) and shad (American shad and hickory shad) avoidance and other catch reduction measures to better support ongoing coastwide restoration efforts for those species. The Council is scheduling the scoping meetings in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the National Environmental Policy Act. A summary of public comments received will be provided to the Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Listing the Queen Conch as Threatened Under the Endangered Species Act (ESA)
Document Number: 2024-02966
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We, NMFS, are listing the queen conch (Aliger gigas, formerly known as Strombus gigas) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). We have completed a review of the status of queen conch, including efforts being made to protect the species, and considered public comments submitted on the proposed listing rule as well as new information received since the publication of the proposed rule. Based on all of this information, we have determined that the queen conch is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but is likely to become so within the foreseeable future. Thus, we are listing the queen conch as a threatened species under the ESA. At this time, we conclude that critical habitat is not yet determinable because data sufficient to perform the required analysis are lacking; any critical habitat designation would be proposed in a separate, future rulemaking.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the Empire Wind Project, Offshore New York
Document Number: 2024-01363
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-14
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 promulgates regulations to govern the incidental taking of marine mammals incidental to Empire Offshore Wind, LLC (Empire Wind), a 50-50 partnership between Equinor, ASA (Equinor) and BP p.l.c., during the construction of an offshore wind energy project (the Project) in Federal and State waters off of New York, specifically within the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Commercial Lease of Submerged Lands for Renewable Energy Development on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Lease Area (OCS-A-512) (referred to as the Lease Area) and along two export cable routes to sea-to-shore transition points (collectively, the Project Area), over the course of 5 years (February 22, 2024, through February 21, 2029). These regulations, which allow for the issuance of a Letter of Authorization (LOA) for the incidental take of marine mammals during specific construction related activities within the Project Area during the effective dates of the regulations, prescribe the permissible methods of taking and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, as well as requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking. Upon publication of this final rule and within 30 days, NMFS will issue a LOA to Empire Wind for the effective period of the final rule.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Greater Atlantic Region Vessel Identification Requirements
Document Number: 2024-03001
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-14
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.
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2024-03070
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-14
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold meetings of the following: Mackerel Cobia Committee, Southeast Data, Assessment and Review (SEDAR) Committee, and Snapper Grouper Committee. The meeting week will also include a formal public comment session and meetings of the Full Council.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Southeast Region Individual Fishing Quota Programs
Document Number: 2024-02968
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-13
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.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings and Hearings
Document Number: 2024-02867
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) has begun its annual preseason management process for the 2024 ocean salmon fisheries. This document announces the anticipated dates and locations of upcoming Pacific Council meetings and public hearings hosted by the Pacific Council. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for more information.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries; Closure of the Angling Category Southern Area Trophy Fishery for 2024
Document Number: 2024-02910
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS closes the Angling category southern area fishery for large medium and giant (``trophy'' (i.e., measuring 73 inches (185 centimeters (cm)) curved fork length or greater)) Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT). The southern area trophy fishery is defined as south of 39[deg]18' N lat., and outside of the Gulf of Mexico. This action applies to Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Angling and HMS Charter/ Headboat permitted vessels when fishing recreationally.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Vessels Using Pot Gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska
Document Number: 2024-02888
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by vessels using pot gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the A season allowance of the 2024 total allowable catch (TAC) of Pacific cod by vessels using pot gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Framework Adjustment 38 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan
Document Number: 2024-02236
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to approve and implement Framework Adjustment 38 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan (FMP) that establishes scallop specifications and other management measures for fishing years 2024 and 2025. Framework 38 would implement measures to protect small scallops to support rotational access area trips to the fleet in future years. This action would also revise regulatory text that is unnecessary, outdated, or unclear. This action is necessary to prevent overfishing and improve both yield-per-recruit and the overall management of the Atlantic sea scallop resource.
Marine Mammals and Endangered Species
Document Number: 2024-02812
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that permits and permit amendments have been issued to the following entities under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), as applicable.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Approved Monitoring Service Providers
Document Number: 2024-02843
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has approved nine companies to provide Northeast multispecies sector at-sea catch monitoring (ASM) and/or electronic catch monitoring (EM) services in fishing year 2024. Regulations implementing the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan require ASM and EM companies to meet service provider performance standards to be approved by NMFS to provide catch monitoring services to sectors. This action approves service providers that sectors may contract with for catch monitoring services for fishing year 2024.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota Transfer From North Carolina to Virginia
Document Number: 2024-02795
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is transferring a portion of its 2024 commercial summer flounder quota to the Commonwealth of Virginia. This adjustment to the 2024 fishing year quota is necessary to comply with the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan (FMP) quota transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the revised 2024 commercial quotas for North Carolina and Virginia.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02823
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Highly Migratory Species Advisory Subpanel (HMSAS) is holding an online meeting.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02821
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public webinar of its Risk Policy Working Group to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). This meeting will be held in-person with a webinar option. Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2024-02820
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Coastal Pelagic Species Management Team (CPSMT) and Coastal Pelagic Species Advisory Subpanel (CPSAS) will hold public meetings.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02819
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Highly Migratory Species Management Team (HMSMT) is holding an online meeting.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; NMFS Observer Programs' Information That Can Be Gathered Only Through Questions; Correction
Document Number: 2024-02756
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
On December 19, 2023, the Department of Commerce, published a 30-day public comment period notice in the Federal Register for an information collection entitled ``NMFS Observer Programs' Information That can be Gathered Only Through Questions.'' This document referenced incomplete information in the Needs and Uses section, and Commerce hereby issues a correction notice as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Pacific Halibut Fisheries of the West Coast; 2024 Catch Sharing Plan and Recreational Fishery Management Measures
Document Number: 2024-02220
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2024-02-09
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to approve changes to the Pacific Halibut Catch Sharing Plan for the International Pacific Halibut Commission's regulatory Area 2A off Washington, Oregon, and California. In addition, NMFS proposes to implement new management measures for the 2024 recreational fisheries in Area 2A that are not implemented through the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC). These measures include the recreational fishery seasons and subarea allocations for Area 2A. This action would also add a new inseason management provision to transfer anticipated uncaught recreational fishery allocation between states. Additionally, this action proposes to establish a new management line at Point Arena, CA, creating two subareas with separate allocations off California. These actions are intended to conserve Pacific halibut and provide angler opportunity where available.
Pacific Island Fisheries; Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodologies
Document Number: 2024-02642
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2024-02-09
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) proposes to amend the five fishery ecosystem plans (FEP) for fisheries in the Pacific Islands Region. If approved, the FEPs would be amended to update data collection mechanisms identified as standardized bycatch reporting methodologies (SBRM) as needed, and revise descriptions of SBRM for consistency with current NMFS regulations. The proposed action considers the best available scientific, commercial, and other information about the fisheries, and supports the long-term sustainability of fishery resources.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Tornado Watch/Warning Post-Event Evaluation
Document Number: 2024-02658
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-09
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; West Coast Region Groundfish Trawl Fishery Monitoring and Catch Accounting Program
Document Number: 2024-02673
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-09
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 Northeastern United States; Monkfish Fishery; 2024 Monkfish Specifications
Document Number: 2024-02677
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-09
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is implementing specifications for the 2024 monkfish fishery. This action is necessary to ensure allowable monkfish harvest levels that will prevent overfishing and allow harvesting of optimum yield. This action is intended to establish the allowable 2024 harvest levels, consistent with the Monkfish Fishery Management Plan and previously announced multi-year specifications.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial Project Offshore of Virginia
Document Number: 2024-02689
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-09
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) as amended, and implementing regulations, notification is hereby given that a Letter of Authorization (LOA) has been issued to the Virginia Electric and Power Company, doing business as Dominion Energy Virginia (Dominion Energy), for the taking of marine mammals incidental to the construction of the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial (CVOW-C) Project (hereafter known as the ``CVOW-C Project'' or the ``Project'').
Regulations Governing the Take of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities
Document Number: 2024-02695
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02617
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Bering Sea Fishery Ecosystem Plan Climate Change Taskforce will meet February 26, 2024.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02616
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a two day in-person meeting of its Standing, Reef Fish, Socioeconomic, and Ecosystem Scientific and Statistical Committees (SSC).
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2024-02615
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Ad Hoc Ecosystem Workgroup (EWG) is holding an online meeting, which is open to the public.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Fishery; 2024 Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Specifications
Document Number: 2024-02516
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is approving specifications for the 2024-2027 Atlantic deep-sea red crab fishery, including the annual catch limits and total allowable landings limits. This action implements the allowable 2024 harvest levels, consistent with the Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Fishery Management Plan. This action is necessary to establish allowable red crab harvest levels that will prevent overfishing.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Atlantic Coastal Migratory Pelagic Fishery; Atlantic Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery; and South Atlantic Snapper-Grouper Fishery; Control Date
Document Number: 2024-02509
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2024-02-08
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This advance notice of proposed rulemaking seeks comment on the benefits or disadvantages of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) potentially setting future restrictions, resulting in subsequent rulemakings from NMFS, in the Atlantic the coastal migratory pelagics fishery and the dolphin and wahoo fishery, and the snapper- grouper fishery in the South Atlantic. The Council recently set a control date of December 8, 2023. That control date, and an existing control date of June 15, 2016, may both be used to create restrictions limiting participation in the exclusive economic zone for the Federal charter vessel/headboat (for-hire) components of the recreational sectors of the coastal migratory pelagics fishery in the Atlantic, dolphin and wahoo fishery in the Atlantic, and snapper-grouper fishery in the South Atlantic. The Council is considering a future action that may affect or limit the number of participants in the fishery, and stresses that participants should locate and preserve all relevant, fishing-related documents. If such an action is developed, approved, and implemented through a Council decision and a subsequent rulemaking by NMFS, future access to the fishery after the control date would not be assured. NMFS is informing the public of the new control date, in part, to promote awareness of the potential changes to eligibility criteria for future access so as to discourage speculative entry into the Federal for-hire components of the Atlantic coastal migratory pelagics, Atlantic dolphin and wahoo, or the South Atlantic snapper- grouper fisheries, while the Council and NMFS consider whether and how access to these for-hire components should be managed.
Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Regulations
Document Number: 2024-02438
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-07
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is amending the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan (Plan) to expand the boundaries of the seasonal Massachusetts Restricted Area (MRA) to include the wedge between State and Federal waters known as the Massachusetts Restricted Area Wedge (MRA Wedge). The MRA Wedge was seasonally closed to trap/pot fishing gear by emergency rulemaking in 2022 and 2023 to prevent the immediate risk to the North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis, right whale) of mortality and serious injury caused by entanglement in fixed-gear buoy lines. Substantial observational evidence has documented the consistent presence of right whales within the MRA Wedge from February through April and aerial surveys have similarly documented the presence of aggregated fixed gear in the MRA Wedge during this same time period. Due to the co-occurrence of whales and buoy lines, both in high densities in this area during the specified times of year, this entanglement risk is expected to recur annually. This action will address this gap in protection between seasonally closed State and Federal waters and reduce the incidental mortality and serious injury of right whales, fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus), and humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) in commercial trap/pot fisheries. There is a specific carve out for this rule in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 (CAA).
Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Marine Mammal Stranding Reports/Marine Mammal Rehabilitation Disposition Report/Human Interaction Data Sheet
Document Number: 2024-02506
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-07
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; Reallocation of Pollock in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands
Document Number: 2024-02493
Type: Rule
Date: 2024-02-07
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amounts of the Aleut Corporation and the Community Development Quota (CDQ) pollock directed fishing allowance (DFA) from the Aleutian Islands subarea to the Bering Sea subarea. This action is necessary to provide the opportunity for the harvest of the 2024 total allowable catch (TAC) of pollock, consistent with the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI).
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental To Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to U.S. Navy 2024 Ice Exercise Activities in the Arctic Ocean
Document Number: 2024-02383
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-06
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. Navy (Navy) to incidentally harass marine mammals during submarine training and testing activities associated with a 2024 Ice Exercise (ICEX24) Activities in the Arctic Ocean.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Document Number: 2024-02253
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has issued two direct take permits pursuant to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) for research and enhancement purposes. Permit 18181-4R was issued to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) for ongoing research, monitoring, and rescue activities in the Sacramento River Basin, Central Valley, California. Permit 21477-2R was issued to FISHBIO, Inc. (FISHBIO) for activities associated with the Stanislaus Native Fish Plan.
Marine Mammals; File Nos. 27408, 27499, and 27503
Document Number: 2024-02278
Type: Notice
Date: 2024-02-06
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that the Alaska Sea Life Center (ASLC), P.O. Box 1329, 301 Railway Avenue, Seward, AK 99664 (Responsible Party: Tara Reimer, Ph.D.); Alaska Fisheries Science Center's Marine Mammal Laboratory (MML), 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115 (Responsible Party: John Bengston); and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G), P.O. Box 25526, Juneau, AK 99802 (Responsible Party: Michael Rehberg), have applied in due form for permits to conduct research on Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus).
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