National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration April 2012 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Naval Explosive Ordnance Disposal School Training Operations at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida
Document Number: 2012-10376
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and implementing regulations, notification is hereby given that a LOA has been issued to the U.S. Department of the Air Force, Headquarters 96th Air Base Wing (U.S. Air Force), Eglin Air Force Base (Eglin AFB) to take marine mammals, by Level B harassment, incidental to Naval Explosive Ordnance Disposal School (NEODS) training operations at Eglin AFB, Florida from approximately April, 2012, to April, 2017. The U.S. Air Force activities are considered military readiness activities pursuant to the MMPA, as amended by the National Defense Authorization Act of 2004 (NDAA).
International Whaling Commission; 64th Annual Meeting; Announcement of Public Meetings
Document Number: 2012-10374
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice announces the date, time, and location of the public meeting being held prior to the 64th annual International Whaling Commission (IWC) meeting.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Coral and Coral Reefs Off the Southern Atlantic States; Exempted Fishing Permit
Document Number: 2012-10372
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces the receipt of an application for an exempted fishing permit (EFP) from the South Carolina Aquarium. If granted, the EFP would authorize the South Carolina Aquarium to collect, with certain conditions, various species of reef fish, crabs, and lobsters in Federal waters off South Carolina and North Carolina. The specimens would be used in educational exhibits displaying South Carolina native species at the South Carolina Aquarium located in Charleston, SC.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Pile Replacement Project
Document Number: 2012-10370
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received an application from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to construction activities as part of a pile replacement project. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to the Navy to take, by Level B Harassment only, six species of marine mammals during the specified activity.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Recreational Management Measures for the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fisheries; Fishing Year 2012
Document Number: 2012-10358
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes management measures for the 2012 summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass recreational fisheries. The implementing regulations for these fisheries require NMFS to publish recreational measures for the fishing year and to provide an opportunity for public comment. The intent of these measures is to prevent overfishing of the summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass resources.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Spiny Lobster Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic; Amendment 11
Document Number: 2012-10248
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils (Councils) have submitted Amendment 11 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Spiny Lobster Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic (FMP) for review, approval, and implementation by NMFS. Amendment 11 proposes to limit spiny lobster fishing using trap gear in certain areas in the exclusive economic zone off the Florida Keys to protect threatened species of corals.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota Transfer
Document Number: 2012-10246
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is transferring a portion of its 2012 commercial summer flounder quota to the Commonwealth of Virginia. NMFS is adjusting the quotas and announcing the revised commercial quota for each state involved.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; 2012 Atlantic Bluefish Specifications
Document Number: 2012-10242
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS issues final specifications for the 2012 Atlantic bluefish fishery, including an annual catch limit, total allowable landings, a commercial quota and recreational harvest limit, and a recreational possession limit. This action establishes the allowable 2012 harvest levels and other management measures to achieve the target fishing mortality rate, consistent with the Atlantic Bluefish Fishery Management Plan.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; 2012-2013 Northeast Skate Complex Fishery Specifications
Document Number: 2012-10240
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This rule implements catch limits and associated measures for the Northeast skate complex fishery for the 2012-2013 fishing years. The action was developed by the New England Fishery Management Council pursuant to the provisions of the Northeast Skate Complex Fishery Management Plan. The catch limits are supported by the best available scientific information and reflect recent increases in skate biomass.
Marine Mammals; File No. 978-1857
Document Number: 2012-10227
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that Paul E. Nachtigall, Ph.D., Marine Mammal Research Program, Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, P.O. Box 1106, Kailua, Hawaii 96734 has been issued a minor amendment to Scientific Research Permit No. 978-1857.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-10187
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) will convene a meeting of the Ad Hoc Private Recreational Data Collection Advisory Panel.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2012-10153
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting of Marine Protected Area (MPA) Expert Workgroup and Public MPA Workshop in Pooler, GA. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-10152
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The New England Fishery Management Council's (Council) Recreational Advisory Panel will meet to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-10151
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting of its Habitat and Environmental Protection (Habitat) Advisory Panel (AP) to provide input on measures in Comprehensive Ecosystem-Based Amendment 3 and other habitat related topics. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Exempted Fishery for the Southern New England Skate Bait Trawl Fishery
Document Number: 2012-10121
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to modify the regulations implementing the Northeast (NE) Multispecies Fishery Management Plan (FMP) to allow vessels issued a Federal skate permit and a Skate Bait Letter of Authorization to fish for skates in a portion of southern New England from July through October of each year, outside of the NE multispecies days-at-sea (DAS) program. This action would allow vessels to harvest skates in a manner that is consistent with the bycatch reduction objectives of the NE Multispecies FMP.
Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary Regulations
Document Number: 2012-10093
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is amending the regulations for Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary to improve vessel and user safety, protect sanctuary resources from user impacts, clarify discharge language, and make other technical changes and corrections.
Hydrographic Services Review Panel Meeting
Document Number: 2012-9702
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-26
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Hydrographic Services Review Panel (HSRP) is a Federal Advisory Committee established to advise the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere on matters related to the responsibilities and authorities set forth in section 303 of the Hydrographic Services Improvement Act of 1998, its amendments, and such other appropriate matters that the Under Secretary refers to the Panel for review and advice.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Public Conference Call Regarding Recreational Yellowfin Tuna Fishery Data Collection
Document Number: 2012-9971
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In order to better inform the public and NMFS, a conference call that is open to the public will be held to discuss historical and future data collection in the U.S. recreational yellowfin tuna fishery and the relationship to international yellowfin tuna management (e.g., quota establishment or tracking landings).
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries off West Coast States; Biennial Specifications and Management Measures; Inseason Adjustments
Document Number: 2012-9963
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This final rule announces an inseason change to management measures in the Pacific Coast groundfish fisheries. This action, which is authorized by the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP), is intended to allow fisheries to access more abundant groundfish stocks while protecting overfished and depleted stocks. This rule also implements changes to the incidental retention allowance for halibut in the primary sablefish fishery under the authority of the Northern Pacific Halibut Act.
Endangered Species; File No. 15634
Document Number: 2012-9962
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC), 3333 N. Torrey Pines Ct., La Jolla, CA 92037, [Responsible Party: Lisa Ballance, Ph.D.] has been issued a permit to take leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) for purposes of scientific research.
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2012-9950
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice advises the public that the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) will convene a meeting of the Hawaii Regional Ecosystem Advisory Committee (REAC) in Honolulu, HI.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Document Number: 2012-9866
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has received 15 scientific research permit application requests relating to Pacific salmon, the southern distinct population segment of pacific green sturgeon, and three species of rockfish from the Puget Sound/Georgia Basin. The proposed research is intended to increase knowledge of species listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and to help guide management and conservation efforts. The applications may be viewed online at: https:/ /apps.nmfs.noaa.gov/preview/previewopenforcomment.cfm.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Russian River Estuary Management Activities
Document Number: 2012-9863
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-24
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 Sonoma County Water Agency (SCWA) to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, three species of marine mammals during estuary management activities conducted at the mouth of the Russian River, Sonoma County, California.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Document Number: 2012-9859
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has received two scientific research and enhancement permit application requests relating to salmonids listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The proposed research activities are intended to increase knowledge of the species and to help guide management and conservation efforts. The applications and related documents may be viewed online at: https:// apps.nmfs.noaa.gov/preview/previewopenforcomment.cfm. These documents are also available upon written request or by appointment by contacting NMFS by phone (916) 930-3600 or fax (916) 930-3629.
Marine Mammals; Photography Permit File No. 17032
Document Number: 2012-9857
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that a permit has been issued to Shane Moore, Moore & Moore Films, Box 2980, 1203 Melody Creek Lane, Jackson, WY 83001 to conduct commercial/educational photography in Alaska.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits
Document Number: 2012-9816
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable Fisheries, Northeast Region, NMFS (Assistant Regional Administrator), has made a preliminary determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) application contains all of the required information and warrants further consideration. This EFP would allow commercial fishing vessels to temporarily possess and scientifically sample fish caught during normal commercial fishing operations that would otherwise be required to be immediately discarded for the purpose of characterizing the bycatch of the Southern New England sea scallop fishery. Regulations under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require publication of this notification to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on applications for proposed EFPs.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Amendment 7 to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan
Document Number: 2012-9756
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces its intent to hold public scoping meetings to determine the scope and significance of issues to be analyzed in a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) on management measures for Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) and a potential proposed amendment to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP based on that process. The public process will help NMFS determine if existing measures are the best means of achieving certain management objectives for Atlantic BFT and providing flexibility for future management, consistent with the Consolidated HMS FMP, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act), the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act (ATCA), and other relevant Federal laws. NMFS is also announcing the availability of a scoping document describing measures for potential inclusion in a proposed Amendment. Table 1, below, under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION, provides details for seven scoping meetings to discuss and collect comments on the scoping document and certain management objectives for BFT. NMFS is requesting comments on this NOI, and the management of BFT, including, but not limited to, those described in the scoping document.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fisheries; Final 2012 Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Specifications
Document Number: 2012-9755
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is implementing final specifications, which consist of catch levels and management measures, for the 2012 summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass fisheries. The specifications are necessary to ensure the three species are not overfished or subject to overfishing in 2012. This final rule makes no changes to the interim specifications implemented on January 1, 2012, which were established using the best available scientific information.
Fisheries of the Economic Exclusive Zone Off Alaska; Deep-Water Species Fishery by Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska
Document Number: 2012-9714
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for species that comprise the deep-water species fishery by vessels using trawl gear in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the second seasonal apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for the deep-water species fishery in the GOA has been reached.
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2012-9603
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold the 48th meeting of its Fishery Data Coordinating Committee (FDCC) to review the progress of data collection improvements, identifying the next steps in data improvements, changes in the FDCC structure, operation, and membership.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Generic Annual Catch Limits/Accountability Measures Amendment for the Gulf of Mexico; Correction
Document Number: 2012-9604
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This action corrects the final rule implementing the Generic Annual Catch Limits/Accountability Measures Amendment (Generic ACL Amendment) to the Red Drum, Reef Fish Resources, Shrimp, and Coral and Coral Reefs Fishery Management Plans for the Gulf of Mexico (FMPs), which was published on December 29, 2011. Specifically, this action reinserts an inadvertently removed title from a table in the rule.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fisheries; Specifications and Management Measures; Correction
Document Number: 2012-9601
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This action corrects an omission in the regulatory text in the final rule for 2012 Specifications for the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish fisheries.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Comprehensive Annual Catch Limit Amendment Supplement
Document Number: 2012-9600
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to supplement the regulations implementing the Comprehensive Annual Catch Limit Amendment (Comprehensive ACL Amendment) for the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (Snapper-Grouper FMP), as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council). The Comprehensive ACL Amendment specified, in part, annual catch limits (ACLs) and accountability measures (AMs) for species in the Snapper-Grouper FMP. A final rule implementing the Comprehensive ACL Amendment was published in the Federal Register on March 16, 2012, and is effective on April 16, 2012. However, after publishing the final rule, NMFS discovered that the commercial quota for greater amberjack (commercial ACL for greater amberjack), which was specified in the Comprehensive ACL Amendment, was inadvertently not specified in the proposed or final rules. The intent of this supplemental proposed rule is to specify the commercial ACL for greater amberjack, while maintaining catch levels consistent with achieving optimum yield (OY) for the resource.
Western Pacific Pelagic Fisheries; Modification of American Samoa Large Vessel Prohibited Area
Document Number: 2012-9599
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes to modify certain boundaries of the large fishing vessel prohibited area around Tutuila, the Manua Islands, and Rose Atoll in American Samoa to align with the boundaries of the Rose Atoll Marine National Monument. The proposed action would simplify enforcement and administration of the management area.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Recreational Accountability Measures
Document Number: 2012-9596
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This final rule removes the recreational accountability measures that were implemented in January 2012 to address an overage of the fishing year 2010 Gulf of Maine haddock sub-annual catch limit by the recreational fishery. Newly available data indicate that there was no overage by the recreational fishery for fishing year 2010. Therefore, possession limits and an increase in the minimum size for haddock caught in the Gulf of Maine by recreational anglers aboard private or charter/party vessels are no longer needed.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-9541
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's (NPFMC) Crab Plan Team (CPT) will meet in May in Anchorage, AK.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-9540
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Social and Economic Sub-Committee of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (Council) Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) will meet with the Council's Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Advisory Panel (AP). The purpose of the meeting is to develop Fishery Performance Reports for the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish fisheries in preparation for setting specifications for 2013.
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-9539
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold the Eighth Meeting of its Sea Turtle Advisory Committee (STAC) in Honolulu, HI.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
Document Number: 2012-9538
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-20
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The SEDAR Steering Committee will meet via webinar to discuss the SEDAR process and assessment schedule. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and Missile Launch Operations at Kodiak Launch Complex, Alaska
Document Number: 2012-9480
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-19
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 Alaska Aerospace Corporation (AAC) to take two species of pinnipeds incidental to space vehicle and missile launch operations at the Kodiak Launch Complex (KLC) in Kodiak, Alaska.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Document Number: 2012-9479
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-19
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has completed a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) for 10(a)(1)(A), Enhancement of the Species Permit Application for the collection and transport of Spring-Run Chinook for the San Joaquin River Restoration Program.
Revisions of Boundaries, Regulations and Zoning Scheme for Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary; Revisions of Fish and Wildlife Service and State of Florida Management Agreement for Submerged Lands Within Boundaries of the Key West and Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuges and Regulations; Intent To Prepare a Draft Environmental Assessment or Environmental Impact Statement; Notice of Scoping Meetings
Document Number: 2012-9345
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-19
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of the Interior
In accordance with the National Marine Sanctuaries Act, as amended, (NMSA) and the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 as amended by the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Wildlife Refuge System of the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) have initiated a review of Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS or sanctuary) boundaries, regulations and zoning scheme. This review of existing regulations and marine zoning may result in changes to regulations, marine zoning, such as altering boundaries of current zones, creating new zones, or amending the regulations that apply to individual zones, and possibly sanctuary boundaries. The review will also include the FWS's Backcountry Management Plan and associated regulations, as authorized by the FWS and State of Florida Management Agreement for Submerged Lands within Boundaries of the Key West and Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuges, to evaluate substantive progress toward implementing the backcountry management goals for the refuges.
Updates to List of National System of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs)
Document Number: 2012-9301
Type: Notice
Date: 2012-04-19
Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce
The National System of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) provides a mechanism for MPAs managed by diverse government agencies to work together on common conservation priorities. In July 2011, NOAA and the Department of the Interior (DOI) invited federal, state, commonwealth, territorial and tribal MPA programs with potentially eligible existing MPAs to nominate their sites to the National System of MPAs (national system). A total of 58 nominations were received, including three from the American Samoa Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources, 40 from the Massachusetts Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources, three from the National Park Service, one from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, five from the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources, two from the South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology, one from the Virgin Islands Department Of Planning and Natural Resources and three from the Washington Department of Natural Resources. Following a 45-day public review period, two public comments were received by the National Marine Protected Areas Center (MPA Center). Both comments were supportive of the Fort Pulaski National Monument, which was nominated by the National Park Service. The managing agencies listed above were asked to make a final determination of sites to nominate to the national system. Finding them to be eligible for the national system, the MPA Center has accepted the nominations for 58 sites and placed them on the List of National System MPAs. The national system and the nomination process are described in the Framework for the National System of Marine Protected Areas of the United States of America (Framework), developed in response to Executive Order 13158 on Marine Protected Areas. The final Framework was published on November 19,2008, and provides guidance for collaborative efforts among federal, state, commonwealth, territorial, tribal and local governments and stakeholders to develop a national system that includes existing MPAs meeting national system criteria as well as new sites that may be established by managing agencies to fill key conservation gaps in important ocean areas.
Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Columbia River Crossing Project, Washington and Oregon
Document Number: 2012-9086
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-19
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received a request from the Department of Transportation's Federal Transit Authority (FTA) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), on behalf of the Columbia River Crossing project (CRC), for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to bridge construction and demolition activities at the Columbia River and North Portland Harbor, Washington and Oregon, over the course of 5 years from approximately July 2013 through June 2018. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is proposing regulations to govern that take and requests information, suggestions, and comments on these proposed regulations.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Proposed Delisting of Eastern DPS of Steller Sea Lions
Document Number: 2012-9335
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Under the authority of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA), we, NMFS, issue this proposed rule to remove the eastern distinct population segment (DPS) of Steller sea lions from the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. After receiving two petitions to delist this DPS, we completed a comprehensive review of the status of the eastern DPS of Steller Sea Lions. Based on the information presented in the draft Status Review, the factors for delisting in section 4 (a)(1) of the ESA, the objective recovery criteria in the 2008 Recovery Plan, and the continuing efforts to protect the species, we have determined, subject to further consideration following public comment, that this DPS has recovered and no longer meets the definition of a threatened species under the ESA: it is not in danger of extinction or likely to become endangered throughout all or a significant portion of its range within the foreseeable future. Thus, we find that the delisting of the DPS, as requested by the two petitions, is warranted. This rule also proposes technical changes that would recodify existing regulatory provisions and which are necessary to clarify that existing regulatory protections for the western distinct population segment of Steller sea lions will continue to apply. We seek public comments on this proposed action, the draft Status Review, and the draft Post- Delisting Monitoring Plan.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
Document Number: 2012-9334
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels using trawl gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the B season allowance of the 2012 Pacific cod total allowable catch allocated to trawl catcher vessels in the BSAI.
Groundfish Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone off Alaska and Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Observer Program
Document Number: 2012-8856
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 86 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI) and Amendment 76 to the FMP for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA), (collectively referred to as the FMPs). If approved, Amendments 86 and 76 would add a funding and deployment system for observer coverage to the existing North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program (Observer Program) and amend existing observer coverage requirements for vessels and processing plants. The new funding and deployment system would allow NMFS to determine when and where to deploy observers according to management and conservation needs, with funds provided through a system of fees based on the ex- vessel value of groundfish and halibut in fisheries covered by the new system. This action is necessary to resolve data quality and cost equity concerns with the Observer Program's existing funding and deployment structure. This action is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), the FMPs, and other applicable law.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #1, #2, and #3
Document Number: 2012-9249
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NOAA Fisheries announces 3 inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial and recreational fisheries in the area from Cape Falcon, Oregon to Point Arena, California.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries off West Coast States; Biennial Specifications and Management Measures; Inseason Adjustments
Document Number: 2012-9248
Type: Rule
Date: 2012-04-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This final rule announces inseason changes to management measures in the Pacific Coast groundfish fisheries. These actions, which are authorized by the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP), are intended to allow fisheries to access more abundant groundfish stocks while protecting overfished and depleted stocks.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Groundfish Fisheries in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands
Document Number: 2012-9244
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2012-04-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS, in consultation with the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council), announces its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) on Steller sea lion protection measures for the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI) groundfish fisheries, in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. The proposed action would restrict groundfish fishing in the BSAI to ensure the groundfish fisheries are not likely to result in jeopardy of continued existence or adverse modification or destruction of designated critical habitat (JAM) for the western distinct population segment (DPS) of Steller sea lions. The western DPS of Steller sea lions is listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and NMFS must ensure that the groundfish fisheries are not likely to result in JAM for this DPS. NMFS intends to work with stakeholders to develop fisheries restrictions that avoid the likelihood of JAM and minimize the potential economic impact on the fishing industry to the extent practicable while meeting the requirements of the ESA. The analysis in the EIS will determine the impacts to the human environment resulting from this proposed action and the alternatives. In scoping for the EIS, NMFS will accept written comments from the public to determine the issues of concern; the appropriate range of management alternatives; and the direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts. NMFS, in coordination with the Council, will conduct a public meeting at the October 2012 Council meeting to inform the public of this proposed action and alternatives, present issues and potential impacts, and gather public comment.