National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration January 2017 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery Off the Atlantic States; Regulatory Amendment 1
Document Number: 2017-02057
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-31
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled ``Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,'' published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2017 (the Memorandum), this action stays the final rule NMFS published on December 30, 2016 in order to delay its effective date.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Allow the Use of Longline Pot Gear in the Gulf of Alaska Sablefish Individual Fishing Quota Fishery; Amendment 101
Document Number: 2017-02055
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-31
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled ``Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,'' published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2017 (the Memorandum), this action stays the final rule NMFS published on December 28, 2016, in order to delay its effective date.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Individual Bluefin Quota Program; Inseason Transfers
Document Number: 2017-02043
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-31
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled ``Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,'' published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2017 (the Memorandum), this action stays the final rule NMFS published on December 29, 2016, in order to delay its effective date.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States; Regulatory Amendment 16
Document Number: 2017-02042
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-31
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled ``Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,'' published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2017 (the Memorandum), this action stays the final rule NMFS published on December 29, 2016, in order to delay its effective date.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pollock in Statistical Area 610 in the Gulf of Alaska
Document Number: 2017-01515
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-31
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for pollock in Statistical Area 610 in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the A season allowance of the 2017 total allowable catch of pollock for Statistical Area 610 in the GOA.
Ocean Exploration Advisory Board
Document Number: 2017-01859
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-27
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice sets forth the schedule and proposed agenda of a forthcoming meeting of the Ocean Exploration Advisory Board (OEAB). OEAB members will discuss and provide advice on Federal ocean exploration programs, with a particular emphasis on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Office of Ocean Exploration and Research (OER) activities; the use of ships and other platforms in ocean exploration, including by non-for-profit organizations and the private sector; and other matters as described in the agenda found on the OEAB Web site at http://oeab.noaa.gov.
Candidate Conservation Agreements With Assurances Policy
Document Number: 2017-01840
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-26
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior
In accordance with a January 20, 2017, memo from the White House, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (Services), are delaying the effective date of a policy we published on December 27, 2016.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Skate Complex; Adjustment to the Skate Wing and Skate Bait Inseason Possession Limits
Document Number: 2017-00786
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We announce the reduction of the commercial per-trip possession limits for the skate wing and skate bait fisheries for the remainder of the 2016 fishing year, through April 30, 2017. These possession limit reductions are necessary to prevent the seasonal skate wing and skate bait commercial quotas from being exceeded and still allow an opportunity for harvesting the annual total allowable landings. This announcement informs the public that the skate wing and skate bait possession limits are reduced.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 2017 Recreational Accountability Measures and Closure for Atlantic Migratory Group Cobia
Document Number: 2017-00785
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-25
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for Atlantic migratory group cobia that are not sold (recreational) in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the Atlantic. In 2015 and 2016, recreational landings of Atlantic migratory group cobia (Atlantic cobia) exceeded the stock annual catch limit (ACL), and therefore, AMs for the recreational sector are triggered for 2017. NMFS closes the recreational sector for Atlantic cobia in Federal waters on January 24, 2017, and it will remain closed for the remainder of the fishing year through December 31, 2017. This closure is necessary to protect the resource of Atlantic cobia.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-01563
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Herring Committee to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-01478
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) will convene a work session via webinar for the Scientific and Statistical Committee's (SSC) Economics Subcommittee, which is open to the public.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-01447
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-24
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will hold a Post Council Meeting Briefing for the public via webinar.
Science Advisory Board (SAB); Notice of Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-01439
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice sets forth the schedule and proposed agenda of a forthcoming meeting of the NOAA Science Advisory Board. The members will discuss and provide advice on issues outlined in the section on Matters to be considered.
Pacific Island Fisheries; 2017 Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Lobster Harvest Guideline
Document Number: 2017-01410
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS establishes the annual harvest guideline for the commercial lobster fishery in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands for calendar year 2017 at zero lobsters.
Taking and Importing of Marine Mammals
Document Number: 2017-01356
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
On November 18, 2016, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved, under the Paperwork Reduction Act, changes to the collection-of-information under Control Number 0648-0335 necessary to require observer statements to support shipments of tuna harvested in fisheries with regular and significant mortality and serious injury of marine mammals. With notice of this approval, the new requirements for observer statements described in the Federal Register notice published on September 28, 2016, are hereby effective.
Notice of Availability of and Request for Public Comment on Space Weather Phase 1 Benchmarks
Document Number: 2017-01333
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Weather Service on behalf of the National Science and Technology Council; Committee on Environment, Natural Resources, and Sustainability; Space Weather Operations, Research, and Mitigation Subcommittee announces the availability of and requests public comments on the draft 2017 Space Weather Phase 1 Benchmarks (Draft Benchmarks).
Notice of Availability of and Request for Public Comment on White Paper on Improving the Space Weather Forecasting Research to Operations (R2O)-Operations to Research (O2R) Capability
Document Number: 2017-01331
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Weather Service on behalf of the National Science and Technology Council; Committee on Environment, Natural Resources, and Sustainability; Space Weather Operations, Research, and Mitigation Subcommittee announces the availability of and requests public comments on the draft white paper on Improving the Space Weather Forecasting Research to Operations (R2O)Operations to Research (O2R) Capability (Draft R2O-O2R white paper).
Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Document Number: 2017-01322
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-01307
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) trawl catch share five-year review Community Advisory Board (CAB), will hold a webinar, which is open to the public.
Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Document Number: 2017-01286
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Endangered and Threatened Species; Removal of the Puget Sound/Georgia Basin Distinct Population Segment of Canary Rockfish From the Federal List of Threatened and Endangered Species and Removal of Designated Critical Habitat, and Update and Amendment to the Listing Descriptions for the Yelloweye Rockfish DPS and Bocaccio DPS
Document Number: 2017-00559
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-23
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
We, NMFS, are issuing a final rule to remove the Puget Sound/ Georgia Basin canary rockfish (Sebastes pinniger) Distinct Population Segment (DPS) from the Federal List of Threatened and Endangered Species and remove its critical habitat designation. We proposed these actions based on newly obtained samples and genetic analysis that demonstrates that the Puget Sound/Georgia Basin canary rockfish population does not meet the DPS criteria and therefore does not qualify for listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Following public and peer review of the proposed rule and supporting scientific information, this final rule implements the changes to the listing and critical habitat for canary rockfish. We also update and amend the listing description for the Puget Sound/Georgia Basin yelloweye rockfish (S. ruberrimus) DPS based on a geographic description to include fish within specified boundaries. Further, although the current listing description is not based on boundaries, with this final rule we are also correcting a descriptive boundary for the DPS depicted on maps to include an area in the northern Johnstone Strait and Queen Charlotte Channel in waters of Canada consistent with newly obtained genetic information on yelloweye rockfish population grouping. We also update and amend the listing description for the bocaccio DPS based on a geographic description and to include fish within specified boundaries.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Application for an Exempted Fishing Permit
Document Number: 2017-01063
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This notice announces receipt of an application from the Alaska Seafood Cooperative and co-applicants to renew exempted fishing permit (EFP) 2016-01 as modified on January 10, 2017. NMFS announced receipt of the application for EFP 2016-01 on January 25, 2016. NMFS issued EFP 2016-01 on May 6, 2016, and modified the EFP on January 10, 2017. If granted, this renewal would extend the expiration date of modified EFP 2016-01 from April 30, 2017, to December 31, 2017. The objective of EFP 2016-01 is to allow the applicants to remove halibut from a trawl codend on the deck, and release those halibut back to the water in a timely manner to increase survivability. Under the EFP, halibut are sampled by NMFS-trained observers for length and physical condition using standard International Pacific Halibut Commission halibut mortality assessment methods. The objectives of EFP 2016-01 are to (1) test methods for sorting halibut on deck for suitability as an allowable fish handling mode for the non-pollock catcher/processor trawl fisheries (Amendment 80, community development quota, and trawl limited access) in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands under an eventual regulated program; and (2) simplify and improve on elements that worked under a 2015 deck sorting EFP project. This experiment has the potential to promote the objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Northern Pacific Halibut Act of 1982.
Fisheries of the Gulf of Mexico and the South Atlantic; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Pre-Workshop Webinar for Southeastern U.S. Black Grouper; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-00959
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The SEDAR 48 assessment process of Southeastern U.S. black grouper will consist of a Data Workshop, an Assessment Workshop and a series of assessment webinars, and a Review Workshop. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Endangered Species; File Nos. 19641, 17861, 20314, 20340, 20347, 20351, 20528, 20548, and 20651
Document Number: 2017-00956
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that nine applicants have applied in due form for permits to take Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) and shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum) for purposes of scientific research.
Marine Mammals; File No. 20294
Document Number: 2017-00952
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that Robert DiGiovanni, Jr., 6 Wakefield Rd. Hampton Bays, New York 11946, has applied in due form for a permit to conduct research on North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) and 44 other protected marine mammal and sea turtle species.
Pacific Island Fisheries; 2016 Annual Catch Limits and Accountability Measures
Document Number: 2017-00901
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes annual catch limits (ACLs) for Pacific Island bottomfish, crustacean, precious coral, and coral reef ecosystem fisheries, and accountability measures (AMs) to correct or mitigate any overages of catch limits. The proposed ACLs and AMs would be effective for fishing year 2016. The fishing year for each fishery begins on January 1 and ends on December 31, except for precious coral fisheries, which begin July 1 and end on June 30 the following year. Although the 2016 fishing year has ended for most stocks, we will evaluate 2016 catches against these proposed ACLs when data become available in mid- 2017. The proposed ACLs and AMs support the long-term sustainability of fishery resources of the U.S. Pacific Islands.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region; Amendment 36
Document Number: 2017-00859
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 36 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council). If implemented, this proposed rule would modify the FMP framework procedures to allow spawning special management zones (SMZs) to be established or modified through the framework process; establish spawning SMZs off North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida; establish transit and anchoring provisions in the spawning SMZs; and establish a sunset provision for most of the spawning SMZs. This proposed rule would also move the boundary of the existing Charleston Deep Artificial Reef Marine Protected Area (MPA). The purpose of this proposed rule is to protect spawning snapper- grouper species and their spawning habitat, and to reduce bycatch and bycatch mortality for snapper-grouper species, including speckled hind and warsaw grouper.
Coral Reef Conservation Program
Document Number: 2017-00845
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given of a public meeting of the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force (USCRTF). The meeting will be held Thursday, February 23, 2017, at 9:00 a.m. in Washington, DC, at the U.S. Department of Interior, 1925 Constitution Avenue NW., 20006. The meeting provides a forum for coordinated planning and action among federal agencies, state and territorial governments, and nongovernmental partners. Registration is requested for all events associated with the meeting. This meeting has time allotted for public comment. All public comments must be submitted in written format. A written summary of the meeting will be posted on the USCRTF Web site within two months of occurrence. For information about the meeting, registering and submitting public comments, go to http://www.coralreef.gov. Commenters may address the meeting, the role of the USCRTF, or general coral reef conservation issues. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comments, you should be aware that your entire comment, including personal identifying information may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Established by Presidential Executive Order 13089 in 1998, the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force mission is to lead, coordinate and strengthen U.S. government actions to better preserve and protect coral reef ecosystems. Co-chaired by the Departments of Commerce and Interior, Task Force members include leaders of 12 federal agencies, seven U.S. states and territories and three freely associated states.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska; Central Gulf of Alaska Rockfish Program
Document Number: 2017-00715
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS publishes the standard ex-vessel prices and fee percentage for cost recovery under the Central Gulf of Alaska Rockfish Program. This action is intended to provide participants in a rockfish cooperative with the standard prices and fee percentage for the 2016 fishing year, which was authorized from May 1 through November 15. The fee percentage is 2.54 percent. The fee payments are due from each rockfish cooperative on or before February 15, 2017.
International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries; 2017 and 2018 Commercial Fishing Restrictions for Pacific Bluefin Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean
Document Number: 2017-00623
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is proposing regulations under the Tuna Conventions Act to implement Resolution C- 16-08 (Measures for the Conservation and Management of Bluefin Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean). This Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) Resolution establishes annual and trip catch limits on commercial catch of Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) in waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) for 2017 and 2018. This action is necessary for the United States to satisfy its obligations as a member of the IATTC.
Pacific Island Fisheries; 2016-17 Annual Catch Limit and Accountability Measures; Main Hawaiian Islands Deep 7 Bottomfish
Document Number: 2017-00622
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-01-18
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In this final rule, NMFS specifies an annual catch limit (ACL) of 318,000 lb of Deep 7 bottomfish in the main Hawaiian Islands (MHI) for the 2016-17 fishing year. As an accountability measure (AM), if the ACL is projected to be reached, NMFS would close the commercial and non-commercial fisheries for MHI Deep 7 bottomfish for the remainder of the fishing year. The ACL and AM support the long-term sustainability of Hawaii bottomfish.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-00887
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Council) Scallop Plan Team will meet February 22, 2017.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Meeting
Document Number: 2017-00818
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Tilefish Advisory Panel of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Atlantic Sea Scallops Amendment 10 Data Collection
Document Number: 2017-00816
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Endangered Species; File No. 19508
Document Number: 2017-00811
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that Katherine Mansfield, Ph.D., University of Central Florida, 4000 Central Florida Boulevard, Building 20, BIO301, Orlando, FL 32825, has applied in due form for a permit to take loggerhead (Caretta caretta), Kemp's ridley (Lepidochelys kempii), green (Chelonia mydas), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) and leatherback (Dermochelys coraicea) sea turtles for purposes of scientific research.
Marine Mammals; File Nos. 19703 and 20993
Document Number: 2017-00807
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that Fred Sharpe, Ph.D., Alaska Whale Foundation, 4739 University Way NE., #1230, Seattle, WA 98105 (File No. 19703) has applied in due form for a permit to conduct research on cetaceans and Christopher Cilfone, Be Blue, 2569 Douglas Hwy. Unit 1, Juneau, AK 99801 (File No. 20993) has applied in due form to conduct commercial/educational photography on humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae).
Marine Mammals; File No. 20043
Document Number: 2017-00802
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Notice is hereby given that Whitlow Au, Ph.D., University of Hawaii, P.O. Box 1346, Kaneohe, HI 96744, has applied in due form for a permit to conduct research on marine mammals in Hawaii.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings and Hearings
Document Number: 2017-00801
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) has announced its annual preseason management process for the 2017 ocean salmon fisheries. This notice informs the public of opportunities to provide comments on the 2017 ocean salmon management measures.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Exempted Fishing Permits
Document Number: 2017-00791
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-17
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS announces the receipt of an application for an exempted fishing permit (EFP) from Dr. David Kerstetter of Nova Southeastern University to evaluate pelagic longline (PLL) catch and bycatch rates from within two different sub-areas in the northern portion of the East Florida Coast Pelagic Longline (PLL) Closed Area (north and south of 29[deg]50' N. lat.) and compare those rates to rates obtained by authorized samplers from outside the EFC PLL Closed Area and the availability of a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) analyzing the impacts of granting the application to conduct the research using commercial PLL vessels, with certain terms and conditions. The overall purpose of the research project would be to evaluate PLL catches and catch rates of target and non-target species within a portion of the EFC PLL Closed Area to evaluate the effectiveness of existing area closures at meeting current conservation and management goals under current conditions using standardized PLL gear on a specified number of commercial vessels.
Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
Document Number: 2017-00738
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Caribbean Fishery Management Council's Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) will hold a five-day meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Meetings
Document Number: 2017-00737
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold public meetings of the Council and its Committees.
National Environmental Policy Act Implementing Procedures and Executive Order 12114 Categorical Exclusions
Document Number: 2017-00553
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) publishes this notice to notify the public that NOAA has finalized revisions to the agency's procedures for implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and related authorities, as contained in the Companion Manual to NOAA Administrative Order NAO 216-6A (Companion Manual). Included in the Companion Manual are NOAA's revised categorical exclusions (CE) and related extraordinary circumstances. This notice provides a summary of the public comments received and the agency's responses as well as a summary of changes from the draft to the final procedures. The final Companion Manual is available online at http://www.nepa.noaa.nepa.gov.
Addition of Species to the Annexes of the Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife in the Wider Caribbean Region
Document Number: 2017-00541
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
During a meeting of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee (STAC) under the Protocol to the Cartagena Convention on Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW Protocol), held in Miami, Florida in November 2016, twelve species of fauna were nominated and recommended to be added to the Annexes of the SPAW Protocol. The Department of State, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Marine Fisheries Service solicit comment on the recommendations to add these twelve species to the Annexes.
Proposed Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project; Notice of Availability of a Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement
Document Number: 2017-00505
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
A permit application has been submitted by California American Water Company (CalAm) to NOAA's Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (MBNMS) to construct and operate a reverse osmosis (RO) desalination facility project (Project) in Monterey County, California. The permit review process is being conducted concurrently with a public process conducted pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA, Cal. Pub. Res. Code Sec. 21000 et seq.). NOAA has prepared, in cooperation with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), a joint draft environmental impact review/environmental impact statement (EIR/EIS) that analyzes the potential effects on the physical and human environment related to the Project proposed within MBNMS boundaries. NOAA is soliciting public comment on the draft EIR/EIS.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Petition for Rulemaking To Establish a Whale Protection Zone for Southern Resident Killer Whales
Document Number: 2017-00437
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
This document announces receipt by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) of a petition for rulemaking to establish a whale protection zone in the San Juan Islands, Washington, to support recovery of endangered Southern Resident killer whales. NMFS is requesting comments on the petition and will consider all comments and available information when determining whether to accept the petition and proceed with the suggested rulemaking.
Confidentiality of Information; Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act
Document Number: 2017-00307
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-01-13
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) withdraws a proposed rule to revise existing regulations governing the confidentiality of information submitted in compliance with any requirement or regulation under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act). NMFS published the proposed rule on May 23, 2012. After careful consideration, NMFS has decided that the proposed changes discussed in the proposed rule are not warranted at this time.
Council Coordination Committee Meeting
Document Number: 2017-00558
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS will host a meeting of the Council Coordination Committee (CCC), consisting of the Regional Fishery Management Council chairs, vice chairs, and executive directors on February 28-March 1, 2017. The intent of this meeting is to discuss issues of relevance to the Councils and NMFS, including issues related to the implementation of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act. Agenda items include discussions on budget allocations for FY2017 and budget planning for FY2018; an update on current joint science initiatives, including Ecosystem Based Fisheries Management; the FY2017 legislative outlook; updates on planning for the CCC Scientific Coordination Committee meeting, NMFS bycatch reduction strategy, the NMFS National Standard 1 guidance and implementation, Marine Recreational Information Program updates, stock assessment improvement plan; and other topics related to implementation of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Alaska Region Crab Permits
Document Number: 2017-00557
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Seabird and Shorebird Monitoring and Research at the Eastern Massachusetts National Wildlife Refuge Complex, Massachusetts
Document Number: 2017-00540
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NMFS has received an application from the Eastern Massachusetts (MA) National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Complex, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment incidental to conducting seabird and shorebird monitoring and research in the Eastern MA NWR Complex (Complex). The proposed dates for this action would be April 1, 2017 through March 31, 2018. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to the USFWS to incidentally take, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during the specified activity.
Notice and Request for Comment on Two New Categories of Special Use Permits Related to the Operation of Desalination Facilities Producing Potable Water for Consumption
Document Number: 2017-00515
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-01-12
Agency: Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
In accordance with a requirement of Public Law 106-513 (16 U.S.C. 1441(b)), NOAA hereby gives public notice of and requests public comment on whether the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries should adopt two new special use permit (SUP) categories pursuant to the requirements of Section 310 of the National Marine Sanctuaries Act (16 U.S.C. 1441). The two new SUP categories would be: (1) The continued presence of a pipeline transporting seawater to or from a desalination facility; and (2) the use of sediment to filter seawater for desalination. This notice includes background information on the use of desalination in California national marine sanctuaries, ONMS regulations applicable to activities that disturb submerged lands or discharge into sanctuaries, as well as how NOAA would examine the environmental impacts of such activities. While most current desalination activity in sanctuaries is occurring in California, the SUP categories are intended to apply across the national marine sanctuary system.