Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
NMFS has determined that the Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) daily retention limit that applies to vessels permitted in the Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Angling category and the HMS Charter/Headboat category (when fishing recreationally for BFT) should be adjusted for the remainder of 2017, based on consideration of the regulatory determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments. NMFS is adjusting the Angling category BFT daily retention limit to two school BFT and one large school/small medium BFT per vessel per day/trip for private vessels (i.e., those with HMS Angling category permits); and three school BFT and one large school/small medium BFT per vessel per day/trip for charter vessels (i.e., those with HMS Charter/Headboat permits when fishing recreationally). These retention limits are effective in all areas, except for the Gulf of Mexico, where NMFS prohibits targeted fishing for BFT.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; West Coast Salmon Fisheries; 2017 Management Measures and a Temporary Rule
Through this final rule, NMFS establishes fishery management measures for the 2017 ocean salmon fisheries off Washington, Oregon, and California and the 2018 salmon seasons opening earlier than May 1, 2018. The temporary rule for emergency action (emergency rule), under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), implements the 2017 annual management measures for the West Coast ocean salmon fisheries for the area from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR, from May 1, 2017, through October 28, 2018. The emergency rule is required because allocation of coho harvest between recreational and commercial fisheries will not be consistent with the allocation schedule specified in the Pacific Coast Salmon Fishery Management Plan (FMP) in order to limit fishery impacts on Queets coho and meet conservation and management objectives. The fishery management measures for the area from Cape Falcon, OR, to the U.S./Mexico border are consistent with the FMP and are implemented through a final rule. Specific fishery management measures vary by fishery and by area. The measures establish fishing areas, seasons, quotas, legal gear, recreational fishing days and catch limits, possession and landing restrictions, and minimum lengths for salmon taken in the U.S. exclusive economic zone (EEZ) (3-200 NM) off Washington, Oregon, and California. The management measures are intended to prevent overfishing and to apportion the ocean harvest equitably among treaty Indian, non- treaty commercial, and recreational fisheries. The measures are also intended to allow a portion of the salmon runs to escape the ocean fisheries in order to provide for spawning escapement and inside fisheries (fisheries occurring in state internal waters).
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; 2017 and 2018 Sector Operations Plans and 2017 Allocation of Northeast Multispecies Annual Catch Entitlements
We have approved sector operations plans for fishing years 2017 and 2018, granting regulatory exemptions for fishing years 2017 and 2018, and providing Northeast multispecies annual catch entitlements to approved sectors for fishing year 2017. Approval of sector operations plans is necessary to allocate annual catch entitlements to the sectors and for the sectors to operate. The Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan allows limited access permit holders to form sectors, and requires sectors to submit their operations plans and contracts to us, NMFS, for approval or disapproval. This interim final rule approves sector operations plans, grants regulatory exemptions for sectors, and provides preliminary allocations of annual catch entitlements to sectors for the start of the 2017 fishing year. Changes to exemptions and updates to sector annual catch entitlements may be considered in subsequent rulemakings.
Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill; Notice of Intent To Conduct Strategic Restoration Planning That Considers Existing Projects for Barataria Bay, Louisiana and To Initiate Restoration Planning With Regard to the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion
NOAA, on behalf of the Federal and state natural resource trustees for the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group (Louisiana TIG Trustees) for the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill, is initiating two actions with this notice. First, the Louisiana TIG Trustees are announcing their intent to prepare a Strategic Restoration Plan for Barataria Basin, Louisiana, pursuant to the Deepwater Horizon Programmatic Damage Assessment and Restoration Plan and Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PDARP/PEIS) (Feb 2016). This Barataria Basin Strategic Restoration Plan, referred to herein as the Phase I Plan, will consider identifying habitat restoration components of the Louisiana Draft 2017 Coastal Master Plan (draft 2017 CMP) to serve as an Oil Pollution Act (OPA) Strategic Restoration Plan for restoring wetland, coastal, and nearshore habitat in Barataria Basin, Louisiana, consistent with OPA and with the Trustees' PDARP/PEIS. The Louisiana TIG Trustees will consider whether a combination of Barataria Basin habitat restoration projects in the draft 2017 CMP constitutes a preferred alternative, among other feasible alternatives, for fulfilling OPA's and the PDARP/ PEIS's intent for the trustees to address ecosystem-level injuries and to restore, rehabilitate, replace, or acquire the equivalent of the injured wetland, coastal and nearshore habitat resources and services and compensate for interim losses of those resources from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Any projects or suites of projects that are ultimately included in the resulting Strategic Restoration Plan will be further analyzed in subsequent phased restoration plans and their accompanying environmental impact analyses as required by OPA, NEPA, and the Trustees' PDARP/PEIS. Second, the Louisiana TIG Trustees are providing notice of the initiation of restoration planning, including analysis of the Mid- Barataria Sediment Diversion and appropriate alternatives to partially restore ecosystem and wetland, coastal and nearshore habitat resources and services in Barataria Basin, and compensate for interim losses of those resources and services, injured by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This potential Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion Restoration Plan is referred to herein as the Phase 2 Plan. The Louisiana TIG Trustees are evaluating whether the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion is an appropriate project for restoring injuries from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and the Louisiana TIG Trustees anticipate that their decision in that regard will be informed by the results of the Phase 1 Plan. Further, by separate Supplemental Notice of Intent, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is announcing its intent, as part of its review under section 404 of the Clean Water Act, section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (``Section 10/404''), and section 408 of the Rivers and Harbors Appropriation Act of 1899, as amended (``Section 408''), to prepare a draft Environmental Impact Statement (``EIS'') pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). USACE will use the EIS, in conjunction with other relevant materials, to inform decision-making on the Department of the Army, section 10/404 and section 408 requests for permits and permissions for the Mid- Barataria Sediment Diversion. In order to capitalize on that ongoing environmental review, the Louisiana TIG Trustees are, at this time, requesting input on the scope of the USACE EIS via the process outlined in the coordinated USACE NOI. The LA TIG is supporting the development of the USACE EIS with the potential for the EIS to serve as the EIS for the Phase 2 Restoration Plan. The Louisiana TIG Trustees will additionally seek formal public involvement in the Phase 2 Draft Restoration Plan process in accordance with applicable Federal regulations and consistent with the PDARP/PEIS.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; U.S. Navy Training Activities in the Gulf of Alaska Temporary Maritime Activities Area
Upon application from the U.S. Navy (Navy), we (NMFS) are issuing regulations under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) to govern the unintentional taking of marine mammals incidental to the training activities conducted in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) Temporary Maritime Activities Area (TMAA) Study Area (hereafter referred to the Study Area) from May 2017 through May 2022. These regulations allow us to issue a Letter of Authorization (LOA) for the incidental take of marine mammals during the Navy's specified activities and timeframes, set forth the permissible methods of taking, set forth other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, and set forth requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of the incidental take.
Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to U.S. Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active Sonar
NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for authorization to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System (SURTASS) Low Frequency Active (LFA) sonar in areas of the world's oceans (with the exception of Arctic and Antarctic waters and certain geographic restrictions), from August 15, 2017, through August 14, 2022. The Navy's activities are considered military readiness activities pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004 (FY 2004 NDAA). Pursuant to the MMPA, NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue regulations to govern the incidental take of marine mammals by Level B harassment during the specified activity.
Plan for Periodic Review of Regulations
Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) section 610 requires that the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS) periodically review existing regulations that have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, such as small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. This plan describes how ONMS will perform this review and describes the regulation proposed for review during the current review-cycle.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Coast Boulevard Improvements Project, La Jolla, California
NMFS has received a request from the City of San Diego for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to Coast Boulevard improvements in La Jolla, California. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to incidentally take marine mammals during the specified activities.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Mid-Atlantic Forage Species Omnibus Amendment
NMFS proposes to approve and implement measures included in an omnibus amendment submitted by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council that would manage forage species within Mid-Atlantic Federal waters. This amendment would implement an annual landing limit, possession limits, and permitting and reporting requirements for Atlantic chub mackerel and certain previously unmanaged forage species and species groups within Mid-Atlantic Federal waters. The purpose of this action is to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species until the Council has adequate opportunity and information to evaluate the potential impacts of forage fish harvest on existing fisheries, fishing communities, and the marine ecosystem.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Meeting
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold public meetings of the Council in conjunction with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.
Fisheries of the Gulf of Mexico; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
The SEDAR 51 assessment process of Gulf of Mexico gray snapper will consist of a Data Workshop, an Assessment Workshop and a series of assessment webinars, and a Review Workshop. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will hold a two day meeting of its Ad Hoc Red Snapper Private Recreational Advisory Panel (AP).
International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries; 2017 and 2018 Commercial Fishing Restrictions for Pacific Bluefin Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is issuing regulations under the Tuna Conventions Act to implement Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC or the Commission) Resolution C-16-08, which establishes limits on the U.S. commercial catch of Pacific bluefin tuna from waters of the IATTC Convention Area 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 Annual Catch Limits and Accountability Measures
In this final rule, NMFS specifies the 2016 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 final ACLs and AMs are 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 final ACLs when data become available in mid-2017. The ACL and AM specifications support the long-term sustainability of fishery resources of the U.S. Pacific Islands.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Groundfish Fishery; Amendment 18
This final rule implements Amendment 18 to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan. The New England Fishery Management Council developed Amendment 18 to promote fleet diversity and in the groundfish fishery, prevent the acquisition of excessive shares of permits, and enhance sector management. This action limits the number of permits and annual groundfish allocation that an entity can hold. This action also removes several effort restrictions to increase operational flexibility for fishermen on limited access handgear vessels.
Marine Mammals; File No. 21199
Notice is hereby given that Vanessa Coates, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Natural History Unit, BBC Bristol, Whiteladies Road, United Kingdom BS8 2LR, has applied in due form for a permit to conduct commercial photography on killer whales (Orcinus orca), Dall's porpoise (Phocoenoides dalli), and Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens).
Evaluations of National Estuarine Research Reserves
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Office for Coastal Management will hold a public meeting to solicit comments for the performance evaluation of the Jobos Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve.
Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Catch Sharing Plan
This final rule announces the approval of the Pacific Halibut Catch Sharing Plan (Plan) and codified regulations for the International Pacific Halibut Commission's (IPHC or Commission) regulatory Area 2A off Washington, Oregon, and California (Area 2A). In addition, NMFS announces the implementation of the portions of the Plan and management measures that are not regulated through the IPHC, including the sport fishery allocations and management measures for Area 2A. The intent of this final rule is to conserve Pacific halibut, provide angler opportunity where available, and minimize bycatch of overfished groundfish species.
Deep Seabed Mining: Request for Extension of Exploration Licenses
Pursuant to the Deep Seabed Hard Mineral Resources Act the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has received an application for five-year extensions of Deep Seabed Mining Exploration Licenses USA-1 and USA-4 that are held by the Lockheed Martin Corporation (``Lockheed Martin'' or the ``Licensee''). The application includes a revised exploration plan that sets forth the activities to be conducted during the extended period of the license.
Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee; Public Meeting
Notice is hereby given of a meeting of the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee (Committee) in Annapolis, Maryland.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has evaluated one Tribal Resource Management Plan (TRMP or Tribal Plan) submitted by the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (CTCR) to NMFS pursuant to the limitation on take prohibitions for actions conducted under Tribal Plans promulgated under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Tribal Plan specifies artificial propagation, harvest, predator control, kelt reconditioning, and monitoring and evaluation activities in the Okanogan River basin and portions of the Upper Columbia River (UCR). This document serves to notify the public that NMFS, by delegated authority from the Secretary of Commerce, has determined pursuant to the Tribal ESA section 4(d) Rule for salmon and steelhead that implementing and enforcing the plans will not appreciably reduce the likelihood of survival and recovery of ESA-listed UCR Spring Chinook salmon and steelhead.
Determination of Overfishing or an Overfished Condition
This action serves as a notice that NMFS, on behalf of the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary), has found that the following stocks are subject to overfishing or overfished: South Atlantic golden tilefish and the Western and Central Pacific stock of Pacific bigeye tuna are subject to overfishing; South Atlantic blueline tilefish is still subject to overfishing; and Pacific bluefin tuna in the North Pacific Ocean and South Atlantic red snapper are still both overfished and subject to overfishing. NMFS, on behalf of the Secretary, notifies the appropriate fishery management council (Council) whenever it determines that overfishing is occurring, a stock is in an overfished condition or a stock is approaching an overfished condition.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 2017 Accountability Measure-Based Closures for Recreational Species in the U.S. Caribbean off Puerto Rico
NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for two species groups in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the U.S. Caribbean off Puerto Rico for the 2017 fishing year through this temporary rule. NMFS has determined that recreational sector annual catch limits (ACLs) in the EEZ off Puerto Rico were exceeded for wrasses and parrotfishes based on average landings during the 2013-2015 fishing years. This temporary rule reduces the lengths of the 2017 fishing seasons for these species groups by the amounts necessary to ensure that landings do not exceed the applicable recreational ACLs in 2017. NMFS closes the recreational sectors for these species groups beginning on the dates specified in the DATES section and continuing through the end of the current fishing year, December 31, 2017. These AMs are necessary to protect the Caribbean reef fish resources in the EEZ off Puerto Rico.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Recreational Management Measures for the Summer Flounder and Scup Fisheries; Fishing Year 2017
NMFS proposes management measures for the 2017 summer flounder and scup 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 constrain recreational catch to established limits and prevent overfishing of the summer flounder and scup resources. We are proposing the 2017 management measures and revised specifications for the recreational black sea bass fishery in separate actions.
Fisheries of the Economic Exclusive Zone Off Alaska; Deep-Water Species Fishery by Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska
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.
Schedule of Fees for Access to NOAA Environmental Data, Information, and Related Products and Services
In this final rule, NESDIS adds a new service/product to the NESDIS FY 2017 schedule of fees for the sale of its data, information, and related products and services to users. NESDIS is authorized under the United States Code to assess fees, up to fair market value, for access to environmental data, information, and products derived from, collected, and/or archived by NOAA. This action adds a new user fee for a data product titled, High Definition Geomagnetic ModelReal Time.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Northeast Region Observer Providers Requirements
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.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Bering Sea Fishery Ecosystem Plan Team (BS FEP) will meet in April, in Homer, AK.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Crab Plan Team will meet in May, in Juneau, AK.
Fisheries of the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
The SEDAR 54 assessment of the HMS Sandbar will consist of a series of assessment webinars. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits
The NMFS Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable Fisheries, Greater Atlantic Region, has made a preliminary determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit application contains all of the required information and warrants further consideration. This Exempted Fishing Permit would allow commercial lobster vessels to participate in a lobster growth and abundance study, under the direction of Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries in state and Federal waters off the coast of Massachusetts. Regulations under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act require publication of this notification to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on Exempted Fishing Permit applications.
General Advisory Committee to the U.S. Section to the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission and Scientific Advisory Subcommittee to the General Advisory Committee; Meeting Announcement
NMFS announces a public meeting of the General Advisory Committee (GAC) to the U.S. Section to the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) on June 1, 2017, and a public meeting of the Scientific Advisory Subcommittee (SAS) to the GAC on May 31, 2017. The meeting topics are described under the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Coastal Pelagic Species (CPS) Subcommittee of the Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) will hold a meeting via webinar to review the 2017 Pacific mackerel biomass projection estimate. The meeting is open to the public.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Joint Scallop Plan Development Team and Scallop Advisory Panel 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.
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting of its Pelagics Plan Team (PPT) in Honolulu, HI to discuss fishery issues and develop recommendations for future management.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits
The Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable Fisheries, Greater Atlantic Region, NMFS, has made a preliminary determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) application submitted by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) contains all of the required information and warrants further consideration. This EFP would allow participants to use electronic monitoring systems in lieu of at-sea monitors in support of a study to develop electronic monitoring for the purposes of catch monitoring in the groundfish 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.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Black Sea Bass Fishery; 2017 and Projected 2018 Specifications
NMFS proposes revised black sea bass specifications for the 2017 fishing year and projected specifications for 2018. In addition, this rule proposes to remove an accountability measure implemented at the start of the fishing year designed to account for commercial sector overages in 2015. Updated scientific information regarding the black sea bass stock indicates that higher catch limits should be implemented to obtain optimum yield, and that the accountability measure is no longer necessary or appropriate. This action is intended to inform the public of the proposed specifications for the 2017 fishing year and projected specifications for 2018.
National Estuarine Research Reserve System
Notice is hereby given that the Stewardship Division, Office for Coastal Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce is announcing a thirty (30) day public comment period for the revised management plan for South Slough, Oregon National Estuarine Research Reserve management plan revision.
Evaluation of State Coastal Management Programs and National Estuarine Research Reserves
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Office for Coastal Management will hold a public meeting to solicit comments on the performance evaluation of the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program. Notice is also hereby given of the availability of the final evaluation findings for the American Samoa, Virginia, and Florida Coastal Management Programs and Weeks Bay, San Francisco Bay, and Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserves.
Notice of Approval for the Weeks Bay, Alabama National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan Revision
Notice is hereby given that the Stewardship Division, Office for Coastal Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Commerce approves the Revised Management Plan for the Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) located in Alabama. Refer to SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for additional information.
Notice of Availability of the Alabama Trustee Implementation Group Final Recreational Use Restoration Plan I and Final Environmental Impact Statement
In accordance with the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Deepwater Horizon Federal and State natural resource trustee agencies for the Alabama Trustee Implementation Group (Alabama TIG) have prepared a Final Restoration Plan I and Environmental Impact Statement: Provide and Enhance Recreational Opportunities (Final RP/EIS). The Final RP/EIS describes the restoration project alternatives considered by the Alabama TIG to compensate for recreational shoreline use lost as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The Alabama TIG evaluated these alternatives under criteria set forth in the OPA natural resource damage assessment (NRDA) regulations, and also evaluated the environmental consequences of the restoration alternatives in accordance with NEPA. The purpose of this notice is to inform the public of the availability of the Final RP/EIS.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the San Francisco Ferry Terminal Expansion Project, South Basin Improvements Project
NMFS has received a request from the San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to construction activities as part of a ferry terminal expansion and improvements project. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting public comment on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to WETA to incidentally take marine mammals, by Level B harassment only, during the specified activity.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Commercial Aggregated Large Coastal Shark and Hammerhead Shark Management Groups Retention Limit Adjustment
NMFS is adjusting the commercial aggregated large coastal shark (LCS) and hammerhead shark management group retention limit for directed shark limited access permit holders in the Atlantic region from 25 LCS other than sandbar sharks per vessel per trip to 3 LCS other than sandbar sharks per vessel per trip. This action is based on consideration of the regulatory determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments. The retention limit will remain at 3 LCS other than sandbar sharks per vessel per trip in the Atlantic region through the rest of the 2017 fishing season or until NMFS announces via a notification in the Federal Register another adjustment to the retention limit or a fishery closure is warranted. This retention limit adjustment will affect anyone with a directed shark limited access permit fishing for LCS in the Atlantic region.
Endangered Species; File No. 21293
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has received an application for an incidental take permit (permit) from Mr. Jack Rudloe, Gulf Specimen Marine Laboratories, Inc. (GSML), pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). As required by the ESA, GSML's application includes a conservation plan designed to minimize and mitigate the impacts of any take of endangered or threatened species. The permit application is for the incidental take of ESA-listed adult and juvenile sea turtles associated with otherwise lawful trawling activities in Florida state waters of Bay, Gulf, Franklin, and Wakulla Counties to harvest marine organisms for the purpose of supplying entities conducting scientific research and educational activities. The duration of the proposed permit is for 18 years. NMFS is furnishing this notice in order to allow other agencies and the public an opportunity to review and comment on this document. All comments received will become part of the public record and will be available for review.