In Mixed Catch, NF Senior Editor Linc Bedrosian spotlights a wide range of commercial fishing-related news items from coast to coast.
Friday, 01 April 2011
Apparently, Mother Nature is a big April Fools Day fan. The calendar says it's spring, but Mama N. decided it would be hilarious to drop lots of heavy, wet snow on those of us residing in the Northeast. Ha-ha! Good one!
However, the work of Northeast fishermen and politicians to revise U.S. fisheries management policy is no joke. And it's gaining serious momentum.
Let's take stock of what we've seen over the last few weeks. The Commerce Department made a surprising about-face regarding fisheries enforcement. Where previously NOAA refused to hear fishermen's complaints, the Commerce Department announced it would review appeals of enforcement penalties after all. And it's implementing new practices designed to address problems listed in a federal report concerning enforcement practices.
Commerce has also announced plans to visit New England fishing ports to examine the economic wounds catch share management has inflicted upon fishermen and their communities. And next week, New Bedford, Mass., Mayor Scott Lang's Ocean and Fisheries Council travels to Washington, D.C., for an informational meeting to be held in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Room.
The meeting, expected to attract industry supporters from the Gulf of Mexico and the West Coast as well as a bi-partisan mix of Senate and House members, will outline industry concerns with fisheries management policy.
Fishermen's efforts to gain the ear of their Congressional delegates and affect change indicate that fishermen do indeed have a voice. And if they yell loud enough and long enough with that voice, they can restore balance to fisheries management.
National Fisherman Live: 12/16/14
In this episode, Bruce Buls, WorkBoat's technical editor, interviews Long Island lobsterman John Aldridge, who survived for 12 hours after falling overboard in the dead of night. Aldridge was the keynote speaker at the 2014 Pacific Marine Expo, which took place Nov. 19-21 in Seattle.
NOAA, in consultation with the Department of the Interior, has appointed 10 new members to the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee. The 20-member committee is composed of individuals with diverse backgrounds and experience who advise the departments of commerce and the interior on ways to strengthen and connect the nation's MPA programs. The new members join the 10 continuing members appointed in 2012.