National Fisherman


The Rudderpost 

jesJes Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman magazine and NationalFisherman.com.

 

JHathaway2 As the attendees of the International Arctic Fisheries Symposium get down to work on day two of a gathering that will carefully analyze the possibilities for commercial fisheries in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas, the Obama administration has approved Shell Oil's plan for exploration and drilling in the Beaufort.

Natives and environmentalists are raising concerns, as well they should, that the proper precautions are not in place in the event of a spill.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, "Measures used to contain oil in open water were ineffective in tests off Alaska's coast. Just getting equipment to a catastrophic spill in the Beaufort, which has few support facilities and some of the worst weather and light conditions in the world, would be challenging."

Shell's defense is that they continue to make advances in spill prevention response and technology. While I applaud them for ongoing R&D success, I'm appalled that they would be permitted to drill in any location without a safety net.

What is the point of tiptoeing our way to sustainable Arctic fisheries if the federal government is going to allow another industry to go rogue with potentially disastrous results?

Inside the Industry

NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.

The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.

Read more...

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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