ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The National Marine Fisheries Service announced Tuesday it will consider dialing back commercial fishing restrictions in the western Aleutian Islands that were put in place to protect endangered Steller sea lions.
The agency will take public comment on five alternatives for measures aimed at protecting sea lions with an eye toward reducing the economic effect on fishermen seeking Pacific cod, pollock and Atka mackerel.
Four of the alternatives, including the agency's preliminary preference, would loosen fishing restrictions put in place two years ago.
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National Fisherman Live: 1/27/15
In this episode:
Assessment: Atlantic menhaden is not overfished
Bering Sea pollock fishery casts off
Dock to Dish opens Florida’s first CSF
Second wave of disaster funds for Alaska
Fisherman lands N.C.’s largest bluefin ever
The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is still seeking public review and comment on the Alaska Responsible Fisheries Management Conformance Criteria (Version 1.2, September 2011). The public review and comment period, which opened on Dec. 3, 2014, runs through Monday, Feb. 3.
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.