National Fisherman

At the most recent hearing on the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, testimony focused largely on rebuilding efforts, underutilized stocks and a national seafood sustainability certification.

Witnesses from the commercial and sport fishing sectors, as well as scientists and representatives of nongovernment organizations, talked about several fishery management issues they'd like to see addressed at a U.S. House Natural Resources Committee hearing Sept. 11.

The Magnuson-Stevens Act, or MSA, regulates management of federal fisheries from three miles to 200 miles offshore. It was implemented in 1976, and most recently updated in 2006. Alaska's delegation has said that a reauthorization likely won't come until next year.

In his opening comments, Chairman Doc Hastings, R-Wash., touched on a number of topics that could show up in the revisions, including the information available about sport fishing harvest and efforts, the confidential and proprietary nature of some fisheries data collection efforts and flexibility in rebuilding periods for certain stocks.

As is, Hastings said, the rebuilding periods sometimes cause economic hardships for communities, and some flexibility could be beneficial.

Hastings' points were echoed in testimony from several witnesses, most of whom represented Lower 48 fishing interests.

Read the full story at Alaska Journal of Commerce>>

Inside the Industry

Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.


The Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi is teaming up with leading shark-tracking nonprofit Ocearch to build the most extensive shark-tagging program in the Gulf of Mexico region.

In October, Ocearch is bringing its unique research vessel, the M/V Ocearch, to the gulf for a multi-species study to generate previously unattainable data on critical shark species, including hammerhead, tiger and mako sharks.

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