National Fisherman

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has signed onto proposed federal legislation that would develop uniform standards for vessel discharges and restore an exemption from portions of the Clean Water Act previously enjoyed by commercial fishing boats.

Warren is co-sponsoring the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act legislation filed by U.S. Sens. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, and Marco Rubio, R-Fla., that is meant to streamline regulations and eliminate redundancies.

Rubio initially filed the bill in 2012, but it died in committee.

A similar bill, supported by the Northeast Seafood Coalition, was filed in the House last year by Rep. Frank LoBiondo, R-N.J. That bill, which would place a moratorium on fines for incidental discharges from commercial vessels under 79 feet, was incorporated into the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2014 and passed last month by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Read the full story at Gloucester Times>>

Inside the Industry

NMFS recently released a draft action plan for fish discard and release mortality science, creating a list of actions that they hope can better inform fisheries.

We know that fishermen have to deal with bycatch by discarding or releasing unwanted catch overboard, but there is a data gap regarding how those fish survive.


A new study has identified a set of features common to all ocean ecosystems that provide a visual diagnosis of the health of the underwater environment coastal communities rely on.

Together, the features detail cumulative effects of threats -- such as overfishing, pollution, and invasive species,  allowing responders to act faster to increase ocean resiliency and sustainability.

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