National Fisherman

According to a deal announced last week, Massachusetts will receive nearly half of the federal disaster relief funds coming to the Northeast groundfish industry. Nobody thinks it will solve the fishery's problems.
State fishery directors from six northeastern states reached an agreement last week on how to distribute $32.8 million in federal disaster relief funds aimed at the struggling groundfish industry. Some of that money will go directly to fishermen impacted by recent cuts in cod catch limits, but other funds may be used to permanently streamline a fleet plagued by depleted fish stocks and facing the challenges of climate change.
While the decline in cod stocks has a history spanning decades, if not centuries, the origin of this particular disaster relief package dates back to September of 2012. With fishermen facing down drastic reductions – close to 80% cuts in some cases - in the amount of cod they’d be allowed to catch in the coming year, Acting Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank declared a fishery disaster for the Northeast’s iconic groundfish fishery that includes cod, haddock and flounder, among others.
That declaration opened the door for federal financial assistance, but it took more than a year and multiple attempts for legislators to actually appropriate any relief funds.
Read the full story at WCAI>>

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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