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

The Obama Administration recently announced that it is looking for candidates to be considered for a sustainable fishing prize.

The White House Champion for Change for Sustainable Seafood designation will honor individuals for “contributing to the ongoing recovery of America’s fishing industry and our fishing communities.”

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The American Fisheries Society is honoring recently retired Florida Institute of Oceanography director Bill Hogarth with the Carl R. Sullivan Fishery Conservation Award — one of the nation's premier awards in fisheries science - in recognition of his long career and leadership in preserving some of the world's most threatened species, advocating for environmental protections and leading Florida's scientific response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

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