National Fisherman

NOAA has released a video and an essay on the Office of Law Enforcement website touting its value to the nation and the fishing industry by ensuring “a level playing field” — even as the agency continued to suppress a $500,000 addendum to a special judicial master’s report on abuses of the badge carried out against commercial fishermen in Gloucester and across the Northeast.

The 66-case study by Special Master Charles B. Swartwood III was completed and delivered to the office of then Commerce Secretary John Bryson last March, but still has not been made public.

In late September, after Bryson was found unconscious behind the wheel of his car in suburban Los Angeles and resigned from the cabinet, a spokeswoman for Acting Secretary Rebecca Blank said she had asked her staff to “gather more information regarding issues identified” in the 554-page report by Swartwood.

But since then, numerous queries to Blank, Cameron Kerry — general counsel for the department and the brother of U.S. Sen. John Kerry — NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco and her chief counsel Lois Schiffer have been ignored.

Read the full story at the Gloucester Daily 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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