National Fisherman

NEW ORLEANS — A federal judge presiding over litigation spawned by the massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill has dismissed all claims against the manufacturer of a chemical dispersant that was used to break up crude gushing from BP's blown-out well.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier ruled last week that federal laws shield Illinois-based Nalco Co. from liability over the government's use of Corexit after the 2010 spill.

Nalco didn't decide whether, when, where, how or in what quantities Corexit would be used in response to the spill, Barbier noted. And the judge said it wouldn't be proper for him to second guess the federal on-scene coordinator's decision to use the dispersant.

Lawyers for cleanup workers and coastal residents exposed to the dispersant had argued Nalco isn't immune from claims it supplied a defective product that wasn't safe for use in the Gulf.

But the judge said the claims would create an "obstacle to federal law" if he allowed them to proceed.

Read the full story at the Montgomery Advertiser>>

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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