National Fisherman

The Commerce Department Inspector General's annual report for 2012 spotlights a "growth of complaints" made via the agency's hotline "related to NOAA," mostly involving "mismanagement or minor misconduct," and implies clearly that NOAA officials are showing insufficient interest in resolving these problems.

Not all the problems alluded to involve NOAA, but complaints about NOAA increased faster than any other agency in the Department of Commerce in the past fiscal year, the report notes.

Issued under the signature of Inspector General Todd Zinser, the report to the office of the acting secretary of commerce, Rebecca Blank, entitled "Top Management Challenges Facing the Department of Commerce," also describes what has been a year-long review of "rulemaking" by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and its policy arm, the New England Fishery Management Council.

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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