Written by Jen Finn
The International Pacific Halibut Commission surprised most industry watchers by veering far off course from the staff recommendations for the 2013 halibut quotas and not implementing an expected 30 percent cut statewide.
The staff had recommended an overall quota of 22.55 million pounds, including the West Coast and British Columbia, with a quota for Alaska waters of 17.26 million pounds. That is down from an overall quota of 33.54 million pounds in 2012 and a state-wide quota of 25.51 million pounds.
Instead, the commissioners voted 5-1 to set the overall quota at 31.03 million pounds, with the quota in Alaska waters at 23 million pounds for 2013.
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NMFS has awarded 16 grants totaling more than $2.5 million as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.
The program supports the development of technological solutions and changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch and aims to to find creative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.Read more...
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