Articles about Federal Fisheries
Corrected figures show commercial sector shrank by $2.3 billion in 2012
If there’s one thing that the federal government has told Gulf fishermen for more than a decade, it’s that our most popular fish is in danger of overfishing. The government has even gone so far as to impose extreme catch restrictions that border on the absurd. That’s what makes a recent video showing the destruction of Red Snapper at the direction of the federal government all the more bizarre and infuriating.
Senator Rubio Asks for Review of Stock Assessments to Protect Fisheries and Fishing Communities in Gulf
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and senators from Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and North Carolina today sent a letter to the U.S. Government Accountability Office requesting a review of how the Department of Commerce conducts stock assessments in the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic. The stock assessments conducted by the National Marine Fisheries Service are critical in maintaining the vitality of the fisheries, the fishing communities, and related industries in Florida and the region.
As the debate winds down on whether Gulf states will be consistent with federal regulations for the 2012 red snapper season in the Gulf of Mexico – 40-days (tops) and a two-fish bag limit – it once again brings the conversation around to what seems to be the best solution of all: “Why don’t we just extend state waters out to 30 miles or 100 miles or 200 miles for fisheries management and be done with it?”
Just when you think federal fisheries management can’t get any more confusing, NOAA Fisheries pops out a solution to a problem that is truly baffling, especially when viewed against recent decisions to dramatically limit recreational catch in other regions. Last week, NOAA announced that fishermen will be allowed to catch up to 6,700 metric tons of Gulf of Maine cod in 2012. The statement from NOAA read:
It is easy to see why federal fisheries management is in the shape it is in.
Gulf red snapper saga continues
The long history of upside-down federal management of Gulf red snapper continued this week with NOAA Fisheries announcing more good news about the health of the fishery contrasted against the shortest recreational season on record: just 48 days. Coastal Conservation Association has warned that such absurd measures are inevitable until the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council conducts a reallocation of the fishery based on modern criteria.
The road to this point has not been simple. Coastal Conservation Association is among the many groups that have been opposed to catch shares, and we have invested a great deal of time and resources on many fronts to lessen the potential for negative impacts of such programs on the recreational angling community.
Anglers applaud decision to terminate catch share development in Amendment 21
Recreational anglers are applauding the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s decision today to “terminate all work relative to catch share development in Amendment 21,” the Comprehensive Catch Share Amendment. In a motion by Council member George Geiger of Florida, the Snapper Grouper Committee yesterday voted to remove catch shares from Amendment 21, setting up today’s action by the full Council.
Anglers frustrated with unrealistic implementation of Magnuson-Stevens Act
SILVER SPRINGS, MD – A three-day workshop on annual catch limits (ACLs) sponsored by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) that concludes this week leaves very little hope that the recreational sector will find a way to mitigate the negative impacts of ACLs without a legislative fix to the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the overarching federal law governing the nation’s fisheries.
CCA's call for reallocation could provide much-needed relief for recreational anglers
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has taken a long-awaited first step toward addressing outdated allocations between the commercial and recreational sectors in the grouper and red snapper fisheries. During its meeting this week in Gulfport, the Council voted to begin an amendment on grouper allocations, and to review red snapper allocations and transferability options at its next meeting in April.
They say that fishing is the world’s second oldest occupation, so it is likely there have been more ironic events in its long, storied history, but the recent letter from Massachusetts’s Governor Deval Patrick to President Obama must rank near the top of the list.
Overwhelming opposition to management scheme at Gulf Council workshop
If the public comment period at the Sector Separation Workshop hosted by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is any indication, recreational anglers are united against any proposal to separate the recreational sector into for-hire/charter and private boat angler categories. The three-day workshop was put on by the Gulf Council this week ostensibly to help managers and stakeholders gain a better understanding of sector separation as a proposed management tool for recreational fisheries.
Saltwater recreational fishing reopened in the vast majority of Louisiana’s state waters three weeks ago, and it’s time for anglers to return to the water with their families and friends, according to Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. The governor joined several representatives of the recreational fishing community on a fishing trip Wednesday, July 28 in the Gulf of Mexico south of Houma, Louisiana, catching a variety of popular sport fish.
CCA participants hope to see results after meeting with NOAA Fisheries
Outdoorsmen were out in force at the nation’s capital last week as two events in Washington DC were dedicated to how this country manages its wild and natural resources.
Environmental Defense Fund intervenes to thwart CCA catch share lawsuit
Seeking to defend a controversial catch share program for Gulf grouper, the Environmental Defense Fund has been allowed to intervene in a lawsuit filed by Coastal Conservation Association in federal district court that challenges the adoption and implementation of Amendment 29 to the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Management Plan.
Sportfishing Industry and Partners Call on Administration to Make Major Marine Fisheries Management Changes
Immediate administrative action needed to avoid significant problems with fisheries management
Today, a coalition of marine recreational fishing, boating, and conservation organizations and businesses called on the Obama administration to take immediate action to address a crisis within the federal fisheries management system.
From the South Atlantic to the western Pacific, federal marine management is a study in contrasts.
The United States has acted twice this week to impose restrictions on vast sections of ocean, dictating the future accessibility of those important resources. One action took years of scientific study and required dozens of public meetings attended by hundreds of concerned citizens, and thousands of hours of effort and organization before being implemented. The other took just months and was accomplished by the stroke of a pen. Taken together, the two recent marine management actions have cast a confusing net over the world of federal fisheries management.