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Subject: CRS: Daily Summary - 3/5/99 - Longer Friday Version - Part 3 of 3 (fwd)CRS: Daily Summary - 3/5/99 - New Material
From: Bill Silvert <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:[log in to unmask]
Date:Mon, 8 Mar 1999 10:52:13 -0400

text/plain (242 lines)

Here is the new material from the latest set of three CRS summaries.

Suchman, Cynthia wrote:


Coast Guard Inquiry into Clam Vessel Sinkings.  On Mar. 19, 1999, the
Coast Guard panel investigating the December 1998-January 1999 sinkings
of 5 mid-Atlantic clam vessels is scheduled to release its
recommendations.  The Associated Press reports the panel is expected to
recommend licensing of fishing vessel skippers and request mandatory
inspections for fishing vessels.  If adopted by the panel, the Coast
Guard commandant could present the recommendations to Congress.[Bergan
(NJ) Record, Assoc Press]

NMFS FY2000 Budget.  On Mar. 18, 1999, the House Resources Subcommittee
on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans has scheduled an
oversight hearing on the FY 2000 budget request of NMFS.[personal

House Resources Fishery Hearing.  On Mar. 11, 1999, the House Resources
Subcommittee on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans has
scheduled a hearing on reauthorization of the Fishermen's Protective
Act of 1967, and the Intergovernmental Consultative Committee Agreement
Between the Government of the United States and the Government of the
Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on Mutual Fisheries Relations of
May 31, 1988, as amended (the United States-Soviet Comprehensive
Fisheries Agreement -- obligations of the former Soviet Union under
this agreement have devolved on the Russian Federation).[personal

U.S.-Canada Lobster Summit.  On Mar. 3-4, 1999, more than 200 lobster
fishermen, marketers, management biologists, and other scientists
gathered in Rockport, ME for the U.S.-Canada Lobster Summit III.
Sponsored by the New England Aquarium, the Summit focused on reaching a
consensus on methods of lobster stock assessment and efforts to improve
data collection.[Bangor Daily News]

Toothfish.  On Mar. 2, 1999, the Greenpeace vessel Arctic Sunrise
discovered an unmarkeded vessel, likely fishing illegally for
toothfish, 45 miles northeast of Kerguelen Island in France?s
sub-Antarctic territory.  Greenpeace officials believe the vessel is
the Belize-registered Salvora, previously found guilty by Australian
authorities of poaching toothfish in October 1997.  On, Mar. 5, 1999,
the Greenpeace vessel was continuing to shadow the Salvora.[CNN]

SAFMC Grouper Ban.  On Mar. 1, 1999, the South Atlantic Fishery
Management Council?s two-month ban on harvest and sale of black
grouper, gag grouper, and red porgy went into effect to protect
spawning aggregations of these species.  This ban is scheduled annually
for the next 10 years to allow overfished stocks to recover.[Carteret

Coral Protection.  On Mar. 2, 1999, NOAA?s National Ocean Service
completed installation of the next-to-last Racon navigation beacon in
an 8-beacon radar navigation system stretching from Miami, FL, to
Loggerhead Key in the Dry Tortugas, designed to prevent ship groundings
on coral reefs.  Beacons were purchased as part of a settlement for
natural resources damages with the owners of the container ship Houston
that went aground in the FL Keys in 1997.  On Mar. 5-6, 1999, the U.S.
Coral Reef Task Force was scheduled to hod its second meeting in Maui,
HI.  At this meeting, the Task Force will review initial plans and
products developed by 5 Working Groups, receive input on the plans from
government and NGO partners, and determine the optimal strategies and
options for action.[personal communication, Naples Daily News]

Glacier Bay Fisheries.  In late February 1999, armed National Park
Service (NPS) rangers boarded 11 crab vessels in Glacier Bay National
Park to inform fishermen that park waters would soon be closed to
commercial fishing, as provided for in provisions of P.L. 105-277.
Concerns arose that NPS had begun enforcing new regulations earlier
than anticipated and with little notice.  On Mar. 4, 1999, AK Governor
Tony Knowles announced that AK intended to sue the federal government
to protect commercial and subsistence fishing within Glacier National
Park.[Anchorage Daily News, MSNBC]

ESA Petition for Puget Sound Fish.  In late February 1999, NMFS
received a petition to list as threatened or endangered under the
Endangered Species Act 18 species/populations of marine fishes in Puget
Sound and to designate critical habitat for each.  Petitioned species
include Pacific herring, Pacific cod, walleye pollock, Pacific hake,
and rockfishes.[personal communication]

South Korean Fishery Agreements.  On Feb. 6, 1999, the renegotiated
agreement between South Korea and Japan went into effect, with 957
South Korean fishing vessels resuming operations in the Japanese EEZ on
Feb. 22, 1999.  However, the South Korean Ministry of Maritime Affairs
and Fisheries announced that it will seek to remedy the omission of the
250 pair trawlers who were not considered among the 14 fishing
categories negotiated by South Korea.  The South Korean pair trawlers
claim they stand to lost about $24.5 million a year in lost harvest
from the Japanese EEZ and are seeking government compensation for such
loss.  On Mar. 1, 1999, South Korean officials announced that South
Korea will sign a fishery agreement with the Peoples Republic of China
late in March 1999 to establish orderly fisheries in waters between the
two countries.  Fisheries will be divided into 3 zones -- exclusive
management, joint management, and transitory, with the 20-mile wide
transitory zones to become each country?s exclusive fishing zones after
a 4-year joint management period.[Korean Herald]

On Feb. 26, 1999, the Sea Victory began towing the bow section seaward
across nearshore sandbars.  Late on Mar. 2, 1999, the towline between
the Sea Victory and the bow section of the New Carissa parted, in storm
conditions about 50 miles west of Coos Bay, OR.  The Unified Command
estimated the New Carissa bow section would be several miles west of
Newport, OR, early on Mar. 3, 1999.  On Mar. 3, 1999, the bow section
of the New Carissa ran aground off the mouth of Alsea Bay, OR.  A small
quantity of fuel oil was released on impact.  The OR Dept.  of
Agriculture alerted the public that mussel and clam harvesting were not
advised on beaches and in bays of Lane and Lincoln Counties.[ABC

The public comment period has been extended to Mar. 12, 1999.[NOAA
press release, Fed. Register]

On Feb.  24, 1999, the NC Marine Fisheries Commission selected 2
options that would establish a limited entry system and 2 options that
would allow relatively unlimited entry to send to public
hearings.[Carteret News-Times]


Yukon River Salmon Act Reauthorization.  On Mar. 11, 1999, the House
Resources Subcommittee on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans
has scheduled a hearing on reauthorization of the Yukon River Salmon
Act.[personal communication]

Gasoline Spill.  On Mar. 4, 1999, an overturned tanker truck spilled
about 5,000 gallons of gasoline into Beaver Creek, a tributary of the
Warm Springs River, OR.  In addition to being a major spawning ground
for wild chinook salmon, the spill occurred about 25 miles upstream of
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Warm Springs Hatchery.  To avoid a
fish kill at the hatchery, FWS officials released 750,000 yearling
chinook to swim downstream, and transferred another 830,000
sub-yearling spring chinook to a state hatchery.  Effects of the spill
on wild spring chinook and bull trout are unknown.[Portland Oregonian]

Steelhead Lawsuit.  On Mar. 3, 1999, a coalition of sport anglers and
environmentalists filed suit in U.S. District Court (San Francisco,
CA), seeking to force the federal government to list southern OR and
northern CA steelhead trout as a threatened species.[Contra Costa

Atlantic Salmon Threat?  On Mar. 1, 1999, the AK Dept. of Fish and Game
(ADF&G) released a 9-page white paper on Atlantic salmon outlining
concerns over the potential harmful effects of non-native Atlantic
salmon on wild salmon stocks.  AK officials expressed concern over the
possible lifting of the moratorium on expanding salmon farms into
northern British Columbia.  ADF&G's white paper includes several
recommendations for reducing the threat to wild salmon from Atlantic
salmon farming.[ADF&G press release]

Battle Creek Dam Decommissioning.  In late February 1999, the Pacific
Gas and Electric Company, NMFS, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S.
Bureau of Reclamation, and CA Dept. of Fish and Game agreed in
principle to pursue a project in the Battle Creek watershed in Shasta
and Tehama Counties, CA.  The proposed project includes decommissioning
5 diversion dams and transferring their water rights to instream use as
well as screenign and enlarging ladders at 3 other diversion dams.
This project anticipates restoring 42 miles of chinook salmon and
steelhead trout habitat.[Environment News Service]

Grand Coulee Dam Study.  In late February 1999, the World Commission on
Dams, meeting in Capetown, South Africa, decided to include Grand
Coulee Dam on the Columbia River in an independent study, due to be
completed in June 2000, of 10 major world dams for impacts on people,
the environment, and economies as well as impacts on sustainable
development.[Environment News Service]

Canadian Export of Salmon to Australia.  On Feb. 23, 1999, the World
Trade Organization's appointed Arbitrator reported a decision that the
reasonable period of time for implementing Dispute Settlement Board
recommendations allowing entry of Canadian salmon into Australia was 8
months, or by July 6, 1999.[personal communication]

On Mar. 1, 1999, Bellevue City Council approved $3.2 million in
conservation measures to benefit chinook salmon.  Elements include
reductions in water use, increased development setbacks from rivers and
streams, and habitat restoration activities.  On Mar. 2, 1999, NMFS and
FWS officials were reported to have agreed in principle to write
regulations for new species listings that would authorize local salmon
and trout conservation programs meeting federal standards.
Negotiations were to begin on Mar. 3, 1999, on regulations to establish
standards for federal approval of state programs.[Seattle Herald,
Seattle Times]


FWS FY2000 Budget.  On Mar. 4, 1999, the House Resources Subcommittee
on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans has scheduled an
oversight hearing on the FY 2000 budget request of the U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service.[personal communication]

On Feb.  24, 1999, scientists reported that non-toxic forms of
Pfiesteria had been identified in MD?s St. Martin and Big Annemessex
Rivers.  On Mar.  1, 1999, NC Governor Jim Hunt and Secretary of
Agriculture Dan Glickman signed an agreement to provide as much as $275
million in state and federal funds to NC farmers enrolling in the
Conservation Reserve program.  These farmers will plant grass and
hardwood trees on as much as 100,000 acres of land in the Neuse,
Tar-Pamlico, and Chowan River basins to improve water quality in the
Albemarle-Pamlico estuary.[Reuters, Raleigh News & Observer, Washington

On Mar. 4, 1999, the House Resources Subcommittee on Forests and Forest
Health was scheduled to hold an oversight hearing on the U.S. Forest
Service moratorium on road building in certain national forest areas
and on the status of the long-term transportation policy that the
Forest Service plans to develop during the freeze.[personal
communication, Trout Unlimited press release]


Cook Inlet Beluga Whales.  On Mar. 3, 1999, a coalition of conservation
groups and a former whale hunter filed a 40-page petition with NMFS
asking that Cook Inlet beluga whales be listed under the Endangered
Species Act as an endangered species.[Anchorage Daily News]

Canadian Sealing.  On Mar. 3, 1999, seven sealers appeared in court in
Gander, Newfoundland, on charges that they sealed in a whelping patch
or pupping area in 1998.  An additional 7 sealers are scheduled to
appear in court on various charges in Grand Falls, Newfoundland, on
Mar. 22, 1999.  Sealers are being prosecuted by the Dept. of Fisheries
and Oceans for sealing activities captured on videotape by animal
rights activists.[Canadian Press]

On Feb. 26, 1999, Mexican authorities reported that as many as 16 gray
whales have died along the northwestern Mexican coast since January
1999, including 4 in Magdalena Bay.  On Feb. 28, 1999, Mexican
scientists reported that the decomposing bodies of 180 sea lions had
been found in the northern Gulf of California in mid-February 1999.  In
addition, a 17th gray whale mortality was reported in Sinaloa state.
On Mar. 1, 1999, gray whale mortality was reported as 20 animals -- 7
in the Gulf of California and 13 in breeding lagoons on Baja
California?s west coast.[CNN, Contra Costa Times, BBC News, Reuters,
Chicago Tribune]

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