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Subject: CRS Summary - Part 2/4
From: Aldo-Pier Solari <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Academic forum on fisheries ecology and related topics <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sat, 21 Jun 1997 06:29:03 GMT

text/plain (146 lines)

From: Kate Wing <[log in to unmask]>

Chesapeake Bay.  On  June  3,  1997, the state-federal Chesapeake
Bay Program released an interjurisdictional crab management  plan
for  Chesapeake  Bay, focusing on restoration of seagrass beds to
provide habitat for juvenile  crabs  and continued improvement of
water quality by nutrient reduction.  The  coordinated  plan  was
developed  with  assistance  from  a  Bi-State Blue Crab Advisory
Committee.  [Assoc Press]

CITES Oversight Hearing.  On  June  3,  1997, the House Resources
Subcommittee on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans  has
tentatively  scheduled  an  oversight  hearing  on  the  biennial
meeting of Parties to CITES (Convention on International Trade in
Endangered  Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) in Zimbabwe later in
June.  [personal communication]

Atlantic Bluefin Tuna.  On June 2, 1997, NMFS issued a final rule
dividing several Atlantic  bluefin  tuna recreational quotas into
north and south regional subquotas (53% north and 47%  south)  to
deal  with  changing  fishery patterns; requiring annual permits;
and implementing  minimum  size  requirements.   In addition, the
regulations require self-reporting of bluefin tuna  landed  under
the Angling category.  {On June 12, 1997, NMFS announced that the
Angling  category  fishery  for  school,  large school, and small
medium Atlantic bluefin tuna would  open June 13, 1997, but would
close in the southern area (from Delaware southward) late on June
27, 1997, for  large  school  or  small  medium  bluefin.}  [NMFS

Fishing Vessel Manufacturer Liability.  On June 2, 1997, the U.S.
Supreme Court decided, by a 6-3 margin, that vessel manufacturers
may have expanded liability for defects in vessels they construct
to  include  damages  to or loss of equipment added to the vessel
after purchase.  [Assoc Press]

Fishing Industry Subsidies.  On  June  2, 1997, at the conclusion
of  a  two-day  workshop  on  policy  recommendations  to  ensure
sustainable fisheries, the World Wide Fund  for  Nature  and  the
United Nations Environment Program jointly called for a reduction
of more than $50 billion in subsidies estimated to be expended by
nations  worldwide  annually  in excess of fish harvest revenues.
The organizations cited this  as  a major stimulus in encouraging
uncontrolled overcompetitive fishing that depletes  fish  stocks.
[Dow Jones News, Assoc Press]

Toothfish  Overfishing.   On  May  30,  1997,  the parties at the
Antarctic Treaty consultative meeting in Christchurch, NZ, called
upon China to sign  the  1980  Convention  on the Conservation of
Antarctic Marine Living Resources.  Recent information  indicates
that  as  much  as  100,000  metric  tons  of toothfish may be in
storage and the price for  this product has collapsed.  [Reuters,
Assoc Press, Dow Jones News]

Atlantic Swordfish Drift Gillnet Fishery Closure  Extension.   On
May  30,  1997,  NMFS  announced  an  extension  of the emergency
closure of the Atlantic  swordfish  drift  gillnet fishery for an
additional 180 days,  through  Nov.   26,  1997.   The  emergency
closure  was  extended  after NMFS issued a biological opinion on
May 29, 1997, concluding that Atlantic swordfish, shark, and tuna
driftnet  fisheries  were  likely  to  jeopardize  the  continued
existence  of  the  North  Atlantic  right  whale.   [NMFS  press

Abalone Sting.  On May 29, 1997, three CA residents were arrested
by CA  fisheries  enforcement  officers  culminating  a year-long
investigation  after  searches  revealed  1.25  tons  of  illegal
processed abalone, valued at more than $230,000.  The individuals
were exporting the  abalone  to  East  Asian  markets,  and  were
charged with felony conspiracy.  [Santa Rosa (CA) Press Democrat]

New  England  Code  of Conduct.  On May 28, 1997, the New England
Fishery Management Council remitted a voluntary, non-binding Code
of  Conduct  to  a  Responsible  Fishing  Committee  for  further
discussion after the Council tabled  a motion to accept the Code.
The proposed Code  urges  commercial  fishermen  to  protect  the
fishery  resource,  to  ensure  high-quality products, to advance
scientific   knowledge,   to   keep   abreast   of  technological
innovations, and to develop mutual  respect  and  trust.   [Assoc

Horseshoe  Crab  Harvest  Ban.   On  May  28,  1997,  NJ Governor
Christie  Whitman  authorized  the  NJ  Dept.   of  Environmental
Protection  to  impose  an   immediate   ban  on  horseshoe  crab
harvesting.  Gov.  Whitman was  expected  to  sign  an  emergency
order  prohibiting the harvest of horseshoe crabs for 2 months to
protect migrating shorebirds.  [Assoc Press]

Lobster Poaching.   On  May  28,  1997,  the  Maine Marine Patrol
confiscated 25 unmarked, large, offshore lobster traps near Mount
Desert Rock, allegedly set in ME waters illegally by out-of-state
vessels.  More than 100 additional illegal  traps  were  to  have
been confiscated on May 29.  [Assoc Press]

NC  Commercial  Fishery Moratorium.  On May 27, 1997, the package
of fishery reform measures --  including  a  cap on the number of
commercial fishing licenses, increased commercial fishing license
fees,  a  reduction  in  membership  of  the   Marine   Fisheries
Commission  from  17  to 9, strengthened fishery law enforcement,
restrictions on the  type  of  net  that  could  be fished, and a
mechanism for  involving  various  environmental  commissions  in
drafting  plans to improve fish habitat -- was approved by the NC
House's  Finance  Committee.   On  June  3,  1997,  the  NC House
tentatively approved the package of fishery reform measures by  a
vote  of  115-1.   An amendment to ban trawling and seining in NC
sounds and estuaries was defeated  by  a  vote of 94-21.  On June
10, 1997, the House voted 116-1 on final approval for the package
of fishery reform measures.  [Assoc Press]

PG&E Lawsuit Settlement.  On May 27, 1997, Pacific Gas & Electric
Co.  officials reached a  $14  million  settlement  with  the  CA
Attorney  General  concerning  alleged  incomplete and misleading
PG&E data involving fish larvae  mortality by their Diablo Canyon
plant's water cooling system, near San Luis Obispo, CA.   Of  the
settlement,   $3.7   million   will  be  used  for  environmental
protection and  enhancement  in  the  Morro  Bay  area,  and $2.5
million will fund San Jose State Univ.'s  mussel  watch  program.
[Assoc Press]

AK  Tax  Loan  Program  Terminating.  On May 25, 1997, AK's state
loan program to assist  commercial  fishermen in paying off debts
to the U.S.  Internal Revenue Service will terminate, having  not
been  extended  by  the  State  Legislature.   Under  this 3-year
program,  about  220  fishermen  obtained  loans  for  IRS debts.
[Assoc Press]

AK Herring  Fishery  Vessel  Seizures.   In  late  May  1997,  AK
fisheries  enforcement officials seized 4 out-of-state commercial
herring  vessels  and  charged  their  operators  with  illegally
fishing in a  Norton  Sound  herring  fishery.   The Norton Sound
fishery  is  "super-exclusive":   vessels   fishing   there   are
ineligible  to  fish in other AK herring fisheries.  The 4 seized
vessels are alleged  to  have  participated  in  the Norton Sound
fishery as well as other AK herring fisheries  this  spring.   AK
officials  will  seek  forfeiture  of  the  4  fishing vessels in
addition to possible  jail  sentences  and  fines  for the vessel
operators.  [Assoc Press]

Cause of Shrimp Death?  TX Parks and Wildlife  Dept.   biologists
are  working to determine the cause of death of 1,174 adult white
shrimp at the Texas  Agriculture Experiment Station, Flour Bluff,
TX, between May 14 and  May  21,  1997.   Biologists  fear  Asian
"white   spot"   disease  may  have  been  responsible,  but  are
conducting DNA tests to identify the cause.  [Assoc Press]
End of Part 2/4

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