| Final environmental assessment, regulatory impact review, and final regulatory flexibility analysis for Amendment 6 to the 2006 consolidated Atlantic highly migratory species fishery management plan: commercial shark management measures - :12928 | National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) | National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
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Final environmental assessment, regulatory impact review, and final regulatory flexibility analysis for Amendment 6 to the 2006 consolidated Atlantic highly migratory species fishery management plan: commercial shark management measures
  • Published Date:
    2015
Filetype[PDF-3.25 MB]


Details:
  • Corporate Authors:
    United States, National Marine Fisheries Service., Highly Migratory Species Division, ; United States, National Marine Fisheries Service., Office of Protected Resources, ; United States, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration., Office of Program Planning and Integration,
  • Description:
    In September 2010, NMFS published an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) to request public comment on potential adjustments to the regulations governing the Atlantic shark fisheries to address specific issues such as commercial landings that exceed quotas, declining numbers of fishing permits since limited access was implemented, complex regulations, derby fishing conditions due to small quotas and short seasons, increasing numbers of regulatory discards, and declining market prices and to identify specific goals for management of these fisheries in the future. Based on the comments received on the ANPR, in September 2011, NMFS published a Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an FMP Amendment that would consider catch shares for the Atlantic shark fisheries. Based on comments received on the ANPR and NOI, in April 2014, NMFS released a Predraft for Amendment 6 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP) that included management options for changes to regional quota and permit structures. On May, 27 2014, NMFS published another NOI announcing its intent to prepare an Environmental Assessment instead of an Environmental Impact Statement and that the agency was moving away from the catch share concept for this particular Amendment. On January 20, 2015, NMFS released the Draft EA and published a proposed rule (80 FR 2648) for Amendment 6 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP, and the public comment period was open until April 3, 2015. This Final EA analyzes the potential environmental impacts related to (1) permit stacking (2) adjusting the large coastal sharks (LCS) trip limit for shark directed limited access permit holders; (3) establishing a management boundary in the Atlantic region, (4) creating sub-regional quotas in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions for LCS and small coastal sharks (SCS); (5) modifying the LCS and SCS quota linkages; (6) implementing total allowable catches and adjusting the non-blacknose SCS commercial quotas in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions based on the 2013 Atlantic sharpnose and bonnethead sharks stock assessments; and (7) modifying upgrading restrictions for shark permit holders.

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