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Endangered Species Act Section 7 Biological Opinion: the issuance of regulations and a letter of authorization to take marine mammals incidental to offshore oil and gas operations at the Northstar development in the U.S. Beaufort Sea, January 13, 2014-January 14, 2019
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    NMFS, Office of Protected Resources, Permits and Conservation Division (NMFS PRl) requested formal consultation on regulations and subsequent Letter of Authorization (LOA) under section 101(a)(5) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (MMPA), for offshore oil and gas facilities operations at the Northstar development in the Beaufort Sea, Alaska. This document constitutes NMFS's biological opinion on the effects of that action on threatened and endangered species in accordance with section 7 ofthe ESA. Specifically, this biological opinion analyzes the effects of the action on the 1) endangered bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus), and 2) threatened Beringia distinct population segment (DPS) of bearded seals (Erignathus barbatus nauticus), and 3) threatened Arctic subspecies of ringed seals (Phoca hispida hispida).
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