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National Marine Fisheries Service Endangered Species Act Section 7(a)(2) Biological Opinion Construction and Maintenance of Chesapeake Bay Entrance Channels and use of sand burrow areas for beach nourishment
Filetype[PDF-4.60 MB]

  • Alternative Title:
    ACOE_Norfolk_Construction and Maintenance of Chesapeake Bay Channels
  • Description:
    Consultation between USACE and NMFS on effects of dredging in the Chesapeake Bay navigation channels and borrow areas has been ongoing since the 1980s. We have completed numerous consultations, culminating in four separate biological opinions, most of which have been reinitiated multiple times (see below for detailed history). In all of these Opinions we concluded that the proposed dredging was likely to adversely affect, but not likely to jeopardize any species of listed sea turtle and was not likely to adversely affect any species of listed whales. In February 2012, we published two final rules listing five Distinct Population Segments (DPS) of Atlantic sturgeon. The New York Bight, Chesapeake Bay, South Atlantic and Carolina DPSs are listed as endangered and the Gulf of Maine DPS is listed as threatened. Reinitiation of consultation is required if: (a) the amount or extent of taking specified in the ITS is exceeded; (b) new information reveals effects of these actions that may affect listed species or critical habitat in a manner or to an extent not previously considered; (c) any of the identified actions are subsequently modified in a manner that causes an effect to the listed species that was not considered in the Opinion; or (d) a new species is listed or critical habitat designated that may be affected by the identified actions (50 CFR § 402.16).

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