[MARMAM] NOAA Reopens Comment Period on Fish Imports and Marine Mammals
Michael.Simpkins at noaa.gov
Thu Jul 8 08:23:35 PDT 2010
Dear MARMAM list members,
NOAA has reopened the comment period on options for implementing parts
of the Marine Mammal Protection Act that address the incidental catch of
marine mammals in foreign fisheries.
The Federal Register notice (available at
http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2010/pdf/2010-16066.pdf) describes the
options the United States is considering for assessing whether foreign
fisheries whose products are exported to the United States meet U.S.
standards to protect marine mammals while fishing. The notice also
describes options for working with countries to reduce their fisheries’
effects on marine mammals through capacity building, training, and
“A large portion of the fish Americans consume is imported,” said Eric
Schwaab, NOAA assistant administrator for NOAA’s Fisheries Service.
“With this notice, we are looking for ways to lessen the effects of
fishing on marine mammals worldwide, and to level the playing field for
our own fishermen, who take many protective measures when fishing to
ensure the survival of marine mammal species.”
Commercial fishermen in the United States must comply with the Marine
Mammal Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, and other laws and
regulations that often specify what kind of fishing gear they can use,
as well as how, when, and where fishing can take place, in order to
reduce the number of marine mammals killed or injured by fishing gear.
However, marine mammals are found around the world and interact with a
wide variety of fisheries. International collaboration through exchange
of technology and information may help control and minimize effects on
In this initial phase, NOAA is looking to gather as much information on
the subject as possible. If NOAA moves forward in creating regulations
on this subject, the public will have additional opportunities to comment.
Members of the public are invited to comment by 5 p.m. Eastern Time on
August 30, 2010 via electronic comment at www.regulations.gov (search
for document NOAA_FRDOC_0001-1215); fax (301-713–2313); or mail (mail
to: Director, Office of International Affairs, Attn: MMPA Fish Import
Provisions, NMFS, F/IA, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910).
Mike Simpkins, Ph.D.
Office of International Affairs, NOAA Fisheries
1315 East-West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 301-713-9090 x180
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