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License Agreement

West Coast Trawlers Win Buyback Victory in Spending Bill Expected to Pass this Week

Merry Christmas, West Coast Trawlers! The Pacific Coast groundfish buyback loan debacle is finally reaching a satisfactory conclusion.

Bipartisan support for language included in a spending bill the House passed, the Senate is expected to pass and the president is expected to sign this week will forgive roughly $10 million in accrued loan interest that was forced onto the West Coast groundfish trawl fleet due to National Marine Fisheries Service mismanagement, according to lawmakers.

The Secretary of Commerce declared the West Coast groundfish fishery an..

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NOAA: Rebound in Groundfish Leads to New Flexibility for Fishermen, Protection for Deep-Sea Corals

The changes made in West Coast groundfish fisheries adopted earlier this week are set to reopen access for fishermen to productive fishing grounds, NOAA said.

The groundfish population in the reopened areas have rebounded and the changes made by the fisheries will also protect deep-water habitat and deep-sea corals from bottom fishing.

The adjustments came into fruition in the form of an amendment to the Fishery Management Plan for groundfish off the West Coast. The Pacific Fishery Management...

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Russia May Propose Revision to Existing US-USSR Maritime Border Agreement

Russia may revise the existing U.S.-USSR agreement on the maritime border, which was signed on July 1, 1990, and established a demarcation line of economic zones and the continental shelf between Russia (as the successor to the USSR) and the U.S. in the Bering and Chukchi Seas, and territorial waters in a small section of the Bering Strait, according to some leading Russian state officials.

Signing of that agreement has led to serious losses to the Russian fishing industry since that time, they said, ...

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Cowcod is Latest West Coast Groundfish Stock Rebuilt; Only One Remains Listed as Overfished

An important West Coast groundfish stock that was formerly declared overfished has now been rebuilt ahead of schedule, the Pacific Fishery Management Council announced Tuesday.

The cowcod stock south of 40°10’ N. latitude, one of the rockfish species, has been managed under a strict rebuilding plan that severely constrained West Coast fisheries in California for two decades. Rebuilding cowcod was achieved through large area closures, non-retention rules and very low allowance for...

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Electronic Monitoring Systems Offer New Option for Tracking West Coast Groundfish Catches

Some vessels in the West Coast groundfish fleet will have the option of using cameras to monitor their catch beginning in 2021.

Two types of fishing vessels in the groundfish fishery can install cameras to monitor fishing activity and harvest instead of using human observers in the coming years. NMFS adopted the rule last week.

The final rule establishes standards for the video camera systems, which are typically activated automatically whenever fishing crews use equipment such as winches to haul in their gear.

The option to switch to ...

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Trivial and Mysterious Shortbelly Rockfish Threatens West Coast Trawl Fisheries

An unremarkable and non-marketable rockfish has been showing up in trawl nets off the West Coast this year and in high enough numbers that NMFS notified industry to avoid them.

Shortbelly rockfish is a fast-growing rockfish species that has a relatively short lifespan for a rockfish: roughly 30 years. They also mature quickly, within 5 years, and they grow to reach about 13.5 inches. Until 2018, they were rarely seen in large numbers as bycatch in trawl fisheries. This year, trawl fisheries already...

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Commercial Groundfish Harvester Fined $30,000 for Fishing During a Closed Time, Dumping Fish

Ricky Salder, a commercial groundfish harvester, has been found guilty of violating the Fisheries Act.

According to a news release from Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Sadler was accused of two Fisheries Act violations dating back to 2015 and 2016. Sadler reportedly failed to "provide assistance to a dock-side observer in Port Hardy by dumping Lingcod overboard prior to validation." In addition, he set gear and fishing in the closed Estevan Point Rockfish Conservation area, and failed to submit log books seven days after landings...

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OPINION: Increased VMS Ping Rates are Unnecessary Burden in Groundfish Fishery

An open letter to President Trump and Commerce Secretary Ross

One of your Administration's signature campaign promises was cutting onerous regulations that promote economic inefficiencies and stymie a business’s growth with no clear public benefit.

The Ventura County Commercial Fishermen’s Association would like to bring to the Administration’s attention an example of a proposed regulation looking for a nonexistent problem.

The Proposed Rule for Vessel Monitoring for the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery (Docket NO. NOAA-NMFS-2019-0093) is a regulation that is entirely unnecessary and would be ...

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Study: Six Eastern Bering Sea Stocks Appear Most Vulnerable to Climate Change

NOAA scientists and partners have released a Climate Vulnerability Assessment for groundfish, crabs and salmon in the Eastern Bering Sea. They looked at the potential impacts of changing climate, ocean temperatures and other environmental conditions on 36 stocks. Of these, four rockfish stocks, flathead sole and Tanner crab were determined to be the most vulnerable. Several other fish stocks were seen as potentially more resilient. This is because they may be able to move to areas with more favorable environmental conditions, such as...

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West Coast Cable Removal Could Open New Fishing Grounds

An old trans-Pacific cable system from Oregon to China is scheduled to be removed this month, which is good news for trawlers. Not only will removal open up new fishing grounds, but it will reduce the risk of a trawl net snagging a cable on the ocean floor.

The China-US (CHUS) system cables off Whisky Run, just south of Cape Arago near Coos Bay, Ore., are scheduled to be recovered Mertech Marine, a global cable submarine telecommunication cable recycling company based in South Africa...

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UrnerBarry's Summer 2019 Reporter Issue Released; Read It Online For Free Now

reporterA brand-new issue of UrnerBarry's Reporter is out now! The Summer 2019 issue is the annual market analysis edition, and just like previous years, the magazine is jam-packed with need-to-know information.

On the seafood side of things check out analysis pieces on the….

Shrimp Market: U.S. imports record volume of shrimp in 2018, prices feel pressure

Lobster Market: Life after the 25% Chinese tariff

King and Snow Crab Markets: King crab down 17% at retail; Unprecedented spread between...

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Can Magnuson Protect Fishing Communities? Decision Denying Protection to Adak, Atka Causes Doubt

In 2016 the North Pacific Council, in a decision approved by NMFS, created a 5000 ton pacific cod set aside in the Aleutian Islands district for BSAI cod, that required that amount to be landed West of 170 degrees (in either Adak or Atka), if processing plants there gave notice that they would operate.

The provision also had a failsafe, which was that if plants had not processed 1000 tons of cod by February 28, the set aside would be terminated and added back to...

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