[acn-l] ~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/10/00 <~~ (fwd)

peter.unmack at asu.edu
Sat, 11 Mar 2000 14:50:50 -0700 (MST)

Just forwarding this along

From: FISH1IFR at aol.com
Date: Sat, 11 Mar 2000 16:25:09 EST
Subject: ~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/10/00 <~~
To: AFS at wyoming.com, ACN-L at pinetree.org, crab-l at ios.bc.ca,
FishingForum at onelist.com, fishhabitat at mail.orst.edu,
oceancoalition at onelist.com, salmon at nw1.riverdale.k12.or.us

~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/10/00 <~~

VOL 1, NO. 10 10 March 2000

FISHERY LAW: Maryland Congressman Wayne Gilchrest today, 10
March, introduced a measure, the Fisheries Recovery Act, to amend and
reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation & Management
Act. The bill was announced on Thursday by Gilchrest and the Marine
Fish Conservation Network at a Washington press conference. The
legislation is intended to further strengthen the nation's main fishery law.
The new bill amends the Magnuson-Stevens Act by:

* Making bycatch reduction a priority. Would require the regional
fishery councils to develop an accurate bycatch reporting system and
establish bycatch reduction quotas.

* Improving protection of essential fish habitat (EFH). Would require
the regional councils to ensure new fishing gear or practices will not
adversely affect EFH.

* Reforming the regional fishery councils. Would require broader
council membership to ensure a balance of commercial and recreational
fishing and conservation interests.

* Establishing a mandatory observer program in each fishery. Would
require the collection of reliable data from observations of catches at-sea
necessary for fishery management.

* Conserving marine ecosystems. Would require regional councils to
develop comprehensive fisheries ecosystem plans to cover major fisheries
in each region.

* Ensuring application of precautionary fisheries management. Would
require the regional councils to prepare fishery management plans that err
on the side of conservation absent reliable fisheries data.

The announcement of the bill came on the same day the House
Resources Committee held a hearing on Magnuson-Stevens
reauthorization; the Senate has already held a series of reauthorization
hearings in the field. Among those testifying at the House hearing was
Paul Pelligrini, a Eureka fisherman and president of the Humboldt
Fishermen's Marketing Association. For more information on the
Thursday House hearing or the Fisheries Recovery Act, contact the
Marine Fish Conservation Network at: mfcn at mindspring.com.

A summary of PCFFA's Magnuson-Stevens Act testimony submitted at
the Senate hearing in Seattle appeared in the February issue of
Fishermen's News. It can also be viewed on PCFFA's website at:
http://www.pond.net/~pcffa. Also posted is the testimony by Paul
Pelligrini on the EFH portions of SFA..

fishing nations throughout the world attempt to cope with many
overfished stocks and excess fishing capacity, the F/V Atlantic Dawn was
launched at a shipyard in Kristiansund, Norway on 12 February for its
Irish owners, reports the U.K.. journal, Fishing News (18 February issue).
The new vessel is 114.6 meters in length, and 13,5000 gross tonnage,
making her the world's largest factory trawler. Atlantic Dawn is rigged
for both stern trawling and purse seining and is owned by Atlantic Dawn,

In the same issue of Fishing News, is an article by Derek McIver, a
member of the Highlands & Islands Fishermen's Association, writing "that
quotas are not protecting stocks as intended, but instead are passing the
rights to catch fish from public to private hands, squeezing out small boat
fishermen and destroying stocks." McIver argues in his article, "Greed
Has Taken Over," (p.8) that "more money can be made by speculators
leasing quota to fishermen than can be made by the fishermen." For more
information from the 18 February issue of Fishing News, visit the
publication's website at: http://www.fishingnews.co.uk .

FRANKENFISH IS UPON US: On Tuesday, 7 March, Elliot Entis,
president of Aqua Bounty, a leading company in the field of genetically
engineered seafood, said his firm will begin selling the first genetically
modified (GMO) salmon eggs to fish farms worldwide by late spring or
early summer. Entis' comments were made during an exclusive interview
with Dan McGovern of Fishmonger News Network at the International
Boston Seafood Show. According to Entis, Aqua Bounty's genetically
altered fish have a growth rate of up to 600 percent higher than their
non-transgenic cousins and can reach harvest size in about 16-18 months
compared with a typical grow-out period of three years. For more
information, visit Fishmonger.com's website at:

The news about Aqua Bounty's sale of the genetically modified salmon
eggs, follows on the report of 26 February that New Zealand King Salmon
Co. Ltd., agreeing to dispose of all of its genetically engineered king
salmon that could grow three times faster than natural chinooks and
potentially reach a size of 550 pounds. In response to the 6 March Time
magazine article, "Make Way For Frankenfish," (pp.62-63), California
State Senator Tom Hayden on 3 March wrote a letter to the Director of the
State's Department of Fish & Game, "requesting a brief snapshot of what,
if anything, the Department is doing to evaluate and regulate the
environmental consequences of this technological revolution...." Hayden
went on saying, "Concern for corporate profit, or the theory that bigger is
always better, should not supercede the need for research, and regulation
on issues that will affect the fate of species for the rest of time." For a
copy of the Senator's letter, call his office at: (916) 445-1353.

FOR VENTURA: "Sierra to the Pacific: Fishery Management and
Restoration in the New Millennium" is the title for the symposium and
34th Annual Meeting of the California-Nevada Chapter of the American
Fisheries Society (AFS). The meeting will include sessions on essential
marine and freshwater habitats, current marine research, and nearshore
fisheries. 30 March - 1 April at the Holiday Inn in Ventura. For more
information, contact Elise Holland, Cal-Neva Chapter President-elect at:
Elise.Holland at tpl.org

of Engineers published in the Federal Register its long overdue five new
Nationwide Permits (NWPs) for filling wetlands. With an estimated 85
percent of the nation's commercially valuable fish being wetland
dependent during some part of their life, the issuance of these new and
modified permits (six are modified under the notice) has implications for
the fishing industry. The new permits now have an upper limit of acre
compared to the three acres of fill that was allowed in the previous permits
the new and modified ones replace. For more information on the NWP
notice in the Federal Register, go to:
http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/fedreg/a000309c.html. An excellent
critique of the program was prepared by David Ortman; he can be reached
at: deom at jps.net.

ENDANGERED RIVER: At a 9 March Washington press conference,
American Rivers' released its report on the nation's most endangered
rivers, with the Columbia tributary, the Snake River, at the top.
Controversy is currently surrounding the fate of the river with scientists,
as well as fishing and conservation groups, who support removal of four
dams on the lower Snake. Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber and New
Mexico Congressman Tom Udall are also proponents of breaching the
dams to save the salmon. On the other hand, the Governors of Montana
and Idaho, bowing to agribusiness interests, and Washington Governor
Gary Locke and Texas Governor George W. Bush, siding with irrigators
and subsidized tug and barge operators, have weighed in against removing
the dams to save the salmon.

According to recent economic studies, dam removal on the lower
Snake is less costly than other options for salmon recovery, such as new
restrictions on farming, logging, and commercial fishing. Measures such
as acquiring water from Idaho irrigators to speed migration of fish to the
sea and revamping the dams to comply with the Clean Water Act would
cost more than $500 million annually and eliminate more than 4,000 jobs.
The Clinton Administration is legally obligated to decide this year
whether to remove the four dams as part of its Columbia River salmon
recovery plan. For a copy of the American Rivers report on endangered
rivers, visit: http://www.amrivers.org.

While the Snake River dams are getting most attention, Environmental
News Service reported on 6 March that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
is quietly moving ahead with a program to dismantle or alter some of the
75,000 smaller dams and water obstructions in waterways across the
country. This year the agency has $900,000 to expend for fish passage
projects in seven watersheds in 12 states, removing four dams and other
impediments and restoring access to more than 1,000 miles of habitat for
fish. Last year, the program completed restoration projects in 14 states
where some 23,000 acres of riparian, streambank and wetland habitats
were restored and 1,000 miles of river were improved or reopened to
spawning and rearing habitat. In 2001, the program target is to restore
32,000 acres of wetland and riparian habitat and another 1,000 miles
of stream habitat. For those interested, the 7 March issue of the San Jose
Mercury-News, carried a comprehensive article on dam removal, "To
Help Save Fish , Officials Consider Razing Some Dams," by Karen Levy.
To review the Levy article on dam removal, visit the Mercury-News
website at:
http://www.mercurycenter.com/premium/scitech/docs/dams07.htm .

THIS MONTH: Blackwell Science has announced it will begin
publication this month of a new journal Fish and Fisheries. According to
the publisher, its is a "peer-reviewed journal focusing on topics of major
importance internationally within the area of fish biology, fisheries and
aquaculture, bringing together subjects including physiology, behaviour,
ecology, genetics and evolution of fishes, conservation and exploitation."
For information on this quarterly, visitBlackwell Science's website at:

THAT COULD HELP FISH: On 7 March, California voters passed two
billion dollar plus bond acts that each provide funding to help restore fish
habitat and rebuild fish stocks. Propostion 12, the Safe Neighborhood
Parks, Clean Water, Clean Air & Coastal Protection Bond Act, provides a
billion dollars to, among other things, habitat restoration and coastal
protection (including funds for the State's Coastal Conservancy).
Information on Proposition 12 can be found at: http://www.safeparks.org.
The other measure passed was the $1.97 billion Safe Drinking Water,
Clean Water, Watershed Protection & Flood Protection Bond Act. This
measure is intended to, among other things, protect wetlands and other
natural habitats, and increase groundwater storage, water conservation,
and water reuse. More information on Proposition 13 can be found at:

PCFFA has been supportive of increased funding of fish recovery and
fish habitat protection, including necessary in-stream and in-Delta water
flows and improved fish passage. The concern, however, it had with
Proposition 13 (although it supported the bond act), is much the same as it
has had with increased federal money for salmon restoration in coastal
watersheds, in the Columbia and in the San Francisco Bay and
Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta. Money alone will not solve the fish
problems, according to PCFFA. Proposition 13 may not do much to make
California's water supply more dependable or help the fish absent some
long-overdue changes to California water law, including statutes
mandating statewide groundwater management and growth planning
around available water supplies, argues the federation. In the Columbia
basin, billions have been expended for salmon recovery but there has been
little success due to the failure of the federal government to change dam
operations. The same fear holds true for California where millions
are being spent to restore salmon habitat in coastal watersheds, but the
restoration is likely to be short term and of little value absent a change in
California's forest practice rules. The issue of just throwing money at
a problem without corresponding reforms in law or strong enforcement of
existing laws was raised by IFR's Molly Thomas speaking on the
announcement of the Gilchrest Fisheries Recovery Act, on Thursday.

"Fish don't swim in money!," remarked Thomas. "Sure more funds are
needed for restoration and research and to provide immediate relief for
some fishing families, but the money won't do much good unless its
accompanied by change and reform. That's why the Gilchrest bill is so
important. That's why strong enforcement of the Clean Water Act and the
Endangered Species Act is so important."

Northern Pacific Journal, the Russian fishery publication, features an
article in English on the operations of the U.S.-flagged factory trawler
American Monarch in the Russian Far East. To view this article and
others in the last issue (No.2(8)/99) go to The Northern Pacific Journal
website at: http://np.rybvod.kamchatka.su.

OPTIONS FOR 2000: At its 6-10 March meeting in Sacramento, the
Pacific Fishery Management Council adopted options to submit for public
review for management this season of the ocean salmon commercial and
recreational fishery offshore California, Oregon and Washington.
Following public hearings on the options, the PFMC will select at its April
meeting in Portland a final recommended season to submit for approval to
the Department of Commerce. For more information, visit the Pacific
Council's website at: http://www.pcouncil.org.

In other salmon news, the provincial government of British Columbia
announced on 2 March it is dropping its $235 million lawsuit against the
U.S. for violating the Pacific Salmon Treaty. The lawsuit was filed in
U.S. District Court in Seattle by former Premier Glen Clark, accusing the
U.S. of overfishing and failing to meet treaty requirements for sharing and
conserving salmon stocks. The case was dismissed by the U.S. District
Court, holding that British Columbia lacked standing. The province
subsequently appealed the district court decision. "We have decided to
spend no more money in court and attempt to use this decision as a
symbol of our intent to try to enter a more cooperative regime," said B.C.
Fisheries Minister Corky Evans, announcing the decision to drop the

ANCHORAGE: PCFFA has begun a fund raising drive to support the
lawsuit it has brought against the California Coastal Commission, PCFFA
v. California Coastal Commission, over the approval of four abalone
mariculture operations in the middle of a busy and crowded anchorage at
Pillar Point Harbor, near Half Moon Bay, California. The California
Coastal Act states that commercial fishing is a coastal dependent use and
commercial fishing facilities within the coastal zone shall be protected
and, where feasible, upgraded. The PCFFA contends the Commission
violated its own act when it permitted in July the placement of the abalone
"farms" in the anchorage. Space for an estimated 40 to 70 fishing vessels
will be lost. The Pillar Point Harbor is used by salmon and albacore
vessels from up and down the Pacific Coast, with its anchorage often
filled with fishing boats during the spring and fall of the year. PCFFA is
represented in this lawsuit by Oakland environmental attorney, Mary
Hudson. Persons wishing to contribute can do so by making checks
payable to: PCFFA Legal Defense (mark on them Pillar Point Anchorage
litigation) and mailing to: PCFFA Legal Defense Fund, P.O. Box 29370,
San Francisco, CA 94129-0370.

SOON END UP IN NON-FISHERMEN HANDS: At a meeting this week
in Ottawa of the second General Assembly of the Canadian Council of
Professional Fish Harvesters, Vancouver Island salmon troller Guy
Johnson told the delegates that Canadian fishing licenses will soon be
owned by men in business suits instead of fishermen unless changes are
made to Canada's fisheries laws. Delegates to the convention were given
the example of the Pacific herring roe fishery where 70 percent of the
landed value this year of the fish will be eaten up by license-leasing fees
paid to non-fishermen.

"By allowing investors and speculators to buy-up licenses and rent
them back to working fishermen, the government is draining money out of
coastal communities," said Johnson. "By undermining owner-operators,
the present license holders don't have a long-term stake in the fishery. All
they [speculators] are interested in is getting as large a return on their
investment as quickly as possible."

Earle McCurdy of Newfoundlands's Fish Food & Allied Workers, who
was elected for a second term as president of the Council, said the
demographics of the fishery are such that a majority of fishermen will be
retiring over the next 15 years. He said with the existing loopholes in
Canadian law, those licenses could easily end-up in the hands of fish
processing companies or speculators with no attachment to the fishing
industry. For more information, contact the Canadian Council of
Professional Fish Harvesters at their e-mail address: ccfh at fox.nstn.ca.

GOT NEWS?: Submit news items to Molly Thomas, editor at:
ifrfish at aol.com or call the IFR office with the news and a source at
either: (415) 561-FISH (Southwest Office) or (541) 689-2000 (Northwest

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