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Gulf of Mexico Council seeks input on fishery
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) is seeking inputs to solicit public hearings on two proposed fishery management plans (FMPs) a new aquaculture FMP.
The Council informed that the first amendment - Amendment 29 to the Reef Fish Fishery Management Plan – proposes to rationalize effort and reduce overcapacity in the commercial grouper and tilefish fisheries in order to achieve and maintain optimum yield (OY). In this amendment effort management approaches include permit endorsements, implementation of an Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Programme, proposed amendment 8 to the Spiny Lobster FMP examines various alternatives to restrict imports of spiny lobster into the United States to minimum conservation standards in and effort to achieve an increase in the spawning biomass of the stock and increase long-term yields from the fishery.
The Council also explained that the Aquaculture FMP will require persons to obtain a permit from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to participate in aquaculture by constructing an aquaculture facility in the EEZ of the Gulf of Mexico. According to the Council each permit application must comply with numerous permit conditions related to recordkeeping and operation of the facility.
It is said that these permit conditions will assure the facility has a minimal affect on the environment and on other fishery resources. There will be annual evaluation for the permit compliance with the conditions for the duration of the permit as the basis for renewal of the permit for the next year.
The Council appeal that the interested parties should participate in this public hearings process. These hearings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional fishery management councils established by the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976.
WorldFishingToday d. 02-07-2008