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In the News
Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 15
North Atlantic Right Whale skim feeding in Cape Cod Bay. Photo by Brian Skerry.
- Bills in the House and Senate would set up a $5 million annual grant program to fund projects related to the conservation of North Atlantic right whales. Congressman Moulton of Massachusetts is the primary sponsor of the House bill, and Senator Booker of New Jersey is the primary sponsor of the Senate bill. Of the House bill, the New England Aquarium said, “This proposed bill is a great start toward finding solutions that protect both whales and the fishing industry. It calls for science-led conservation efforts with all stakeholders working cooperatively. Researchers, fishermen and government officials coming together is the only way that sustainable change will happen.”
- AIS, Inc. has been awarded a contract to provide Northeast fisheries observer. The contract from NOAA Fisheries is for $50 million over a five-year period. AIS, Inc. has experience employing observers along the U.S. East Coast and in Alaska. According to a press release from NOAA Fisheries, “The contract is responsible for recruiting and maintaining a cadre of certified observers and for deploying them to obtain the required number of observed days for each fishery.”
- NOAA Fisheries is collecting comments on potential changes to the lobster fishery. The agency is considering requiring federal lobster permit holders to report catch for each trip, as well as expanding offshore sampling programs. Comments will be accepted through July 16.
- The New England Fishery Management Council is still seeking comments on Amendment 8 to the Atlantic herring fishery management plan. The last two public hearings are next week: Chatham, MA on June 19 and an online webinar on June 20. Written comments are also accepted through June 25.
- According to a new study published in Science, “the world’s system for allocating fish stocks is being outpaced by the movement of fish species in response to climate change.” Analyzing 892 stocks from around the globe, researchers found that more than 70 countries will see stock shifts by 2100 given current climate change trajectories. The researchers advise that countries work together to minimize conflict.
- An AP investigation has found that the “sustainable seafood distributor” Sea to Table has not been living up to its commitment. Sea to Table says that its products are “wild and directly traceable to a U.S. dock – and sometimes the very boat that brought it in,” reports the Portland Press Herald. But, DNA tests have recently traced some Sea to Table products to foreign fisheries. They have also been linked to markets with labor abuses, bycatch issues, and illegal fishing practices. Sea to Table owner, Sean Dimin, told the Portland Press Herald, “We take this extremely seriously.” Read more here.