NMFS Announces Procedure for Publication of 2001 TAC Specifications for Groundfish in the BSAI and the GOA

November 17, 2000 - 1:20 p.m.

Notice of a fishery management action.

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announces that it will publish 2001 total allowable catch (TAC) specifications for groundfish in the exclusive economic zone in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI) and in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) after NMFS completes its comprehensive evaluation of the effects of these groundfish fisheries pursuant to the Endangered Species Act, according to James W. Balsiger, Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS.

NMFS expects to complete its biological opinion evaluating the effects of the Alaska groundfish fisheries on threatened and endangered species by November 30, 2000. The biological opinion may require implementation of additional protective measures for endangered Steller sea lions and their critical habitat. Because the need for additional protective measures will not be known until completion of the biological opinion, NMFS has determined that it is impracticable to publish proposed, interim and final TAC specifications for the 2001 Alaska groundfish fisheries as NMFS has done prior to the commencement of the groundfish fisheries in past years. Instead, NMFS intends to publish one or more emergency rules implementing TAC specifications for the 2001 fisheries and implementing any additional Steller sea lion protective measures that may be necessary in accordance with the requirements of the biological opinion. NMFS will endeavor to publish these rules as quickly as possible to diminish disruption to the fisheries.

Fishermen are reminded that no groundfish harvest is authorized for the 2001 fishing year until NMFS publishes 2001 TAC specifications.

This information bulletin provides notice of a potential regulatory change. Do not rely upon it to guide you in complying with the regulatory change.

Last updated by Alaska Regional Office on February 11, 2019