Biological Opinion on the Authorization of Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands Groundfish Fisheries and Gulf of Alaska Groundfish Fisheries Based on the Respective Fishery Management Plans as Modified by Amendments 61 and 70
This opinion is based on an evaluation of both the direct and indirect effects of amendments to the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Area (BSAI) and Gulf of Alaska (GOA) Fishery Management Plans on Steller sea lions and their critical habitat, together with the effects of other activities that are interrelated or interdependent.
This consultation considers whether the effects of these actions are likely to jeopardize the continued existence of two populations of Steller sea lions or cause the destruction or adverse modification of their designated critical habitat. For all other listed species in the action area, NOAA Fisheries OSF has made a determination of either “no effect” or “not likely to adversely affect.” For further information on other species not considered here, see the Biological Assessment prepared by OSF for these actions (NMFS 2001).
This document is the product of a consultation pursuant to Section 7(a)(2) of the ESA and implementing regulations found at 50 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 402. It evaluates three actions:
- Implementation of amendments 70/70 to the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Area (BSAI) and Gulf of Alaska (GOA) Fishery Management Plans (FMPs); Steller sea lion conservation measures for the pollock, Pacific cod, and Atka mackerel fisheries of the BSAI and GOA.
- Implementation of BSAI and GOA FMP amendments 61/61; final regulations to implement the American Fisheries Act of 1998.
- Parallel fisheries in waters managed by the State of Alaska; fisheries for Pacific cod, pollock, and Atka mackerel that are considered part of the federal fishery yet occur in State waters (0-3 nm from shore)
Action Agency: National Marine Fisheries Service Alaska Region, Sustainable Fisheries Division