Biological Opinion on Quintillion Subsea Operations, LLC, Proposed Subsea Fiber Optic Cable-laying Activities and Proposed Issuance of an Incidental Harassment Authorization
NOAA Fisheries Alaska Region's biological opinion on the proposed actions and their effects on endangered and threatened species and designated critical habitat for those species in the Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort Seas, Alaska.
This Opinion considers the effects of the proposed subsea cable-laying project and the associated proposed issuance of an IHA. These actions may affect the following species and designated critical habitat: bowhead (Balaena mysticetus), fin (Balaenoptera physalus), humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), blue (Balaenoptera musculus), North Pacific right (Eubalaene japonica), sperm (Physeter microcephalus), and western North Pacific gray (Eschrichtius robustus) whales, western Distinct Population Segment (DPS) Steller sea lions, bearded (Erignathus barbatus nauticus) and Arctic ringed (Phoca hispida hispida) seals, Steller sea lion critical habitat and North Pacific right whale critical habitat. We concur with the action agencies’ determinations that this action is not likely to adversely affect the following species or critical habitats: blue, North Pacific right, sperm, and western North Pacific gray whales, western DPS Steller sea lions, North Pacific right whale critical habitat, and Steller sea lion critical habitat (see section 5.1).