Draft Categorical Exclusion for the Proposed Rule to Revise Monitoring Requirements for Pot Catcher/Processors Participating in Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands Groundfish Fisheries
This action revises the monitoring requirements for the pot catcher/processor (CP) fleet participating in Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands (BSAI) groundfish fisheries.
This action revises the monitoring requirements for the pot catcher/processor (CP)s fleet participating in Bering Sea/Aleutian Island (BSAI) groundfish fisheries. The proposed measures include two new requirements and additional voluntary measures to improve observer data quality. This action would require participants to carry at least one Level 2 observer deployed at all times. A level 2 observer holds an Observer Certification and has completed 60 data collection days and met expectation on their last cruise. The action would also require participants to attend pre-cruise meetings when notified. Additionally, NOAA Fisheries proposes regulations to clarify requirements such as equipment certification and testing when any of the following voluntary monitoring options are used: observer sampling stations, motion-compensating platform and flow scales, or carrying additional observers.