UFA Update: September 1, 2017

Registration is open for Pacific Marine Expo. NOV 16 – 18, 2017 – make your travel plans now!

Job opening – UFA Executive Director – Deadline to apply – September 22, 5:00 P.M.

Job announcement

Job description & application instructions

The Fall 2017 UFA meeting will be held September 25 – 27 at the Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association in Kenai.

UFA meetings are open to members and invited guests.

Join UFA at the meeting for a free hat and hoodie!

Support UFA Business members on our website HERE.

Help support UFA today! Visit ‘Become a Member’ on our website to see the various membership levels and benefits.

What better way to enjoy the Labor Day holiday – Wild Alaska Seafood thanks to your hard work!

Contents:

Inclusion of an item does not mean that UFA endorses or agrees.


 

Statewide

  1. Bumper salmon hauls around state as season winds down
  2. Wild pink salmon harvest coming in as forecast
  3. ADF&G 2017 Inseason Alaska Commercial Salmon Summary & Bluesheet:
  4. Sustained by the sea: Understanding Alaska’s commercial fishing long game
  5. Alaska Board of Fisheries 2017-2018 Proposal Book
  6. Comment deadline September 14 on tender vessel definition and regulations
  7. Homer Fishing families workshop – Friday Sept 1… Wooden Boat fest 8/31 – 9/3.
  8. Mat-Su anglers hammer state over ‘chronic failure’ to get salmon past Cook Inlet commercial fleet
  9. State to take on permitting for transportation projects; Cooper Landing bypass reconsidered

 

 
National

  1. Conclusion reached in UCIDA Cook Inlet salmon management lawsuit
  2. NOAA to offer fishermen option for electronic monitoring in 2018
  3. NMFS final rule for electronic monitoring for GOA groundfish
  4. NPFMC Electronic Monitoring Workgroup to meet – Sept 18 in Seattle
  5. NPFMC Crab Plan team meeting – September 19-21
  6. NPFMC Observer Advisory Committee, September 19-20, Seattle
  7. NPFMC October meeting – Anchorage, October 2 – 9
  8. Murkowski: Health care debate to return, tax reform on tap
  9. Senate Health Labor and Pensions Committee – Full Committee Hearing Sept 6
  10. Human Rights at Sea posts specs on voluntary fisheries Code of Practice
  11. Icy spray, heavy pots may have doomed Seattle crab boat Destination, Coast Guard learns
  12. Comment on USCG regulations – deadline September 11 (repeat item)
  13. MSA field hearing: Reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act: Oversight of Fisheries
  14. BSAI Crab FMP Amendment 48 for excessive AFA and CR share limits to CDQs – comment deadline September 21 & Oct 2.
  15. Navy Northern Edge Military exercise tried to limit wildlife impact

 

 
Marketing

  1. ASMI keeps up export push on shoestring budget
  2. Wild Alaska salmon not on menus in China…yet
  3. Juneau chef crowned King of Seafood at Great American Seafood Cook-Off
  4. ALFA & Ecotrust take a fresh look at perception of frozen
  5. NOAA opens 2018 Saltonstall-Kennedy Grant program… pre-file by October 10.

 

 
Environmental

  1. EPA Waters of the U.S. Definition Rescinding – comments extended to September 27
  2. EPA seeks comments on Pebble Mine watershed mining disposal – deadline Oct 17.
  3. Escaped Atlantic Salmon – Here’s what that farmed fish escape in Washington could mean for Alaska
  4. Fish and Game asks fishermen to report Atlantic salmon catches
  5. The story behind the well-funded opposition to block AquaBounty’s sustainable GMO salmon
  6. Reversing course on Bristol Bay protections a massive betrayal of public trust
  7. The EPA should remedy past misdeeds- John Sniveley responds
  8. EVOS Trustees Council meeting September 28, Anchorage

 

 
Aquaculture / Enhancement

  1. ADFG proposed regs for Aquatic farming transport, possession, propogation & release of aquatic organisms – comment by September 23.
  2. How oyster milkshakes and teamwork are getting Alaska’s shellfish safely to market
  3. Whales feast when hatcheries release salmon

 

 
Subsistence

  1. Federal Subsistence Regional Advisory Councils to hold meetings statewide
  2. Sitka Tribe of Alaska’s Traditional Foods Program nourishes families
  3. National Park and Park Monument Subsistence Resource Commission seeks members

 

 
Other

  1. AMSEA Online Cold-Water Safety & Survival Training for Educators
  2. Upcoming AMSEA Trainings
  3. Alaska Sea Grant – upcoming events & classes:
  4. Laine Welch’s Fish Radio – Recent Items

 

Inclusion of an item does not mean that UFA endorses or agrees.


Statewide

 

  1. Bumper salmon hauls around state as season winds down

By: Laine Welch… Fish Factor/For the Journal, 08/30/2017

Alaska’s salmon season is winding down and while catches have made the record books in some regions, the statewide take will fall a bit short of the 204 million fish forecast.

“We are within about 10 percent of the forecast, so that’s very positive and overall it’s been a pretty good season,” said Forrest Bowers, deputy director of the Commercial Fisheries Division of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

The statewide salmon catch through Aug. 25 topped 191 million. The shortfall, Bowers said, again stems from the arrival of fewer pink salmon…

http://www.alaskajournal.com/2017-08-30/fish-factor-bumper-salmon-hauls-around-state-season-winds-down#.WamvqfmGPcs

 

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  1. Wild pink salmon harvest coming in as forecast

By Margaret Bauman – Cordova Times, August 25, 2017

A Prince William Sound wild pink salmon forecast in a harvest range of 12,764,000 to 26,530,000, with a best estimate of 19,647,000 fish appears to be coming in as forecast, according to Cordova staff of Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Still, overall for Prince William Sound, the preliminary harvest total for humpies, including hatchery stocks, totals only 41,149,149 pinks, state data shows.

The total commercial salmon harvest for Prince William Sound of 48,054,000 fish also includes 5,404 chum, 1.4 million sockeyes, 74,000 silver and 13,000 kings.

Statewide the harvest through Aug. 22 included upwards of 185 million fish, including 109,381,000 pink, 52,534,000 sockeye, 20,995 chum, 3,038,000 silver, and 243,000 Chinooks.

Just within Prince William Sound, the largest harvest of 39.5 million salmon was for the PWS general seine fishery, while the PWS hatchery had 3.9 million fish, and the Coghill district had 2.9 million fish.

Bristol Bay’s total harvest stood at more than 39 million salmon, including 37.7 million sockeyes.

In Southeast Alaska, the catch stood at 37.7 million salmon, including 27 million pink, more than 8 million chum, 1.8 million silver, 565,000 red and 164,000 Chinook salmon.

http://www.thecordovatimes.com/2017/08/25/wild-pink-salmon-harvest-coming-forecast/

 

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  1. ADF&G 2017 Inseason Alaska Commercial Salmon Summary & Bluesheet:

Bluesheet – updated daily: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=commercialbyfisherysalmon.bluesheet

Summary: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=CommercialByFisherySalmon.bluesheetsummary

ADFG Forecasts and harvest projections page: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=commercialbyfisherysalmon.salmonforecast

 

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  1. Sustained by the sea: Understanding Alaska’s commercial fishing long game

ADN Sponsored content from Copper River, Prince William Sound Marketing Association

Persistence can pay off in an industry with well-documented highs and lows.

It was the fall of 1985, the weather was fair in Prince William Sound and 25-year-old Cordova fisherman, Bill Lindow, was gearing up for a typical silver salmon season. He and the rest of the commercial fleet were business as usual—motoring out of the harbor the morning of the opener, expecting a standard day on the Sound. They didn’t yet know that the 1985 silver salmon season would be anything but standard—it was one for the history books…

https://www.adn.com/features/sponsored-content/2017/08/30/sustained-by-the-sea-understanding-alaskas-commercial-fishing-long-game/

 

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*********************************************************************

 

  1. Alaska Board of Fisheries 2017-2018 Proposal Book

The Alaska Board of Fisheries (board) announces the 2017-2018 Proposal Book is now available. The board accepted 227 proposals for review during its Prince William Sound finfish, Southeast and Yakutat finfish and shellfish, and Statewide (except Southeast and Yakutat) Dungeness crab, shrimp, and other miscellaneous shellfish regulatory meetings. These proposals constitute proposed regulatory changes for the identified regions and species.

Proposals may be downloaded off the board’s website individually, in sections, or for entire meetings. The website is http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=fisheriesboard.proposalbook.

 

View Complete 2017-2018 Proposal Book (PDF)

 

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  1. Comment deadline September 14 on tender vessel definition and regulations

The Department of Fish and Game proposes to adopt regulation changes in Title 5 of the Alaska Administrative Code, to include a definition of tender vessel:

5 AAC 39.130. Reports required of fishermen, processors, buyers, exporters, and operators of certain commercial fishing vessels; transporting requirements, is proposed to be changed to add a definition of tender vessel.

You may comment on the proposed regulation changes, including the potential costs to private persons of complying with the proposed changes…

The comments must be received no later than 5:00 p.m. on September 14, 2017.

ADFG online public notice: https://aws.state.ak.us/OnlinePublicNotices/Notices/View.aspx?id=186730

 

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  1. Homer Fishing families workshop – Friday Sept 1… Wooden Boat fest 8/31 – 9/3.

A workshop for fishing families is on the agenda at the Islands and Oceans Center in Homer on Sept. 1 during the 25th annual Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Festival, which runs from Aug. 31 through Sept. 3.

The workshop will be led by Marysa Szymkowiak, a social scientist with the National Marine Fisheries Service in Juneau, and Sarah Marrinan, an economist with the North Pacific Fishery Management Council in Anchorage.

Also on the agenda are a number of activities, from kids boat building and the singing of sea chanteys and telling of tall tales to a dinner, auction and dance to benefit the Wooden Boat Society.

Details are online at www.kbwbs.org/events.html

http://www.thecordovatimes.com/2017/08/24/fishing-families-workshop-planned/

 

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  1. Mat-Su anglers hammer state over ‘chronic failure’ to get salmon past Cook Inlet commercial fleet

Alaska’s top fish manager faced an emotionally charged crowd in Palmer on Tuesday night that accused him of catering to the commercial Cook Inlet fleet and Kenai River interests at the cost of the once-plentiful salmon of the Mat-Su region.
After a dismal sportfishing summer, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game decided this week to loosen Little Su limits amid a delayed surge of salmon. But the decision came too late for the tourist crowds and local families with kids already in school and readying for the Alaska State Fair.
The Matanuska-Susitna Borough Fish and Wildlife Commission convened the meeting with Fish and Game Commissioner Sam Cotten and other top officials over the state’s “chronic failure” to let salmon pass through the Inlet to popular fishing areas like the Deshka and Little Susitna rivers.

ADN: https://www.adn.com/outdoors-adventure/fishing/2017/08/23/mat-su-anglers-hammer-state-over-chronic-failure-to-get-salmon-past-cook-inlet-fleet/

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Silver lining for Southcentral Alaska anglers: Cohos biting everywhere

https://www.adn.com/outdoors-adventure/fishing/2017/08/25/silver-lining-for-southcentral-alaska-anglers-cohos-biting-everywhere/

 

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  1. State to take on permitting for transportation projects; Cooper Landing bypass reconsidered

Elwood Brehmer, Alaska Journal of Commerce, 08/24/2017

The Alaska and federal Transportation departments have inked a deal allowing the state to assume permitting responsibility on federally funded projects, which should speed environmental reviews and save government money, according to the agencies’ leaders.

The memorandum of understanding, or MOU, will shift environmental assessment and environmental impact statement drafting from U.S. DOT sub-agencies to the state Department of Transportation and remove duplicative federal processes and “interagency squabbling,” DOT Secretary Elaine Chao said during a Thursday afternoon press conference in Anchorage…

http://www.alaskajournal.com/2017-08-24/state-take-permitting-transportation-projects-cooper-landing-bypass-reconsidered

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AK application to assume surface transportation environmental responsibilities – comment deadline September 25.

Application From the State of Alaska to the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program and Proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Assigning Environmental Responsibilities to the State…

This notice announces that FHWA has received and reviewed an application from the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF) requesting participation in the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program (Program). This Program allows for FHWA to assign, and the State to assume, responsibilities under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), and all or part of FHWA’s responsibilities for environmental review, consultation, or other actions required under any Federal environmental law with respect to one or more Federal highway projects within the State. The FHWA has determined the application to be complete and developed a draft MOU with DOT&PF outlining how the State would implement the Program with FHWA oversight. The FHWA invites the public to comment on DOT&PF’s request, including its application and the proposed MOU, which includes the proposed assignments and assumptions of environmental review, consultation, and other activities…

Please submit comments by September 25, 2017…

Federal Register notice 8/25/17: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-18066

Regulations.gov Docket: https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=FHWA-2017-0024

 

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National & International:

 

  1. Conclusion reached in UCIDA Cook Inlet salmon management lawsuit

The United Cook Inlet Drift Association’s lawsuit against the federal government has finally reached its conclusion, though its repercussions are far from over.
Alaska U.S. District Judge Timothy Burgess signed an order Aug. 3 stipulating the next steps for UCIDA and the National Marine Fisheries Service. A panel of three federal judges in the Ninth Circuit Court ruled in favor of UCIDA in September 2016, saying the North Pacific Fishery Management Council had been wrong to remove Cook Inlet’s salmon fisheries from federal oversight.

The order requires the National Marine Fisheries Service to file a report with the district court three times per year, keep the public involved in the council process of determining a proper rule and ensure that the National Marine Fisheries Service finalize a rule within a year of the council passing one. It also provides measures if the council doesn’t produce an amendment and the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, which oversees the National Marine Fisheries Service, has to produce a secretarial amendment.

It also gives UCIDA a right to ask the court to set a deadline for a new fishery management plan for Cook Inlet salmon if the council doesn’t form a stakeholder group that includes UCIDA. Both sides would still have the right to brief the court on their beliefs about a reasonable deadline date, according to the judgment…

Peninsula Clarion 8/22: http://peninsulaclarion.com/news/local/2017-08-22/conclusion-reached-ucida-lawsuit

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  1. NOAA to offer fishermen option for electronic monitoring in 2018

Beginning in 2018, Alaska fishermen, some of whom may not have the space on their vessel or life raft capacity for a NOAA Fisheries observer, will have the option to use an electronic monitoring (EM) system instead.

NOAA Fisheries is integrating EM into the North Pacific Observer Program for the 2018 fishing year. An EM system uses cameras and associated sensors to passively record and monitor fishing activities—work traditionally accomplished by human observers placed onboard commercial fishing vessels to collect data.

NOAA press release 8/8/17:

https://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/node/56859

 


 

  1. NMFS final rule for electronic monitoring for GOA groundfish

NMFS hereby issues regulations to implement Amendment 114 to the Fishery Management Plan forStart Printed Page 36992Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area and Amendment 104 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (collectively referred to as the FMPs). Amendments 114/104 and this final rule integrate electronic monitoring (EM) into the North Pacific Observer Program (Observer Program). This final rule establishes a process for owners or operators of vessels using nontrawl gear to request to participate in the EM selection pool and the requirements for vessel owners or operators while in the EM selection pool. This action is necessary to improve the collection of data needed for the conservation, management, and scientific understanding of managed fisheries. Amendments 114/104 are intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act), the FMPs, and other applicable laws.

Effective September 7, 2017.

Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-16703

Regulations.gov docket # NOAA-NMFS-2016-0154

 

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  1. NPFMC Electronic Monitoring Workgroup to meet – Sept 18 in Seattle

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Electronic Monitoring Workgroup (EMWG) will hold a public meeting on September 18, 2017, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific Time, AFSC, Traynor Room in Building 4, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA…

The meeting will be held in the FMA Observer Training Room 1055 AFSC, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA. It will also be available by teleconference at (907) 271-2896…
EMWG AGENDA

OAC AGENDA

Federal Register:https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-18600

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  1. NPFMC Crab Plan team meeting – September 19-21

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Crab Plan Team will meet September 19-21, 2017…

The meeting will be held at the Alaska Fishery Science Center, (AFSC) Traynor Room, Sand Point Way, Seattle, WA.

SCHEDULE

AGENDA

Federal register notice: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-18601

 

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  1. NPFMC Observer Advisory Committee, September 19-20, Seattle

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Observer Advisory Committee (OAC) will meet September 19-20, 2017…

The meeting will be held at the FMA Observer Training Center, Room 1055, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Alaska Fisheries Science Center, Seattle, WA. Teleconference available at (907) 271-2896.

Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-18602

 

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  1. NPFMC October meeting – Anchorage, October 2 – 9

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council will meet the week of October 2, 2017 at the downtown Hilton Hotel. The AGENDA and SCHEDULE will be available in early September 2017…

See NPFMC meetings page https://www.npfmc.org/upcoming-council-meetings/ for information on the council meeting, as it is posted.

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  1. Murkowski: Health care debate to return, tax reform on tap

By: Naomi Klouda, Alaska Journal of Commerce 08/30/2017

The “right fight” starts next week in Congress when the Senate will take up health care again in hopes of reworking the system to bring down its enormous costs, Sen. Lisa Murkowski told an Anchorage Rotary group Aug. 29.

Murkowski spent much of the August break back in Alaska tour-guiding cabinet members and senators. The most recent visitor was Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price, who followed a visit by Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao.

“Instead of Alaska importing the experts, they are coming and learning from us — how we do things — and I’m proud of what’s going on,” she said.

After Price’s visit, he touted Alaska’s system for Alaska Native health care. Chao took her first tour of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System and announced an agreement with the State of Alaska to take the lead role on permitting transportation projects.

The first week after Congress resumes from its summer recess, Murkowski anticipates taking up the gauntlet of replacing or amending the Affordable Care Act. On Sept. 6, the first rounds of talks begin before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, known as HELP, of which she is a member.

“We’re going to take a targeted approach through working a process,” Murkowski said. “This is the way I have wanted to do it all along: follow the legislative process.”

http://www.alaskajournal.com/2017-08-30/murkowski-health-care-debate-return-tax-reform-tap#.Wam3mfmGPcs

Senator Murkowski Health Care issues page:

https://www.murkowski.senate.gov/issues/issues-and-priorities/health

 


 

  1. Senate Health Labor and Pensions Committee – Full Committee Hearing Sept 6

Stabilizing Premiums and Helping Individuals in the Individual Insurance Market for 2018: State Insurance Commissioners

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 10:00 AM Eastern… watch online at:

https://www.help.senate.gov/hearings/stabilizing-premiums-and-helping-individuals-in-the-individual-insurance-market-for-2018-state-insurance-commissioners

 

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  1. Human Rights at Sea posts specs on voluntary fisheries Code of Practice

Human Rights at Sea is pleased to announce its close involvement in the Steering Group for the development of the Publicly Available Specification (PAS) 1550:2017 concerning a new voluntary Code of Practice for due diligence and fair working practices in the fisheries sector.

The charity worked alongside 15 other stakeholders including the British Retail Consortium (BRC), ClientEarth, Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF), FishWise, Food and Drink Federation (FDF), Lovering Foods Ltd., Marine Management Organisation (MMO), MRAG Ltd., Oceana, The Pew Charitable Trusts (Pew), Seafish, UK Seafood Industry Alliance, Tesco Stores Limited, Wm. Morrison Supermarkets plc and WWF.

As a Code of Practice, this PAS takes the form of guidance and recommendations. It incorporates labour issues and considers illegal treatment of crew on fishing vessels to be linked with illegal fishing. One of the aims of this PAS is to help enable decent working conditions to be provided not only on board vessels but at all factories, work stations and during all activities throughout supply chains.

The PAS builds on the BRC Advisory Note for the UK supply chain on how to avoid Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishery products, which was published in February 2015, by including in addition, aspects of traceability as well as social elements. The PAS is aimed at processors and importers and gives recommendations on: the considerations within a due diligence system in order to minimise the risk of IUU seafood in the supply chain; the considerations to minimise the risk of a lack of decent conditions at work in the supply chain; and what traceability systems are used to deliver the ability to verify the claim.

A PAS is a document that standardizes elements of a product, service or process. PASs are usually commissioned by industry leaders – be they individual companies, SMEs, trade associations or government departments.

The PAS was developed with the financial support of the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF), Oceana, The Pew Charitable Trusts (Pew) and WWF) Its development was facilitated by BSI Standards Limited and it was published under licence from The British Standards Institution (BSI). It came into effect on 31 July 2017.

https://humanrightsatsea-news.org/2017/08/09/new-seafood-supply-chain-code-of-practice-published/

 

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  1. Icy spray, heavy pots may have doomed Seattle crab boat Destination, Coast Guard learns

What caused the February sinking of the Seattle-based Destination in the Bering Sea? Coast Guard officials examine a treacherous scenario involving freezing spray and a boat deck stacked high with pots…

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/coast-guard-hearing-icy-spray-heavy-pots-may-have-doomed-crab-boat/

 

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  1. Comment on USCG regulations – deadline September 11 (repeat item)

Federal Register 7/7/17 – comment extension: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-14254

or

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2017/07/07/2017-14254/evaluation-of-existing-coast-guard-regulations-guidance-documents-interpretative-documents-and

Previous item: Comments wanted on USCG Regulations…

Federal register 6/8/17: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-11930

Updated Regulations.gov docket

https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=USCG-2017-0480-0063

For other fishing vessel safety info see http://fishsafewest.info/

 

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  1. MSA field hearing: Reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act: Oversight of Fisheries Management Successes and Challenges. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation held on August 23 in Kenai.

For links to written testimony from invited panelists see:

https://www.commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/hearings?ID=B41AA74D-2FE6-4945-AAFF-4B43AD0ACCF7

&&&

Fleet consolidation and loss of fishing jobs a hot topic at MSA hearing

KDLL Jay Barrett story with audio:

http://kdll.org/post/fleet-consolidation-and-loss-fishing-jobs-hot-topic-msa-hearing#stream/0

&&&

Fish pie – by Craig Medred

https://craigmedred.news/2017/08/24/fish-pie/

 

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  1. BSAI Crab FMP Amendment 48 for excessive AFA and CR share limits to CDQs – comment deadline September 21 & Oct 2.

NMFS issues a proposed rule to implement Amendment 48 to the Fishery Management Plan for Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands King and Tanner Crabs (Crab FMP) and a regulatory amendment to revise regulations implementing the American Fisheries Act (AFA) Program and the Crab Rationalization (CR) Program. This proposed rule would revise how NMFS determines the amount of limited access privileges held and used by groups in the Western Alaska Community Development Quota Program (CDQ Program) for the purposes of managing the excessive share limits under the AFA Program and the CR Program. This proposed rule is necessary to align regulations and the Crab FMP to be consistent with an amendment to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) and NMFS’ current method of managing excessive share limits for CDQ groups in the AFA Program and the CR Program. This proposed rule is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the Crab FMP, and other applicable law…

Submit comments on or before September 21, 2017.

Federal Register noice: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-17607

 

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Notice of availability of fishery management plan amendment; request for comments…

Summary: The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) submitted Amendment 48 to the Fishery Management Plan for Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands King and Tanner Crabs (Crab FMP) to NMFS for review. If approved, Amendment 48 would revise the Crab FMP to specify how NMFS determines the amount of limited access privileges held and used by groups in the Western Alaska Community Development Quota Program (CDQ Program) for the purposes of managing the excessive share limits under the Crab Rationalization (CR) Program. Amendment 48 is necessary to make the Crab FMP consistent with Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) requirements and NMFS’ current method of managing excessive share limits for CDQ groups in the CR Program. This action is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the Crab FMP, and other applicable laws…

Submit comments on or before October 2, 2017.

Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-16376

Regulations.gov docket: NOAA-NMFS-2017-0038

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  1. Navy Northern Edge Military exercise tried to limit wildlife impact

The organizers of a military exercise held in Alaska this summer took efforts to minimize impact to marine wildlife, U.S. Navy officials said.

Northern Edge 2017, a Pacific Command-sponsored joint training exercise with the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps, was held in the Gulf of Alaska and elsewhere in the state from May 1-12. For part of that time, the USS Hopper, an Arleigh-Burke class destroyer, docked in Homer.

At the time, the ship was greeted by fans, supporters and those protesting the timing of the military exercise while whale migrations were ongoing. Two representatives of the exercise presented a recap of the drill’s events for the Homer City Council at its Aug. 14 meeting. Impacts to marine life were kept to a minimum, they said.

“No explosives were used,” said Chip Johnson, a marine biologist with the Navy. “That eliminates that potential risk to any species.”

The exercise was approved to go on longer than its 12 days, he said. The exercise’s organizers worked with the National Marine Fisheries Service and Alaska Native tribes to address concerns about species that are being fished for, and adjusted the exercise accordingly, Johnson said…

http://homernews.com/local-news-news/2017-08-23/military-exercise-tried-limit-wildlife-impact

 

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Marketing

 

  1. ASMI keeps up export push on shoestring budget

By: Laine Welch, Fish Factor/For the Journal, 08/02/2017

Seafood is Alaska’s top export by far, usually topping $3 billion in sales each year to 120 countries around the world, and comprising 55 percent of our nation’s total seafood exports.

Credit for the state’s export sales goes mostly to the international program run by the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, or ASMI, which runs eight regional offices in Japan, China, Brazil, London, Spain, France, Germany and Eastern Europe.

The overseas marketing reps, or OMRs, work under contract with ASMI to coordinate hundreds of seafood promotions each year to build the Alaska brand…

http://www.alaskajournal.com/2017-08-02/fish-factor-asmi-keeps-export-push-shoestring-budget#.Wam0jvmGPcs

 

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  1. Wild Alaska salmon not on menus in China…yet

By Elizabeth Jenkins, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau – August 10, 2017

About a third of the salmon caught in Alaska gets shipped to China for processing. But a recent consumer study suggests that at least some of that wild salmon should stay in the Chinese markets.

Qiujie “Angie” Zheng didn’t grow up eating much salmon in her hometown near Beijing, China. When she did, she ate farmed salmon, prepared raw — sashimi style.

“After I moved up to Alaska, I realized wild salmon…is different than farm-raised salmon dominating China market,” Zheng said.

Zheng is now an associate professor of economics at the University of Alaska Anchorage. She said most Chinese consumers are familiar with Alaskan salmon. It’s been popularized by fish oil pills for decades, but few have dined on it…

http://www.alaskapublic.org/2017/08/10/wild-alaska-salmon-not-on-menus-in-chinayet/

 

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  1. Juneau chef crowned King of Seafood at Great American Seafood Cook-Off

This month Juneau chefs Lionel Udippa and Jacob Pickard represented Alaska at the Great American Seafood Cook-Off in New Orleans…

Back in Juneau outside the restaurant Salt, Uddipa runs into another Juneau-famous chef: 10-year-old Denali Schijvens, who cooked his way to the White House and competed on Food Network’s Chopped Junior…

https://www.ktoo.org/2017/08/17/juneau-chef-crowned-king-seafood-great-american-seafood-cook-off/

Great American Seafood Cookoff page: http://www.greatamericanseafoodcookoff.com/

 

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  1. ALFA & Ecotrust take a fresh look at perception of frozen

ALFA and Alaskans Own, its CSF program, have been involved with a research study testing consumer’s preferences for “fresh” vs frozen fish, all in an effort to answer the question, “is fresh seafood really higher quality than flash frozen?

One of our partner organizations, Ecotrust, has recently published a blog post about this study and its fascinating results:

“This pervasive preference, along with the desire to build more stable markets for community fishermen, prompted a recent study we conducted in partnership with Oregon State University’s Food Innovation Center, and Michigan-based seafood certification company, Seafood Analytics. The partners set out to address two key assumptions: That frozen fish is less fresh and less tasty than its unfrozen counterpart.

Conducted using samples of salmon and cod harvested by community fishermen from Port Orford Sustainable Seafood in Oregon and Alaskan’s Own out of Sitka Alaska, the study compared their flash-frozen fish with fresh-from-the-grocery-store samples.”

http://www.alfafish.org/news-1/2017/8/25/a-fresh-look-at-frozen-fish

Ecotrust blog:

…Contrary to current consumer perceptions, the flash-frozen fish was regarded as either more desirable or statistically equal to fresh fish. Participants noted a, “good, clean, almost buttery flavor” and said the unseasoned, previously frozen, fish samples tasted like they were, “recently caught and fresh out of the ocean.”

https://ecotrust.org/taking-a-fresh-look-at-frozen-fish/

 

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  1. NOAA opens 2018 Saltonstall-Kennedy Grant program… pre-file by October 10.

August 11, 2017 – NOAA Fisheries is pleased to announce the 2018 Saltonstall-Kennedy (SK) Grant competition is currently open.

This year’s solicitation consists of 2 separate submission processes. All interested applicants must submit a 2 page Pre-Proposal to the FFO posted at www.Grants.gov found here.  Applicants interested in submitting a full application after the pre-proposal review process must submit the full application through www.grants.gov.

Please note that under this one Full Funding Opportunity there are two (2) competition links…

(read instructions carefully!)

The goal of the SK program is to fund projects that address the needs of fishing communities, optimize economic benefits by building and maintaining sustainable fisheries, and increase other opportunities to keep working waterfronts viable. The FY18 solicitation seeks applications that fall into one of four priorities:

  • Marine Aquaculture
  • Adapting to Environmental Changes and Other Long Term Impacts in Marine Ecosystem
  • Promotion, Development, and Marketing
  • Territorial Science

NOAA S-K home page:

http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/mb/financial_services/skhome.htm

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Environmental

 

  1. EPA Waters of the U.S. Definition Rescinding – comments extended to September 27

The comment period for the proposed rule published on July 27, 2017, at 82 FR 34899, is extended. Comments must be received on or before September 27, 2017. Comment extension notice:

https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-17739

Previous item: EPA and Army Move to Rescind 2015 “Waters of the U.S.” Definition

Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-13997

Regulations.gov docket: https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=EPA-HQ-OW-2017-0203

Previous EPA notice: Notice of Intention to Review and Rescind or Revise the Clean Water Rule (PDF) (March 6, 171 K)

EPA Waters of the United States page: https://www.epa.gov/wotus-rule

 

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  1. EPA seeks comments on Pebble Mine watershed mining disposal – deadline Oct 17.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator and Region 10 Regional Administrator are requesting public comment on whether to withdraw the EPA Region 10 July 2014 Proposed Determination that was issued pursuant to Section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act, to restrict the use of certain waters in the South Fork Koktuli River, North Fork Koktuli River, and Upper Talarik Creek watersheds in southwest Alaska as disposal sites for dredged or fill material associated with mining the Pebble deposit, a copper-, gold-, and molybdenum-bearing ore body. EPA agreed to initiate this proposed withdrawal process as part of a May 11, 2017 settlement agreement with the Pebble Limited Partnership (PLP), whose subsidiaries own the mineral claims to the Pebble deposit…

Comments must be received on or before October 17, 2017…

Federal Register 7/19/17: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-15181

Regulations.gov docket folder: https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=EPA-R10-OW-2017-0369

EPA Bristol Bay home page: https://www.epa.gov/bristolbay

May 2017 EPA – Pebble settlement agreement: https://www.epa.gov/bristolbay/2017-settlement-agreement-between-epa-and-pebble-limited-partnership

 

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  1. Escaped Atlantic Salmon – Here’s what that farmed fish escape in Washington could mean for Alaska

Leaders and experts in Alaska’s fishing industry are concerned about what a recent escape of farmed Atlantic salmon in Washington state waters might mean for Alaska.

On Aug. 19, damage to a fish farm owned by Cooke Aquaculture in the San Juan Islands area allowed thousands of Atlantic salmon to escape “following a structural failure of part of the net pen structure,” Cooke spokeswoman Nell Halse said in a statement.

The farm fully collapsed the following day, Halse said. The nets held hundreds of thousands of fish, and as of Thursday it still was not clear how many got out. In Washington, The Seattle Times reported, the farmed fish are “headed to every river in Puget Sound.”

In Alaska, where fish farming is illegal, some fear the escapees might eventually make their way north and impact native species. That worry is quelled a bit by the fact that Atlantic salmon have cropped up in Alaska before, but haven’t established a population here.

Jerry McCune, president of commercial fishing group United Fishermen of Alaska, said that in the past, Atlantic salmon have been found as far north as the Copper River.

“They could end up here and we’ve got to take them out,” he said. “It’s very concerning because Washington’s raising non-native species and they continue to do that in pens, which always have a chance of escaping.”

Risks associated with a non-native species coming in, he said, could include the introduction of disease, intermingling with wild salmon stocks, and “getting in our spawning streams” to crowd out the wild fish.

“One of the big fears is they could take hold as an invasive (species),” said Dale Kelley, executive director of the Alaska Trollers Association.

She said that Atlantic salmon have been caught in Alaska for “quite some time,” and earlier this year a “suspicious looking juvenile” was found in a Southeast creek.

https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/environment/2017/08/27/heres-what-that-farmed-fish-escape-in-washington-could-mean-for-alaska/

&&&

NPR Why Are Atlantic Salmon Being Farmed In The Northwest?

http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/08/29/546803147/why-are-atlantic-salmon-being-farmed-in-the-northwest

http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/08/29/546803147/why-are-atlantic-salmon-being-farmed-in-the-northwest

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Salmon Fisher: Spill Is Dangerous And ‘We Shouldn’t Have To Deal With It’

http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/08/30/547361033/salmon-fisher-spill-is-dangerous-and-we-shouldnt-have-to-deal-with-it

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Sens. Murray, Cantwell, WA Democratic Reps. Urge Immediate Action from Feds to Protect Native Salmon from Fish Farm Fiasco

https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/newsreleases?ID=B11E63FD-B216-477F-B81D-1C2E8BE6A4ED

&

Atlantic Salmon Escape Fans Opposition To Company’s Proposed New Fish Farm

http://nwnewsnetwork.org/post/atlantic-salmon-escape-fans-opposition-companys-proposed-new-fish-farm

 


 

  1. Fish and Game asks fishermen to report Atlantic salmon catches

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is asking that fishermen around the state report any Atlantic salmon they catch…

The state of Washington is coordinating a response to contain the escaped salmon and is working with Cooke Aquaculture to remove the salmon left in the damaged pens, which was ongoing as of Sunday, according to an update from the Washington Department of Natural Resources.

Meanwhile, neighboring states — including Alaska — are asking fishermen to keep an eye out for the escaped salmon. Fish and Game issued a press release Aug. 25 asking sport anglers and commercial fishermen to report any Atlantic salmon they catch.

http://peninsulaclarion.com/news/local/2017-08-28/fish-and-game-asks-fishermen-report-atlantic-salmon-catches

ADFG REPORT AN INVASIVE page:

https://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=invasivespeciesreporter.plants_aquatic

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  1. The story behind the well-funded opposition to block AquaBounty’s sustainable GMO salmon

Andrew Porterfield August 29, 2017 | Genetic Literacy Project

It took more than 20 years to navigate the complex regulatory system, but the world’s first GMO animal to be approved for human consumption has finally made it to the dinner plate. It took so long because the quest by AquaBounty to get its AquAdvantage Salmon to market was challenged at every turn by a host of opponents — from environmentalists to politicians to fishing industry groups.

It was an opposition effort that was fueled by a lot of money and a lot of allies (including some in the US government)…

The story behind the well-funded opposition to block AquaBounty’s sustainable GMO salmon

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  1. Reversing course on Bristol Bay protections a massive betrayal of public trust

By Eric Forrer for the Juneau Empire

During the State of Alaska Frank Murkowski administration (2002-2006), the state government engaged in a process described as the 2005 Bristol Bay Area Plan in order to determine the designation of state lands, among them the lands that include the Bristol Bay river headwaters. While these lands are obviously critical habitat for fisheries, Gov. Murkowski and his commissioner of natural resources made sure that the chosen designation made these lands open to future development. This ideologically driven decision was widely seen as a misuse of power and the Nondalton Tribal Council, leading a coalition of five village councils, Trout Unlimited and the Alaska Fisherman’s Marketing Association, sued to reverse the decision and initiate a new process of determination (State Dept. of Natural Resources v. Nondalton Tribal Council, 1/20/2012, sp-6638).

In this, they were not successful…

http://juneauempire.com/opinion/2017-08-10/reversing-course-bristol-bay-protections-massive-betrayal-public-trust


 

  1. The EPA should remedy past misdeeds- John Sniveley responds

Juneau Empire, 8/17

On most issues there are multiple perspectives. This is the case with Pebble. Eric Forrer recently wrote about his views regarding recent actions by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). I think it would be helpful to understand ours.

http://juneauempire.com/opinion/2017-08-17/epa-should-remedy-past-misdeeds

 

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  1. EVOS Trustees Council meeting September 28, Anchorage

The Department of the Interior, Office of the Secretary is announcing a public meeting of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill (EVOS) Trustee Council’s Public Advisory Committee…

September 28, 2017, at 10 a.m… at Glenn Olds Hall Conference Room, 4210 University Drive, Anchorage, Alaska.

Federal Register notice 9/1:

https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2017-18526

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustees Council home page: http://www.evostc.state.ak.us/

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Enhancement / Aquaculture

 

  1. ADFG proposed regulations for Aquatic farming transport, possession Propogation & release of aquatic organisms – comment by September 23.

The Department of Fish and Game proposes to adopt regulation changes in Title 5 of the Alaska Administrative Code, dealing with the collection, transportation possession, propagation or release of aquatic organisms; aquatic farming, including the following:

Chapter 41. Collection, Transportation, Possession, Propagation or Release of Aquatic Organisms; Aquatic Farming., is proposed to be changed to provide uniform procedures and requirements for Aquatic Resource Permits (Scientific and Educational) and Fish Transport Permits, to change the requirements for Aquatic Resource Permits, and make other related and necessary changes.  This is part of a streamlining and cost saving effort.

You may comment on the proposed regulation changes, including the potential costs to private persons of complying with the proposed changes, by submitting written comments to Frances H. Leach, Regulations Program Coordinator, Department of Fish and Game, P.O. Box 115526, Juneau, AK 99811-5526.  Additionally, the Department of Fish and Game will accept comments by facsimile at (907) 465-2604 and by electronic mail at frances.leach@alask

ADFG online public notice: https://aws.state.ak.us/OnlinePublicNotices/Notices/View.aspx?id=186834

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DNR Aquatic farming program home page: http://dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/aquatic/index.cfm

 

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  1. How oyster milkshakes and teamwork are getting Alaska’s shellfish safely to market

By Elizabeth Jenkins, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau – August 18, 2017

Alaskans are working together to try to make the industry safe and profitable. By tracking where paralytic shellfish poisoning occurs, more of the state’s seafood could make it to market.

Alaska’s shellfish producers have to go through rigorous testing routinely to make sure their product is safe to eat. When the weather is warm, they submit a sample to the state’s lab every week — sometimes more. That’s where Matthew Forester comes in…

http://www.alaskapublic.org/2017/08/18/how-oyster-milkshakes-and-teamwork-are-getting-alaskas-shellfish-safely-to-market/

 

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  1. Whales feast when hatcheries release salmon

Crowds of young fish at release sites may attract hungry humpbacks to a new type of prey

Some Pacific humpbacks have discovered a new source of convenience food.

After wintering in the tropics, these whales migrate every spring to feeding grounds in southeastern Alaska. Now, some have added a new Alaskan dining destination. They visit fish hatcheries as they are releasing young salmon into the sea, researchers report.

It’s an unusual behavior for the whales. Scientists say this is the first time humpbacks anywhere have been seen eating young salmon.

The whales are “40 feet [12 meters] long and they’re feeding on fish that are the size of my finger,” says Ellen Chenoweth. She works at the Juneau Center of the fisheries department of the University of Alaska Fairbanks. As a marine ecologist, she studies how humpbacks find food. For such small prey to be worth eating, the big whales need to find a lot in one place. Young salmon streaming out of hatchery nets seem to fit the bill.

https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/whales-feast-when-hatcheries-release-salmon

 

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Subsistence

 

  1. Federal Subsistence Regional Advisory Councils to hold meetings statewide

Public is welcome and encouraged to participate

The 10 Federal Subsistence Regional Advisory Councils will meet late September through mid-November to discuss proposals to change Federal subsistence hunting and trapping regulations for the 2018-2020 regulatory years as well as other issues affecting subsistence in their regions. Regulatory proposals that will be considered by the Councils at these meetings can be found at: www.doi.gov/subsistence/proposal/current/index.cfm.

Office of Subsistence Management notice:

https://www.doi.gov/subsistence/news/general/federal-subsistence-regional-advisory-councils-hold-meetings-statewide

Federal Subsistence Board Meeting page: https://www.doi.gov/subsistence/archives

&

News – for more news and specific fishery updates:

https://www.doi.gov/subsistence/news/general/subsistence/news/fsb

 

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  1. Sitka Tribe of Alaska’s Traditional Foods Program nourishes families

It’s a cloudy Tuesday in July. At 4 a.m., it’s already light out, and Jeff Feldpausch and Mike Smith are preparing for a trip up to Sitkoh Bay to harvest sockeye salmon and halibut. It’s just another day in the office for them: a boat trip to a remote area of Southeast Alaska to harvest food for the Sitka Tribe of Alaska’s (STA) Traditional Foods Program.

Every year, about 300 households receive food provided by their work, with food being distributed first to elders and then the rest of the community. In order to be eligible to receive food, one must be a resident of Sitka, Alaska, and a citizen of the Sitka Tribe of Alaska…

http://juneauempire.com/art/2017-08-17/sitka-tribe-alaska-s-traditional-foods-program-nourishes-families

 

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  1. National Park and Park Monument Subsistence Resource Commission seeks members

The Office of Boards and Commissions is accepting applications for the Denali, Gates of the Arctic, Lake Clark, Cape Krusenstern, Kobuk Valley, Aniakchak and Wrangell-St. Elias seats on the National Park and Park Monument Subsistence Resource Commission.  Please submit your application online at:
http://gov.alaska.gov/services/boards-and-commissions/apply-for-a-board-appointment/
You may attach your resume to the online application or email your resume to: boards@alaska.gov

 

Online public notice 8/16: https://aws.state.ak.us/OnlinePublicNotices/Notices/View.aspx?id=186790

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Other

 

  1. AMSEA Online Cold-Water Safety & Survival Training for Educators

The Alaska Marine Safety Education Association (AMSEA) will offer its popular Cold-Water Safety & Survival Training for Educators, online starting September 18, 2017.  The fourteen-week course is offered through the University of Alaska Southeast-Sitka campus. Two 593 continuing education credits may be awarded upon completion.

The course teaches the content youth educators need to teach children and young adults to play and work safely around cold water.   Topics covered include, cold-water safety & survival, hypothermia, personal flotation devices, ice safety & rescue, and risk assessment.

The course is built around AMSEA’s activity based K-12 curriculum, Surviving Outdoor Adventures.  Materials are presented through fun computer-based activities, as well as interaction with fellow students and the instructor in online forums. Students come away with a ready-to-use lesson plan and templates for age appropriate lessons. The course costs $655 for tuition, books and fees.  Interested educators may register online at www.amsea.org or call (907) 747-3287.

 


 

  1. Upcoming AMSEA Trainings

September 18 – December 15, 2017 – Sitka, Alaska – Online Educator’s Workshop, Cold-Water Safety & Survival

September 19-24, 2017 – Sitka, Alaska – Marine Safety Instructor Training (MSIT)

September 25, 2017 – Sitka, Alaska – Fishing Vessel Drill Conductor

…and many more in lower 48 states – see right side bar on the AMSEA home page at http://www.amsea.org/

 

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  1. Alaska Sea Grant – upcoming events & classes:

HACCP (Anchorage September 2017)

Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point
Sep 14–15, 2017
Anchorage, Alaska

Planning and Facilitating Collaborative Meetings

Sep 20–21, 2017
Anchorage, Alaska

Smoked Seafood School

Oct 12–13, 2017
Kodiak, Alaska

Alaska Seafood Processing Leadership Institute

A training program for future leaders in the seafood industry
Nov 13–17, 2017
Kodiak, Alaska

2017 Alaska Young Fishermen’s Summit

Dec 6–8, 2017
Anchorage, Alaska

Alaska Sea Grant home page: https://seagrant.uaf.edu/

 

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  1. Laine Welch’s Fish Radio – Recent Items
    Catch shares canned by AK Dept. of Fish and Game at MSA hearing

Escaped Atlantic salmon heading north; Alaskans urged to be on the look out!

Popular SK grant program widens door for more applicants; Free Alaska Q&A webinar

Alaska salmon season winding down; Some catches make the record books

Impacts of acidic oceans revealed for key Alaska fish and shellfish species

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United Fishermen of Alaska seeks new executive director – see links at top!

These items and more, online at http://www.alaskafishradio.com/

 

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Compiled by staff of United Fishermen of Alaska
ufa@ufa-fish.org
PO Box 20229
Juneau AK 99802
(907) 586-2820

 

 

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