Saturday, March 11, 2023

Halibut box closes in on trawl fleet

The National Marine Fisheries Service has approved a measure to tighten limits on halibut trawl bycatch in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands.

The action is aimed at a fleet of nearly 20 factory trawlers known as the Amendment 80 sector.

The measure replaces the fleet's current static bycatch limit with one based on halibut abundance. It took years to develop and comes over the fleet's strenuous objections.

Here are three letters from companies who urged NMFS not to approve the measure:

Now that the government is finalizing the halibut measure, it'll be interesting to see if the Amendment 80 fleet challenges the action in court.


Anonymous said...

They submitted a lengthy "public comment" outlining their legal position. These five companies don't even land fish into an Alaskan port, and the product goes straight to East Asia. Why should Alaska care about these companies, they buy fuel, groceries, and pay a small amount of tax? Meanwhile they waste millions of pounds of halibut and who knows what else.

Anonymous said...

We are so overdue for such actions. The A80 fleet has been destructive and wasteful on an unbelievable scale for way too long. Truth is, these regulations need to continue to tighten! We need to get rid of them all together.

Anonymous said...

Just wondering are you two commenters fishermen or are you rabid socialist nazi environmentalist just wondering mike svenson

Anonymous said...

All the A80 fish is landed in Alaska and the companies have probably paid something like $200m landing tax over the last 20 years, mostly to Unalaska. A80 ships waste halibut because the law requires that, it actually prohibits them from keeping the Halibut. The entire rest of the world requires the ships keep the halibut. Alaska fish managers are the cruel and wasteful outliers on this issue. And when A80 tries to change the law to eliminate the waste, the very same low IQ losers who complain about waste work overtime crying to the Alaska senators to prevent legal change necessary to end it. Why? Just so they can keep bitching about it. They really are that dumb, and the fishery suffers for it.

Anonymous said...

If their bycatch can't be brought under control, shut them down!

Anonymous said...

Maybe you should quit towing on the halibut nursery grounds.

Anonymous said...

Bah. Now all of a sudden they have a stake in halibut conservation, and their bycatch floats with abundance. Poor guys can't stomach that common sense approach.

The doom and gloom we hear from the fleet is just a recycle of what they said when their bycatch limits were dropped in 2016. "We're suffering! You'll put us out of business!"

We've heard it all before.

Anonymous said...

Mike — You caught us. We are rabid Nazi socialists, not Alaskan fisherman who have seen all the fisheries decline over the years while trawlers get to avoid conservation.

— Commenter one