[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 45 (Tuesday, March 8, 2011)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 12607-12608]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-5234]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 101126521-0640-02]
RIN 0648-XA262


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation 
of Pollock in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Temporary rule.

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SUMMARY: NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amounts of the Aleut 
Corporation's pollock directed fishing allowance and the Community 
Development Quota from the Aleutian Islands subarea to the Bering Sea 
subarea directed fisheries. These actions are necessary to provide 
opportunity for harvest of the 2011 total allowable catch of pollock, 
consistent with the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan 
for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area.

DATES: Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 8, 2011, 
until 2400 A.l.t., December 31, 2011, unless otherwise modified or 
superseded through publication of a notification in the Federal 
Register.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Obren Davis, 907-586-7228.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the 
Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) exclusive economic zone 
according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering 
Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (FMP) prepared by the North 
Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) under authority of the 
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations 
governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at 
subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679.
    In the Aleutian Islands subarea, the portion of the 2011 pollock 
total allowable catch (TAC) allocated to the Aleut Corporation's 
directed fishing allowance (DFA) is 15,500 metric tons (mt) and the 
Community Development Quota (CDQ) is 1,900 mt as established by the 
final 2011 and 2012 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI 
(76 FR 11139, March 1, 2011).
    As of March 1, 2011, the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS, 
(Regional Administrator) has determined that 12,500 mt of Aleut 
Corporation's DFA and 1,900 mt of pollock CDQ in the Aleutian Islands 
subarea will not be harvested. Therefore, in accordance with Sec.  
679.20(a)(5)(iii)(B)(4), NMFS reallocates 12,500 mt of Aleut 
Corporation's DFA and 1,900 mt of pollock CDQ from the Aleutian Islands 
subarea to the 2011 Bering Sea subarea allocations. The 1,900 mt of 
pollock CDQ is added to the 2011 Bering Sea CDQ DFA. The remaining 
12,500 mt of pollock is apportioned to the Bering Sea subarea by AFA 
sector. The AFA Inshore sector receives 6,250 mt (50 percent), the AFA 
catcher/processor sector receives 5,000 mt (40 percent), and the AFA 
mothership sector receives 1,250 mt (10 percent). The 2011 pollock 
incidental catch allowance remains at 33,804 mt. As a result, the 
harvest specifications for pollock in the Aleutian Islands subarea 
included in the final harvest 2011 and 2012 specifications for 
groundfish in the BSAI (76 FR 11139, March 1, 2011) are revised as 
follows. For the Aleutian Islands subarea, 3,000 mt to Aleut 
Corporation's DFA and 0 mt to CDQ pollock. Furthermore, pursuant to 
Sec.  679.20(a)(5), Table 3 of the final 2011 and 2012 harvest 
specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (76 FR 11139, March 1, 2011) 
is revised to make 2011 pollock allocations consistent with this 
reallocation. This reallocation results in proportional adjustments to 
the 2011 Aleut Corporation and CDQ pollock allocations established at 
Sec.  679.20(a)(5).

[[Page 12608]]



     Table 3--Final 2011 and 2012 Allocations of Pollock TACS to the Directed Pollock Fisheries and to the CDQ Directed Fishing Allowances (DFA) \1\
                                                              [All amounts in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   2011 A season \1\        2011 B                     2012 A season \1\        2012 B
                                                              --------------------------  season \1\              --------------------------  season \1\
                 Area and sector                      2011                      SCA     -------------     2012                      SCA     ------------
                                                  allocations    A season     harvest      B season   Allocations    A season     harvest      B season
                                                                   DFA       limit \2\       DFA                       DFA       limit \2\       DFA
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bering Sea subarea..............................    1,266,400          n/a          n/a          n/a    1,253,658          n/a          n/a          n/a
CDQ DFA.........................................      127,100       50,840       35,588       76,260      125,366       50,146       35,102       75,219
ICA \1\.........................................       33,804          n/a          n/a          n/a       33,849          n/a          n/a          n/a
AFA Inshore.....................................      552,748      221,099      154,769      331,649      547,222      218,889      153,222      328,333
AFA Catcher/Processors \3\......................      442,198      176,879      123,816      265,319      437,777      175,111      122,578      262,666
Catch by C/Ps...................................      404,612      161,845          n/a      242,767      400,566      160,227          n/a      240,340
Catch by CVs \3\................................       37,587       15,035          n/a       22,552       37,211       14,884          n/a       22,327
Unlisted C/P Limit \4\..........................        2,211          884          n/a        1,327        2,189          876          n/a        1,313
AFA Motherships.................................      110,550       44,220       30,954       66,330      109,444       43,778       30,644       65,667
Excessive Harvesting Limit \5\..................      193,462          n/a          n/a          n/a      191,528          n/a          n/a          n/a
Excessive Processing Limit \6\..................      331,649          n/a          n/a          n/a      328,333          n/a          n/a          n/a
Total Bering Sea DFA............................    1,105,496      442,198      309,539      663,298    1,094,443      437,777      306,444      656,666
Aleutian Islands subarea \1\....................        4,600          n/a          n/a          n/a       19,000          n/a          n/a          n/a
CDQ DFA.........................................            0            0          n/a            0        1,900          760          n/a        1,140
ICA.............................................        1,600          800          n/a          800        1,600          800          n/a          800
Aleut Corporation...............................        3,000        3,000          n/a            0       15,500       15,500          n/a            0
Bogoslof District ICA \7\.......................          150          n/a          n/a          n/a          150          n/a          n/a          n/a
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A), the Bering Sea subarea pollock, after subtraction for the CDQ DFA (10 percent) and the ICA (3 percent), is
  allocated as a DFA as follows: inshore sector--50 percent, catcher/processor sector (C/P)--40 percent, and mothership sector--10 percent. In the
  Bering Sea subarea, 40 percent of the DFA is allocated to the A season (January 20-June 10) and 60 percent of the DFA is allocated to the B season
  (June 10-November 1). Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(iii)(B)(2)(i) and (ii), the annual AI pollock TAC, after subtracting first for the CDQ directed
  fishing allowance (10 percent) and second the ICA (1,600 mt), is allocated to the Aleut Corporation for a directed pollock fishery. In the AI subarea,
  the A season is allocated 40 percent of the ABC and the B season is allocated the remainder of the directed pollock fishery.
\2\ In the Bering Sea subarea, no more than 28 percent of each sector's annual DFA may be taken from the SCA before April 1. The remaining 12 percent of
  the annual DFA allocated to the A season may be taken outside of SCA before April 1 or inside the SCA after April 1. If less than 28 percent of the
  annual DFA is taken inside the SCA before April 1, the remainder will be available to be taken inside the SCA after April 1.
\3\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(4), not less than 8.5 percent of the DFA allocated to listed catcher/processors shall be available for harvest
  only by eligible catcher vessels delivering to listed catcher/processors.
\4\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(4)(iii), the AFA unlisted catcher/processors are limited to harvesting not more than 0.5 percent of the
  catcher/processors sector's allocation of pollock.
\5\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(6), NMFS establishes an excessive harvesting share limit equal to 17.5 percent of the sum of the non-CDQ
  pollock DFAs.
\6\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(7), NMFS establishes an excessive processing share limit equal to 30.0 percent of the sum of the non-CDQ
  pollock DFAs.
\7\ The Bogoslof District is closed by the final harvest specifications to directed fishing for pollock. The amounts specified are for ICA only and are
  not apportioned by season or sector.

Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently 
obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, 
NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior 
notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set 
forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from 
responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and 
would delay the reallocation of AI pollock. Since the pollock fishery 
is currently open, it is important to immediately inform the industry 
as to the final Bering Sea subarea pollock allocations. Immediate 
notification is necessary to allow for the orderly conduct and 
efficient operation of this fishery; allow the industry to plan for the 
fishing season and avoid potential disruption to the fishing fleet as 
well as processors; and provide opportunity to harvest increased 
seasonal pollock allocations while value is optimum. NMFS was unable to 
publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most 
recent, relevant data only became available as of March 2, 2011.
    The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the 
effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is 
based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and 
opportunity for public comment.
    This action is required by Sec.  679.20 and is exempt from review 
under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: March 3, 2011.
Emily H. Menashes,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2011-5234 Filed 3-7-11; 8:45 am]
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