[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 41 (Friday, March 1, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 13813-13834]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-04822]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 121018563-3148-02]
RIN 0648-XC311


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Bering Sea 
and Aleutian Islands; 2013 and 2014 Harvest Specifications for 
Groundfish

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

ACTION: Final rule; closures.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces final 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications and 
prohibited species catch allowances for the groundfish fishery of the 
Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is 
necessary to establish harvest limits for groundfish during the 2013 
and 2014 fishing years, and to accomplish the goals and objectives of 
the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the BSAI (FMP). The 
intended effect of this action is to conserve and manage the groundfish 
resources in the BSAI in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act).

DATES: Effective from 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 1, 
2013, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Electronic copies of the Final Alaska Groundfish Harvest 
Specifications Environmental Impact

[[Page 13814]]

Statement (EIS), Record of Decision (ROD), Supplementary Information 
Report (SIR) to the EIS, and the Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis 
(FRFA), prepared for this action are available from http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov. The final 2012 Stock Assessment and Fishery 
Evaluation (SAFE) report for the groundfish resources of the BSAI, 
dated November 2012, as well as the SAFE reports for previous years, 
are available from the North Pacific Fishery Management Council 
(Council) at 605 West 4th Avenue, Suite 306, Anchorage, AK 99510-2252, 
phone 907-271-2809, or from the Council's Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/npfmc.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Steve Whitney, 907-586-7228.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Federal regulations at 50 CFR part 679 
implement the FMP and govern the groundfish fisheries in the BSAI. The 
Council prepared the FMP, and NMFS approved it under the Magnuson-
Stevens Act. General regulations governing U.S. fisheries also appear 
at 50 CFR part 600.
    The FMP and its implementing regulations require NMFS, after 
consultation with the Council, to specify the total allowable catch 
(TAC) for each target species; the sum TAC for all groundfish species 
must be within the optimum yield (OY) range of 1.4 million to 2.0 
million metric tons (mt) (see Sec.  679.20(a)(1)(i)). This final rule 
specifies the TAC at 2.0 million mt for both 2013 and 2014. NMFS also 
must specify apportionments of TAC, prohibited species catch (PSC) 
allowances, and prohibited species quota (PSQ) reserves established by 
Sec.  679.21; seasonal allowances of pollock, Pacific cod, and Atka 
mackerel TAC; Amendment 80 allocations; and Community Development Quota 
(CDQ) reserve amounts established by Sec.  679.20(b)(1)(ii). The final 
harvest specifications set forth in Tables 1 through 22 of this action 
satisfy these requirements.
    Section 679.20(c)(3)(i) further requires NMFS to consider public 
comment on the proposed annual TACs (and apportionments thereof) and 
PSC allowances, and to publish final harvest specifications in the 
Federal Register. The proposed 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications and 
PSC allowances for the groundfish fishery of the BSAI were published in 
the Federal Register on December 6, 2012 (77 FR 72791). Comments were 
invited and accepted through January 7, 2013. NMFS received two letters 
with five comments on the proposed harvest specifications. These 
comments are summarized and responded to in the ``Response to 
Comments'' section of this rule. NMFS consulted with the Council on the 
final 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications during the December 2012 
Council meeting in Anchorage, AK. After considering public comments, as 
well as biological and economic data that were available at the 
Council's December meeting, NMFS is implementing the final 2013 and 
2014 harvest specifications as recommended by the Council.

Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) and TAC Harvest Specifications

    The final ABC levels for Alaska groundfish are based on the best 
available biological and socioeconomic information, including projected 
biomass trends, information on assumed distribution of stock biomass, 
and revised technical methods used to calculate stock biomass. In 
general, the development of ABCs and overfishing levels (OFLs) involves 
sophisticated statistical analyses of fish populations. The FMP 
specifies a series of six tiers to define OFL and ABC amounts based on 
the level of reliable information available to fishery scientists. Tier 
1 represents the highest level of information quality available while 
Tier 6 represents the lowest.
    In December 2012, the Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC), 
Advisory Panel (AP), and Council reviewed current biological 
information about the condition of the BSAI groundfish stocks. The 
Council's Plan Team compiled and presented this information in the 2012 
SAFE report for the BSAI groundfish fisheries, dated November 2012. The 
SAFE report contains a review of the latest scientific analyses and 
estimates of each species' biomass and other biological parameters, as 
well as summaries of the available information on the BSAI ecosystem 
and the economic condition of groundfish fisheries off Alaska. NMFS 
notified the public and asked for review of the SAFE report in the 
notice of proposed harvest specifications; the report is still 
available (see ADDRESSES). From these data and analyses, the Plan Team 
estimated an OFL and ABC for each species or species category.
    In December 2012, the SSC, AP, and Council reviewed the Plan Team's 
recommendations. Except for rougheye rockfish, the SSC concurred with 
the Plan Team's recommendations, and the Council adopted the OFL and 
ABC amounts recommended by the SSC (Table 1). For 2013 and 2014, the 
SSC recommended lower rougheye rockfish OFLs and ABCs than the OFLs and 
ABCs recommended by the Plan Team. For rougheye rockfish, the SSC 
recommended including the estimated recruitment from the 1998 through 
2009 time period to calculate the OFLs and ABCs, resulting in lower 
amounts. The final TAC recommendations were based on the ABCs as 
adjusted for other biological and socioeconomic considerations, 
including maintaining the sum of the TACs within the required OY range 
of 1.4 million to 2.0 million mt. As required by annual catch limit 
rules for all fisheries (74 FR 3178, January 16, 2009), none of the 
Council's recommended TACs for 2013 or 2014 exceeds the final 2013 or 
2014 ABCs for any species category. The final 2013 and 2014 harvest 
specifications approved by the Secretary of Commerce are unchanged from 
those recommended by the Council and are consistent with the preferred 
harvest strategy alternative in the EIS (see ADDRESSES). NMFS finds 
that the Council's recommended OFLs, ABCs, and TACs are consistent with 
the biological condition of groundfish stocks as described in the 2012 
SAFE report that was approved by the Council.

Changes From the Proposed 2013 and 2014 Harvest Specifications for the 
BSAI

    In October 2012, the Council proposed its recommendations for the 
2013 and 2014 harvest specifications (77 FR 72791, December 6, 2012), 
based largely on information contained in the 2011 SAFE report for the 
BSAI groundfish fisheries. Through the proposed harvest specifications, 
NMFS notified the public that these harvest specifications could 
change, as the Council would consider information contained in the 
final 2012 SAFE report, recommendations from the SSC, Plan Team, and AP 
committees, and public testimony when making its recommendations for 
final harvest specification at the December Council meeting. NMFS 
further notified the public that, as required by the FMP and its 
implementing regulations, the sum of the TACs must be within the OY 
range of 1.4 million and 2.0 million mt.
    Information contained in the 2012 SAFE reports indicates biomass 
changes for several groundfish species from the 2011 SAFE reports. At 
the December 2012 Council meeting, the SSC recommended the 2013 and 
2014 ABCs for many species based on the best and most recent 
information contained in the 2012 SAFE reports. This recommendation 
resulted in an ABC sum total for all BSAI groundfish species in excess 
of 2 million mt for both 2013 and 2014. Based on the SSC ABC 
recommendations and the 2012

[[Page 13815]]

SAFE reports, the Council recommends increasing Bering Sea pollock by 
45,100 mt. In terms of percentage, the largest increases in TACs were 
for BSAI squid and BSAI Pacific ocean perch. Both of these species are 
valuable, and likely to be harvested to the full TAC available. The 
Council increased the squid TAC due to increased incidental catch in 
2012, and increased the Pacific ocean perch TACs due to higher ABCs, 
resulting from larger biomass estimates. Conversely, the SSC decreased 
the OFL and ABC of BSAI Atka mackerel from the proposed OFL and ABC, 
and these reductions led to the largest decrease in TAC in terms of 
tonnage. In terms of percentage change from the proposed TACs, Bogoslof 
pollock and BSAI Greenland turbot had the largest decreases in TAC. 
These decreases are due to lower incidental catches of Bogoslof pollock 
in 2012, and lower biomass estimates of Greenland turbot. The TACs for 
shortraker rockfish and rougheye rockfish were also decreased because 
of smaller OFLs and ABCs resulting from lower biomass estimates. The 
TACS for octopuses, sharks, ``other rockfish,'' northern rockfish, 
Alaska plaice, flathead sole, and Kamchatka flounder were all decreased 
because harvests in 2012 were much less than the proposed 2013 TACs. 
The changes to TAC between the proposed and final harvest 
specifications are based on the most recent scientific and economic 
information and are consistent with the FMP, regulatory obligations, 
and harvest strategy as described in the proposed harvest 
specifications. These changes are compared in Table 1A.
    Table 1 lists the Council's recommended final 2013 and 2014 OFL, 
ABC, TAC, ITAC, and CDQ reserve amounts of the BSAI groundfish. NMFS 
concurs in these recommendations. The final 2013 and 2014 TAC 
recommendations for the BSAI are within the OY range established for 
the BSAI and do not exceed the ABC for any species or species group. 
The apportionment of TAC amounts among fisheries and seasons is 
discussed below.

 Table 1--Final 2013 and 2014 Overfishing Level (OFL), Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC), Total Allowable Catch (TAC), Initial TAC (ITAC), and CDQ Reserve Allocation of Groundfish in the BSAI
                                                                                               \1\
                                                                                  [Amounts are in metric tons]
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                                                                                                             2013                                                   2014
                    Species                                     Area               -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                       OFL        ABC        TAC      ITAC \2\   CDQ \3\      OFL        ABC        TAC      ITAC \2\   CDQ \3\
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Pollock \4\....................................  BS...............................  2,550,000  1,375,000  1,247,000  1,122,300    124,700  2,730,000  1,430,000  1,247,000  1,122,300    124,700
                                                 AI...............................     45,600     37,300     19,000     17,100      1,900     48,600     39,800     19,000     17,100      1,900
                                                 Bogoslof.........................     13,400     10,100        100        500          0     13,400     10,100        100        500          0
Pacific cod \5\................................  BSAI.............................    359,000    307,000    260,000    232,180     27,820    379,000    323,000    260,880    232,966     27,914
Sablefish......................................  BS...............................      1,870      1,580      1,580      1,304        217      1,760      1,480      1,480        629         56
                                                 AI...............................      2,530      2,140      2,140      1,739        361      2,370      2,010      2,010        427         38
Atka mackerel..................................  BSAI.............................     57,700     50,000     25,920     23,147      2,773     56,500     48,900     25,379     22,663      2,716
                                                 EAI/BS...........................        n/a     16,900     16,900     15,092      1,808        n/a     16,500     16,500     14,735      1,766
                                                 CAI..............................        n/a     16,000      7,520      6,715        805        n/a     15,700      7,379      6,589        790
                                                 WAI..............................        n/a     17,100      1,500      1,340        161        n/a     16,700      1,500      1,340        161
Yellowfin sole.................................  BSAI.............................    220,000    206,000    198,000    176,814     21,186    219,000    206,000    198,000    176,814     21,186
Rock sole......................................  BSAI.............................    241,000    214,000     92,380     82,495      9,885    229,000    204,000     92,000     82,156      9,844
Greenland turbot...............................  BSAI.............................      2,540      2,060      2,060      1,751        n/a      3,270      2,650      2,650      2,253        n/a
                                                 BS...............................        n/a      1,610      1,610      1,369        172        n/a      2,070      2,070      1,760        221
                                                 AI...............................        n/a        450        450        383          0        n/a        580        580        493          0
Arrowtooth flounder............................  BSAI.............................    186,000    152,000     25,000     21,250      2,675    186,000    152,000     25,000     21,250      2,675
Kamchatka flounder.............................  BSAI.............................     16,300     12,200     10,000      8,500          0     16,300     12,200     10,000      8,500          0
Flathead sole \6\..............................  BSAI.............................     81,500     67,900     22,699     20,270      2,429     80,100     66,700     22,543     20,131      2,412
Other flatfish \7\.............................  BSAI.............................     17,800     13,300      3,500      2,975          0     17,800     13,300      4,000      3,400          0
Alaska plaice..................................  BSAI.............................     67,000     55,200     20,000     17,000          0     60,200     55,800     20,000     17,000          0
Pacific ocean perch............................  BSAI.............................     41,900     35,100     35,100     30,995        n/a     39,500     33,100     33,100     29,228        n/a
                                                 BS...............................        n/a      8,130      8,130      6,911          0        n/a      7,680      7,680      6,528          0
                                                 EAI..............................        n/a      9,790      9,790      8,742      1,048        n/a      9,240      9,240      8,251        989
                                                 CAI..............................        n/a      6,980      6,980      6,233        747        n/a      6,590      6,590      5,885        705
                                                 WAI..............................        n/a     10,200     10,200      9,109      1,091        n/a      9,590      9,590      8,564      1,026
Northern rockfish..............................  BSAI.............................     12,200      9,850      3,000      2,550          0     12,000      9,320      3,000      2,550          0
Shortraker rockfish............................  BSAI.............................        493        370        370        315          0        493        370        370        315          0
Rougheye rockfish \8\..........................  BSAI.............................        462        378        378        321          0        524        429        429        365          0
                                                 EBS/EAI..........................        n/a        169        169        144          0        n/a        189        189        161          0
                                                 CAI/WAI..........................        n/a        209        209        178          0        n/a        240        240        204          0
Other rockfish \9\.............................  BSAI.............................      1,540      1,159        873        742          0      1,540      1,159      1,159        985          0
                                                 BS...............................        n/a        686        400        340          0        n/a        686        686        583          0
                                                 AI...............................        n/a        473        473        402          0        n/a        473        473        402          0
Skates.........................................  BSAI.............................     45,800     38,800     24,000     20,400          0     44,100     37,300     25,000     21,250          0
Sculpins.......................................  BSAI.............................     56,400     42,300      5,600      4,760          0     56,400     42,300      5,600      4,760          0
Sharks.........................................  BSAI.............................      1,360      1,020        100         85          0      1,360      1,020        100         85          0
Squids.........................................  BSAI.............................      2,620      1,970        700        595          0      2,620      1,970        700        595          0
Octopuses......................................  BSAI.............................      3,450      2,590        500        425          0      3,450      2,590        500        425          0
                                                                                   -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    TOTAL......................................  .................................  4,028,465  2,639,317  2,000,000  1,790,512    197,004  4,205,287  2,697,498  2,000,000  1,788,646    196,381
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\1\ These amounts apply to the entire BSAI management area unless otherwise specified. With the exception of pollock, and for the purpose of these harvest specifications, the Bering Sea (BS)
  subarea includes the Bogoslof District.
\2\ Except for pollock, the portion of the sablefish TAC allocated to hook-and-line and pot gear, and Amendment 80 species, 15 percent of each TAC is put into a reserve. The ITAC for these
  species is the remainder of the TAC after the subtraction of these reserves. For pollock and Amendment 80 species, ITAC is the non-CDQ allocation of TAC (see footnotes 3 and 5).
\3\ For the Amendment 80 species (Atka mackerel, flathead sole, rock sole, yellowfin sole, Pacific cod, and Aleutian Islands Pacific ocean perch), 10.7 percent of the TAC is reserved for use
  by CDQ participants (see Sec.  Sec.   679.20(b)(1)(ii)(C) and 679.31). Twenty percent of the sablefish TAC allocated to hook-and-line gear or pot gear, 7.5 percent of the sablefish TAC
  allocated to trawl gear, and 10.7 percent of the TACs for Bering Sea Greenland turbot and arrowtooth flounder are reserved for use by CDQ participants (see Sec.   679.20(b)(1)(ii)(B) and
  (D)). Aleutian Islands Greenland turbot, ``other flatfish,'' Alaska plaice, Bering Sea Pacific ocean perch, northern rockfish, shortraker rockfish, rougheye rockfish, ``other rockfish,''
  skates, sculpins, sharks, squids, and octopuses are not allocated to the CDQ program.
\4\ Under Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(1), the annual BS subarea pollock TAC after subtracting first for the CDQ directed fishing allowance (10 percent) and second for the incidental catch
  allowance (4.0 percent), is further allocated by sector for a directed pollock fishery as follows: inshore--50 percent; catcher/processor--40 percent; and motherships--10 percent. Under Sec.
    679.20(a)(5)(iii)(B)(2)(i) and (ii), the annual Aleutian Islands subarea pollock TAC, after subtracting first for the CDQ directed fishing allowance (10 percent) and second for the
  incidental catch allowance (1,600 mt) is allocated to the Aleut Corporation for a directed pollock fishery.

[[Page 13816]]

 
\5\ The Pacific cod TAC is reduced by 3 percent from the ABC to account for the State of Alaska's (State) guideline harvest level in State waters of the Aleutian Islands subarea.
\6\ ``Flathead sole'' includes Hippoglossoides elassodon (flathead sole) and Hippoglossoides robustus (Bering flounder).
\7\ ``Other flatfish'' includes all flatfish species, except for halibut (a prohibited species), flathead sole, Greenland turbot, rock sole, yellowfin sole, arrowtooth flounder, Kamchatka
  flounder, and Alaska plaice.
\8\ ``Rougheye rockfish'' includes Sebastes aleutianus (rougheye) and Sebastes melanostictus (blackspotted).
\9\ ``Other rockfish'' includes all Sebastes and Sebastolobus species except for Pacific ocean perch, northern rockfish, dark rockfish, shortraker rockfish, and rougheye rockfish.
Note: Regulatory areas and districts are defined at Sec.   679.2 (BS = Bering Sea subarea, AI = Aleutian Islands subarea, EAI = Eastern Aleutian Islands district, CAI = Central Aleutian
  Islands district, WAI = Western Aleutian Islands district.)


                        Table 1A--Comparison of Final 2013 and 2014 With Proposed 2013 and 2014 Total Allowable Catch in the BSAI
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
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                                                                                               2013                                            2014
              Species                     Area \1\        2013 Final TAC  2013  Proposed    Difference    2014 Final TAC  2014  Proposed    Difference
                                                                                TAC        from proposed                        TAC        from proposed
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Pollock...........................  BS..................       1,247,000       1,201,900          45,100       1,247,000       1,201,900          45,100
                                    AI..................          19,000          19,000               0          19,000          19,000               0
                                    Bogoslof............             100             500            -400             100             500            -400
Pacific cod.......................  BSAI................         260,000         262,900          -2,900         260,880         262,900          -2,020
Sablefish.........................  BS..................           1,580           2,200            -620           1,480           2,200            -720
                                    AI..................           2,140           2,020             120           2,010           2,020             -10
Atka mackerel.....................  EAI/BS..............          16,900          31,700         -14,800          16,500          31,700         -15,200
                                    CAI.................           7,520           8,883          -1,363           7,379           8,883          -1,504
                                    WAI.................           1,500           1,500               0           1,500           1,500               0
Yellowfin sole....................  BSAI................         198,000         203,900          -5,900         198,000         203,900          -5,900
Rock sole.........................  BSAI................          92,380          87,000           5,380          92,000          87,000           5,000
Greenland turbot..................  BS..................           1,610           6,010          -4,400           2,070           6,010          -3,940
                                    AI..................             450           2,020          -1,570             580           2,020          -1,440
Arrowtooth flounder...............  BSAI................          25,000          25,000               0          25,000          25,000               0
Kamchatka flounder................  BSAI................          10,000          17,700          -7,700          10,000          17,700          -7,700
Flathead sole.....................  BSAI................          22,699          34,134         -11,435          22,543          34,134         -11,591
Other flatfish....................  BSAI................           3,500           3,200             300           4,000           3,200             800
Alaska plaice.....................  BSAI................          20,000          24,000          -4,000          20,000          24,000          -4,000
Pacific ocean perch...............  BS..................           8,130           6,540           1,590           7,680           6,540           1,140
                                    EAI.................           9,790           6,440           3,350           9,240           6,440           2,800
                                    CAI.................           6,980           5,710           1,270           6,590           5,710             880
                                    WAI.................          10,200           9,610             590           9,590           9,610             -20
Northern rockfish.................  BSAI................           3,000           4,700          -1,700           3,000           4,700          -1,700
Shortraker rockfish...............  BSAI................             370             393             -23             370             393             -23
Rougheye rockfish.................  BS/EAI..............             169             241             -72             189             241             -52
                                    CAI/WAI.............             209             258             -49             240             258             -18
Other rockfish....................  BS..................             400             500            -100             686             500             186
                                    AI..................             473             570             -97             473             570             -97
Skates............................  BSAI................          24,000          24,746            -746          25,000          24,746             254
Sculpins..........................  BSAI................           5,600           5,200             400           5,600           5,200             400
Sharks............................  BSAI................             100             200            -100             100             200            -100
Squids............................  BSAI................             700             425             275             700             425             275
Octopuses.........................  BSAI................             500             900            -400             500             900            -400
    TOTAL.........................  BSAI................       2,000,000       2,000,000               0       2,000,000       2,000,000               0
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\1\ Bering Sea subarea (BS), Aleutian Islands subarea (AI), Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI), Eastern Aleutian District (EAI),
  Central Aleutian District (CAI), and Western Aleutian District (WAI).

Groundfish Reserves and the Incidental Catch Allowance (ICA) for 
Pollock, Atka Mackerel, Flathead Sole, Rock Sole, Yellowfin Sole, and 
Aleutian Islands Pacific Ocean Perch

    Section 679.20(b)(1)(i) requires NMFS to reserve 15 percent of the 
TAC for each target species, except for pollock, hook-and-line and pot 
gear allocation of sablefish, and Amendment 80 species, in a non-
specified reserve. Section 679.20(b)(1)(ii)(B) requires that 20 percent 
of the hook-and-line and pot gear allocation of sablefish be set aside 
for the fixed-gear sablefish CDQ reserve. Section 679.20(b)(1)(ii)(D) 
requires NMFS to allocate 7.5 percent of the trawl gear allocations of 
sablefish and 10.7 percent of the Bering Sea Greenland turbot and 
arrowtooth flounder TACs to the respective CDQ reserves. Under section 
679.20(b)(1)(ii)(C), NMFS must allocate 10.7 percent of the TAC for 
Atka mackerel, Aleutian Islands Pacific ocean perch, yellowfin sole, 
rock sole, flathead sole, and Pacific cod to the CDQ reserves. Sections 
679.20(a)(5)(i)(A) and 679.31(a) also require that 10 percent of the 
BSAI pollock TAC be allocated to the pollock CDQ directed fishing 
allowance (DFA). The entire Bogoslof District pollock TAC is allocated 
as an ICA (see Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(ii)). With the exception of the hook-
and-line and pot gear sablefish CDQ reserve, the regulations do not 
further apportion the CDQ allocations by gear.
    Pursuant to Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(1), NMFS allocates a pollock 
ICA of 3 percent of the BS subarea pollock TAC after subtracting the 10 
percent CDQ reserve. This allowance is based on NMFS' examination of 
the pollock incidental catch, including the incidental catch by CDQ 
vessels, in target fisheries other than pollock from 1999 through 2012. 
During this 14-year period, the pollock incidental catch ranged from a 
low of 2.3 percent in 2012

[[Page 13817]]

to a high of 5 percent in 1999, with a 14-year average of 3.2 percent. 
Pursuant to Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(iii)(B)(2)(i) and (ii), NMFS establishes 
a pollock ICA of 1,600 mt of the AI subarea TAC after subtracting the 
10-percent CDQ DFA. This allowance is based on NMFS' examination of the 
pollock incidental catch, including the incidental catch by CDQ 
vessels, in target fisheries other than pollock from 2003 through 2012. 
During this 10-year period, the incidental catch of pollock ranged from 
a low of 5 percent in 2006 to a high of 10 percent in 2003, with a 10-
year average of 7 percent.
    Pursuant to Sec.  679.20(a)(8) and (10), NMFS allocates ICAs of 
5,000 mt of flathead sole, 10,000 mt of rock sole, 2,000 mt of 
yellowfin sole, 10 mt of Western Aleutian District (WAI) Pacific ocean 
perch, 75 mt of Central Aleutian District (CAI) Pacific ocean perch, 
200 mt of Eastern Aleutian District (EAI) Pacific ocean perch, 40 mt of 
WAI Atka mackerel, 75 mt of CAI Atka mackerel, and 1,000 mt of EAI and 
BS subarea Atka mackerel TAC after subtracting the 10.7 percent CDQ 
reserve. These ICA allowances are based on NMFS' examination of the 
incidental catch in other target fisheries from 2003 through 2012.
    The regulations do not designate the remainder of the non-specified 
reserve by species or species group. Any amount of the reserve may be 
apportioned to a target species category during the year, provided that 
such apportionments do not result in overfishing (see Sec.  
679.20(b)(1)(i)). The Regional Administrator has determined that the 
ITACs specified for the species listed in Table 1 need to be 
supplemented from the non-specified reserve because U.S. fishing 
vessels have demonstrated the capacity to catch the full TAC 
allocations. Therefore, in accordance with Sec.  679.20(b)(3), NMFS is 
apportioning the amounts shown in Table 2 from the non-specified 
reserve to increase the ITAC for shortraker rockfish, rougheye 
rockfish, northern rockfish, Pacific ocean perch, ``other rockfish,'' 
skates, sculpins, sharks, and octopuses by 15 percent of the TAC in 
2013 and 2014.

                                        Table 2--Final 2013 and 2014 Apportionment of Reserves to ITAC Categories
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                           2013 Reserve     2013 Final                     2014 Reserve     2014 Final
                 Species-area or subarea                     2013 ITAC        amount           ITAC          2014 ITAC        amount           ITAC
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Shortraker rockfish-BSAI................................             315              56             370             315              56             370
Rougheye rockfish-EBS/EAI...............................             144              25             169             161              28             189
Rougheye rockfish-CAI/WAI...............................             178              31             209             204              36             240
Northern rockfish-BSAI..................................           2,550             450           3,000           2,550             450           3,000
Pacific ocean perch-Bering Sea subarea..................           6,911           1,220           8,130           6,528           1,152           7,680
Other rockfish-Bering Sea subarea.......................             340              60             400             583             103             686
Other rockfish-Aleutian Islands subarea.................             402              71             473             402              71             473
Skates-BSAI.............................................          20,400           3,600          24,000          21,250           3,750          25,000
Sculpins-BSAI...........................................           4,760             840           5,600           4,760             840           5,600
Sharks-BSAI.............................................              85              15             100              85              15             100
Octopuses-BSAI..........................................             425              75             500             425              75             500
    Total...............................................          36,508           6,443          42,951          37,262           6,576          43,838
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Allocation of Pollock TAC Under the American Fisheries Act (AFA)

    Section 679.20(a)(5)(i)(A) requires that the BS subarea pollock TAC 
be apportioned, after subtracting 10 percent for the CDQ program and 3 
percent for the ICA, as a DFA as follows: 50 percent to the inshore 
sector, 40 percent to the catcher/processor (C/P) sector, and 10 
percent to the mothership sector. In the BS 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) (Sec.  
679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)). The AI-directed pollock fishery allocation to the 
Aleut Corporation is the amount of pollock remaining in the AI subarea 
after subtracting 1,900 mt for the CDQ DFA (10 percent) and 1,600 mt 
for the ICA (Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(iii)(B)(2)(ii)). In the AI subarea, 40 
percent of the DFA is allocated to the A season and the remainder of 
the directed pollock fishery is allocated to the B season. Table 3 
lists these 2013 and 2014 amounts.
    Section 679.20(a)(5)(i)(A)(4) also includes several specific 
requirements regarding BS subarea pollock allocations. First, it 
requires that 8.5 percent of the pollock allocated to the C/P sector be 
available for harvest by AFA catcher vessels (CVs) with C/P sector 
endorsements, unless the Regional Administrator receives a cooperative 
contract that allows the distribution of harvest among AFA C/Ps and AFA 
CVs in a manner agreed to by all members. Second, AFA C/Ps not listed 
in the AFA are limited to harvesting not more than 0.5 percent of the 
pollock allocated to the C/P sector. Table 4 lists the 2013 and 2014 
allocations of pollock TAC. Tables 17 through 22 list the AFA C/P and 
CV harvesting sideboard limits. The tables for the pollock allocations 
to the BS subarea inshore pollock cooperatives and open access sector 
will be posted on the Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov.
    Table 3 also lists seasonal apportionments of pollock and harvest 
limits within the Steller Sea Lion Conservation Area (SCA). The harvest 
within the SCA, as defined at Sec.  679.22(a)(7)(vii), is limited to no 
more than 28 percent of the annual DFA before 12:00 noon, April 1, as 
provided in Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(i)(C). The A season pollock SCA harvest 
limit will be apportioned to each sector in proportion to each sector's 
allocated percentage of the DFA. Table 3 lists these 2013 and 2014 
amounts by sector.

[[Page 13818]]



     Table 3--Final 2013 and 2014 Allocations of Pollock TACS to the Directed Pollock Fisheries and to the CDQ Directed Fishing Allowances (DFA) \1\
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   2013 A Season \1\        2013 B                     2014 A Season \1\        2014 B
                                                              --------------------------  Season \1\              --------------------------  Season \1\
                 Area and sector                      2013                      SCA     -------------     2014                      SCA     ------------
                                                  Allocations    A Season     Harvest      B Season   Allocations    A Season     Harvest      B Season
                                                                   DFA       limit \2\       DFA                       DFA       limit \2\       DFA
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bering Sea subarea..............................    1,247,000          n/a          n/a          n/a    1,247,000          n/a          n/a          n/a
CDQ DFA.........................................      124,700       49,880       34,916       74,820      124,700       49,880       34,916       74,820
ICA \1\.........................................       33,669          n/a          n/a          n/a       33,669          n/a          n/a          n/a
AFA Inshore.....................................      544,316      217,726      152,408      326,589      544,316      217,726      152,408      326,589
AFA Catcher/Processors \3\......................      435,452      174,181      121,927      261,271      435,452      174,181      121,927      261,271
Catch by C/Ps...................................      398,439      159,376          n/a      239,063      398,439      159,376          n/a      239,063
Catch by CVs \3\................................       37,013       14,805          n/a       22,208       37,013       14,805          n/a       22,208
Unlisted C/P Limit \4\..........................        2,177          871          n/a        1,306        2,177          871          n/a        1,306
AFA Motherships.................................      108,863       43,545       30,482       65,318      108,863       43,545       30,482       65,318
Excessive Harvesting Limit \5\..................      190,510          n/a          n/a          n/a      190,510          n/a          n/a          n/a
Excessive Processing Limit \6\..................      326,589          n/a          n/a          n/a      326,589          n/a          n/a          n/a
    Total Bering Sea DFA........................    1,088,631      435,452      304,817      653,179    1,088,631      435,452      304,817      653,179
Aleutian Islands subarea \1\....................       19,000          n/a          n/a          n/a       19,000          n/a          n/a          n/a
CDQ DFA.........................................        1,900          760          n/a        1,140        1,900          760          n/a        1,140
ICA.............................................        1,600          800          n/a          800        1,600          800          n/a          800
Aleut Corporation...............................       15,500       13,360          n/a        2,140       15,500       14,360          n/a        1,140
Bogoslof District ICA \7\.......................          100          n/a          n/a          n/a          100          n/a          n/a          n/a
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Pursuant to Sec.   679.20(a)(5)(i)(A), the BS subarea pollock, after subtracting 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 BS 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 BS subarea, no more than 28 percent of each sector's annual DFA may be taken from the SCA before 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.
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.

Allocation of the Atka Mackerel TACs

    Section 679.20(a)(8) allocates the Atka mackerel TACs to the 
Amendment 80 and BSAI trawl limited access sectors, after subtracting 
the CDQ reserves, jig gear allocation, and ICAs for the BSAI trawl 
limited access sector and non-trawl gear sector (Table 4). The process 
for allocating the ITAC for Atka mackerel to the Amendment 80 and BSAI 
trawl limited access sectors is listed in Table 33 to part 679 and in 
Sec.  679.91. Pursuant to Sec.  679.20(a)(8)(i), up to 2 percent of the 
EAI and the BS subarea Atka mackerel ITAC may be allocated to the jig 
gear sector. Allocation is recommended annually by the Council based on 
several criteria, including the anticipated harvest capacity of the jig 
gear fleet. The Council recommended, and NMFS approves, a 0.5 percent 
allocation of the Atka mackerel ITAC in the EAI and BS subarea to the 
jig gear sector in 2013 and 2014. This percentage is applied to the 
Atka mackerel TAC after subtracting the CDQ reserve and the ICA.
    Section 679.20(a)(8)(ii)(C)(3) limits the annual Atka mackerel TAC 
for Area 542 (the CAI) to no more than 47 percent of the Area 542 ABC. 
Section 679.7(a)(19) prohibits retention of Atka mackerel in Area 543 
(the WAI), and the TAC is set to account for discards in other 
fisheries. Section 679.20(a)(8)(ii)(A) apportions the Atka mackerel TAC 
into two equal seasonal allowances. Section 679.23(e)(3) sets the first 
seasonal allowance for directed fishing with trawl gear from January 20 
through June 10 (A season), and the second seasonal allowance from June 
10 through November 1 (B season). Section 679.23(e)(4)(iii) applies 
Atka mackerel seasons to CDQ Atka mackerel fishing. The ICA and jig 
gear allocations are not apportioned by season.
    Sections 679.20(a)(8)(ii)(C)(1)(i) and (ii) require the Amendment 
80 cooperatives and CDQ groups to limit harvest to 10 percent of their 
Central Aleutian District Atka mackerel allocation equally divided 
between the A and B seasons, within waters 10 nm to 20 nm of Gramp Rock 
and Tag Island, as described on Table 12 to part 679. Vessels not 
fishing under the authority of an Amendment 80 cooperative quota or CDQ 
allocation are prohibited from conducting directed fishing for Atka 
mackerel inside Steller sea lion critical habitat in the Central 
Aleutian District.
    Table 4 lists these 2013 and 2014 Atka mackerel season and area 
allowances, as well as the sector allocations. The 2014 allocations for 
Atka mackerel between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 
limited access sector will not be known until eligible participants 
apply for participation in the program by November 1, 2013. NMFS will 
post 2014 Amendment 80 allocations when they become available in 
December 2013.

[[Page 13819]]



 Table 4--Final 2013 and 2014 Seasonal and Spatial Allowances, Gear Shares, CDQ Reserve, Incidental Catch Allowance, and Amendment 80 Allocations of the
                                                                 BSAI ATKA Mackerel TAC
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                   2013 allocation by area                2014 allocation by area
                                                                           -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                              Eastern                                Eastern
                 Sector \1\                           Season 2,3,4            Aleutian   Central \5\    Western      Aleutian   Central \5\    Western
                                                                             District/     Aleutian     Aleutian    District/     Aleutian     Aleutian
                                                                             Bering Sea    District     District    Bering Sea    District     District
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TAC........................................  n/a..........................       16,900        7,520        1,500       16,500        7,379        1,500
CDQ reserve................................  Total........................        1,808          805          161        1,766          790          161
                                             A............................          904          402           80          883          395           80
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a           40          n/a          n/a           39          n/a
                                             B............................          904          402           80          883          395           80
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a           40          n/a          n/a           39          n/a
ICA........................................  Total........................        1,000           75           40        1,000           75           40
Jig \6\....................................  Total........................           70            0            0           69            0            0
BSAI trawl limited access..................  Total........................        1,402          664            0        1,367          651            0
                                             A............................          701          332            0          683          326            0
                                             B............................          701          332            0          683          326            0
Amendment 80 sectors.......................  Total........................       12,619        5,976        1,300       12,299        5,863        1,300
                                             A............................        6,310        2,988          650        6,150        2,932          650
                                             B............................        6,310        2,988          650        6,150        2,932          650
Alaska Groundfish Cooperative \7\..........  Total \7\....................        7,271        3,563          783          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             A............................        3,636        1,782          392          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a          178          n/a          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             B............................        3,636        1,782          392          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a          178          n/a          n/a          n/a          n/a
Alaska Seafood Cooperative \7\.............  Total \7\....................        5,348        2,414          517          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             A............................        2,674        1,207          259          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a          121          n/a          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             B............................        2,674        1,207          259          n/a          n/a          n/a
                                             Critical Habitat \5\.........          n/a          121          n/a          n/a          n/a          n/a
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Section 679.20(a)(8)(ii) allocates the Atka mackerel TACs, after subtracting the CDQ reserves, jig gear allocation, and ICAs to the Amendment 80 and
  BSAI trawl limited access sectors. The allocation of the ITAC for Atka mackerel to the Amendment 80 and BSAI trawl limited access sectors is
  established in Table 33 to part 679 and Sec.   679.91. The CDQ reserve is 10.7 percent of the TAC for use by CDQ participants (see Sec.  Sec.
  679.20(b)(1)(ii)(C) and 679.31).
\2\ Regulations at Sec.  Sec.   679.20(a)(8)(ii)(A) and 679.22(a) establish temporal and spatial limitations for the Atka mackerel fishery.
\3\ The seasonal allowances of Atka mackerel are 50 percent in the A season and 50 percent in the B season.
\4\ Section 679.23(e)(3) authorizes directed fishing for Atka mackerel with trawl gear during the A season from January 20 to June 10 and the B season
  from June 10 to November 1.
\5\ Section 679.20(a)(8)(ii)(C) requires the TAC in area 542 shall be no more than 47% of ABC, and Atka mackerel harvests for Amendment 80 cooperatives
  and CDQ groups within waters 10 nm to 20 nm of Gramp Rock and Tag Island, as described Table 12 to part 679, in Area 542 are limited to no more than
  10 percent of the Amendment 80 cooperative Atka mackerel allocation or 10 percent of the CDQ Atka mackerel allocation.
\6\ Section 679.20(a)(8)(i) requires that up to 2 percent of the Eastern Aleutian District and the Bering Sea subarea TAC be allocated to jig gear after
  subtracting the CDQ reserve and ICA. The amount of this allocation is 0.5 percent. The jig gear allocation is not apportioned by season.
\7\ The 2014 allocations for Atka mackerel between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited access sector will not be known until eligible
  participants apply for participation in the program by November 1, 2013. NMFS will post 2014 Amendment 80 allocations when they become available in
  December 2013.
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.

Allocation of the Pacific Cod ITAC

    Sections 679.20(a)(7)(i) and (ii) allocate the Pacific cod TAC in 
the BSAI, after subtracting 10.7 percent for the CDQ reserve, as 
follows: 1.4 percent to vessels using jig gear; 2.0 percent to hook-
and-line and pot CVs less than 60 ft (18.3 m) length overall (LOA); 0.2 
percent to hook-and-line CVs greater than or equal to 60 ft (18.3 m) 
LOA; 48.7 percent to hook-and-line C/P; 8.4 percent to pot CVs greater 
than or equal to 60 ft (18.3 m) LOA; 1.5 percent to pot C/Ps; 2.3 
percent to AFA trawl C/Ps; 13.4 percent to non-AFA trawl C/Ps; and 22.1 
percent to trawl CVs. The ICA for the hook-and-line and pot sectors 
will be deducted from the aggregate portion of Pacific cod TAC 
allocated to the hook-and-line and pot sectors. For 2013 and 2014, the 
Regional Administrator establishes an ICA of 500 mt based on 
anticipated incidental catch by these sectors in other fisheries.
    The ITAC allocation of Pacific cod to the Amendment 80 sector is 
established in Table 33 to part 679 and Sec.  679.91. The 2014 
allocations for Amendment 80 species between Amendment 80 cooperatives 
and the Amendment 80 limited access sector will not be known until 
eligible participants apply for participation in the program by 
November 1, 2013. NMFS will post 2014 Amendment 80 allocations when 
they become available in December 2013.
    The Pacific cod ITAC is apportioned into seasonal allowances to 
disperse the Pacific cod fisheries over the fishing year (see 
Sec. Sec.  679.20(a)(7) and 679.23(e)(5)). In accordance with Sec.  
679.20(a)(7)(iv)(B) and (C), any unused portion of a seasonal Pacific 
cod allowance will become available at the beginning of the next 
seasonal allowance.
    The CDQ and non-CDQ season allowances by gear based on the 2013 and 
2014 Pacific cod TACs are listed in Tables 5 and 6, and are based on 
the sector allocation percentages of Pacific cod set forth at 
Sec. Sec.  679.20(a)(7)(i)(B) and 679.20(a)(7)(iv)(A); and the seasonal 
allowances of Pacific cod set forth at Sec.  679.23(e)(5).
    Section 679.7(a)(19) prohibits retaining Pacific cod in Area 543, 
and

[[Page 13820]]

Sec.  679.7(a)(23) prohibits directed fishing for Pacific cod with 
hook-and-line, pot, or jig gear in the Aleutian Islands subarea 
November 1 through December 31.

               Table 5--Final 2013 Gear Shares and Seasonal Allowances of the BSAI Pacific Cod TAC
                                          [Amounts are in metric tons]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                 2013 Share                       2013 Seasonal apportionment
                                                  of gear      2013 Share of  ----------------------------------
            Gear sector               Percent      sector      sector total
                                                   total                               Seasons           Amount
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total TAC..........................        100      260,000               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
CDQ................................       10.7       27,820               n/a  see Sec.                      n/a
                                                                                679.20(a)(7)(i)(B).
Total hook-and-line/pot gear.......       60.8      141,165               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
Hook-and-line/pot ICA \1\..........        n/a          500               n/a  see Sec.                      n/a
                                                                                679.20(a)(7)(ii)(B).
Hook-and-line/pot sub-total........        n/a      140,665               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
Hook-and-line catcher/processor....       48.7          n/a           112,671  Jan 1-Jun 10..........     57,462
                                                                               Jun 10-Dec 31.........     55,209
Hook-and-line catcher vessel               0.2          n/a               463  Jan 1-Jun 10..........        236
 [gteqt] 60 ft LOA.
                                                                               Jun 10-Dec 31.........        227
Pot catcher/processor..............        1.5          n/a             3,470  Jan 1-Jun 10..........      1,770
                                                                               Sept 1-Dec 31.........      1,700
Pot catcher vessel >= 60 ft LOA....        8.4          n/a            19,434  Jan 1-Jun 10..........      9,911
                                                                               Sept 1-Dec 31.........      9,523
Catcher vessel < 60 ft LOA using             2          n/a             4,627  n/a...................        n/a
 hook-and-line or pot gear.
Trawl catcher vessel...............       22.1       51,312               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........     37,971
                                                                               Apr 1-Jun 10..........      5,644
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........      7,697
AFA trawl catcher/processor........        2.3        5,340               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........      4,005
                                                                               Apr 1- Jun 10.........      1,335
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Amendment 80.......................       13.4       31,112               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........     23,334
                                                                               Apr 1- Jun 10.........      7,778
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Alaska Groundfish Cooperative......        n/a          n/a             5,793  Jan 20-Apr 1..........      4,345
                                                                               Apr 1- Jun 10.........      1,448
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Alaska Seafood Cooperative.........        n/a          n/a            25,319  Jan 20-Apr 1..........     18,989
                                                                               Apr 1-Jun 10..........      6,330
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Jig................................        1.4        3,251               n/a  Jan 1-Apr 30..........      1,950
                                                                               Apr 30-Aug 31.........        650
                                                                               Aug 31-Dec 31.........        650
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ The ICA for the hook-and-line and pot sectors will be deducted from the aggregate portion of Pacific cod TAC
  allocated to the hook-and-line and pot sectors. The Regional Administrator approves an ICA of 500 mt for 2013
  based on anticipated incidental catch in these fisheries.
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


               Table 6--Final 2014 Gear Shares and Seasonal Allowances of the BSAI Pacific Cod TAC
                                          [Amounts are in metric tons]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                 2014 Share                     2014 Seasonal apportionment \2\
                                                  of gear      2014 Share of  ----------------------------------
            Gear sector               Percent      sector      sector total
                                                   total                                Dates            Amount
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total TAC..........................        100      260,880               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
CDQ................................       10.7       27,914               n/a  see Sec.                      n/a
                                                                                679.20(a)(7)(i)(B).
Total hook-and-line/pot gear.......       60.8      141,643               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
Hook-and-line/pot ICA \1\..........        n/a          500               n/a  see Sec.                      n/a
                                                                                679.20(a)(7)(ii)(B).
Hook-and-line/pot sub-total........        n/a      141,143               n/a  n/a...................        n/a
Hook-and-line catcher/processor....       48.7          n/a           113,054  Jan 1-Jun 10..........     57,657
                                                                               Jun 10-Dec 31.........     55,396
Hook-and-line catcher vessel = 60 ft LOA.
                                                                               Jun 10-Dec 31.........        228
Pot catcher/processor..............        1.5          n/a             3,482  Jan 1-Jun 10..........      1,776
                                                                               Sept 1-Dec 31.........      1,706
Pot catcher vessel = 60         8.4          n/a            19,500  Jan 1-Jun 10..........      9,945
 ft LOA.
                                                                               Sept 1-Dec 31.........      9,555
Catcher vessel < 60 ft LOA using             2          n/a             4,643  n/a...................        n/a
 hook-and-line or pot gear.
Trawl catcher vessel...............       22.1       51,485               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........     38,099
                                                                               Apr 1-Jun 10..........      5,663
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........      7,723
AFA trawl catcher/processor........        2.3        5,358               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........      4,019
                                                                               Apr 1-Jun 10..........      1,340

[[Page 13821]]

 
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Amendment 80.......................       13.4       31,217               n/a  Jan 20-Apr 1..........     23,413
                                                                               Apr 1- Jun 10.........      7,804
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Amendment 80 limited access \2\....        n/a          n/a    see footnote 2  Jan 20-Apr 1..........        75%
                                                                               Apr 1- Jun 10.........        25%
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Amendment 80 cooperatives \2\......        n/a          n/a    see footnote 2  Jan 20-Apr 1..........        75%
                                                                               Apr 1-Jun 10..........        25%
                                                                               Jun 10-Nov 1..........          0
Jig................................        1.4        3,262               n/a  Jan 1-Apr 30..........      1,957
                                                                               Apr 30-Aug 31.........        652
                                                                               Aug 31-Dec 31.........        652
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ The ICA for the hook-and-line and pot sectors will be deducted from the aggregate portion of Pacific cod TAC
  allocated to the hook-and-line and pot sectors. The Regional Administrator approves an ICA of 500 mt for 2014
  based on anticipated incidental catch in these fisheries.
\2\ The 2014 allocations for Amendment 80 species between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited
  access sector will not be known until eligible participants apply for participation in the program by November
  1, 2013. NMFS will post 2014 Amendment 80 allocations when they become available in December 2013.
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.

Sablefish Gear Allocation

    Sections 679.20(a)(4)(iii) and (iv) require that sablefish TAC for 
the BS and AI subareas be allocated between trawl and hook-and-line or 
pot gear sectors. Gear allocations of the TAC for the BS subarea are 50 
percent for trawl gear and 50 percent for hook-and-line or pot gear. 
Gear allocations of the TACs for the AI subarea are 25 percent for 
trawl gear and 75 percent for hook-and-line or pot gear. Section 
679.20(b)(1)(ii)(B) requires NMFS to apportion 20 percent of the hook-
and-line and pot gear allocation of sablefish to the CDQ reserve. 
Additionally, Sec.  679.20(b)(1)(ii)(D) requires that 7.5 percent of 
the trawl gear allocation of sablefish from the nonspecified reserves, 
established under Sec.  679.20(b)(1)(i), be assigned to the CDQ 
reserve. The Council recommended that only trawl sablefish TAC be 
established biennially. The harvest specifications for the hook-and-
line gear and pot gear sablefish Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) 
fisheries will be limited to the 2013 fishing year to ensure those 
fisheries are conducted concurrently with the halibut IFQ fishery. 
Concurrent sablefish and halibut IFQ fisheries will reduce the 
potential for discards of halibut and sablefish in those fisheries. The 
sablefish IFQ fisheries will remain closed at the beginning of each 
fishing year until the final harvest specifications for the sablefish 
IFQ fisheries are in effect. Table 7 lists the 2013 and 2014 gear 
allocations of the sablefish TAC and CDQ reserve amounts.

                                     Table 7--Final 2013 and 2014 Gear Shares and CDQ Reserve of BSAI Sablefish TACS
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                     2013 Share of                        2013 CDQ      2014 Share of                        2014 CDQ
         Subarea and gear           Percent of TAC        TAC           2013 ITAC         Reserve            TAC           2014 ITAC         Reserve
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bering Sea
    Trawl \1\....................               50              790              672               59              740              629               56
    Hook-and-line/pot gear \2\...               50              790              632              158              n/a              n/a              n/a
                                  ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Total....................              100            1,580            1,304              217              740              629               56
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Aleutian Islands
    Trawl \1\....................               25              535              455               40              503              428               38
    Hook-and-line/pot gear \2\...               75            1,605            1,284              321              n/a              n/a              n/a
                                  ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Total....................              100            2,140            1,739              361              503              428               38
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Except for the sablefish hook-and-line or pot gear allocation, 15 percent of TAC is apportioned to the reserve. The ITAC is the remainder of the TAC
  after the subtracting these reserves.
\2\ For the portion of the sablefish TAC allocated to vessels using hook-and-line or pot gear, 20 percent of the allocated TAC is reserved for use by
  CDQ participants. The Council recommended that specifications for the hook-and-line gear sablefish IFQ fisheries be limited to one year.
Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


[[Page 13822]]

Allocation of the AI Pacific Ocean Perch, and BSAI Flathead Sole, Rock 
Sole, and Yellowfin Sole TACs

    Sections 679.20(a)(10)(i) and (ii) require that NMFS allocate AI 
Pacific ocean perch, and BSAI flathead sole, rock sole, and yellowfin 
sole TAC between the Amendment 80 sector and BSAI trawl limited access 
sector, after subtracting 10.7 percent for the CDQ reserve and an ICA 
for the BSAI trawl limited access sector and vessels using non-trawl 
gear. The allocation of the ITAC for AI Pacific ocean perch, and BSAI 
flathead sole, rock sole, and yellowfin sole to the Amendment 80 sector 
is established in accordance with Tables 33 and 34 to part 679 and 
Sec.  679.91.
    The 2014 allocations for Amendment 80 species between Amendment 80 
cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited access sector will not be 
known until eligible participants apply for participation in the 
program by November 1, 2013. NMFS will publish 2014 Amendment 80 
allocations when they become available in December 2013. Tables 8 and 9 
list the 2013 and 2014 allocations of the AI Pacific ocean perch, and 
BSAI flathead sole, rock sole, and yellowfin sole TACs.

  Table 8--Final 2013 Community Development Quota (CDQ) Reserves, Incidental Catch Amounts (ICAS), and Amendment 80 Allocations of the Aleutian Islands
                                     Pacific Ocean Perch, and BSAI Flathead Sole, Rock Sole, and Yellowfin Sole TAC
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   Pacific ocean perch                  Flathead sole      Rock sole      Yellowfin sole
                                                   -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Sector                            Eastern          Central          Western
                                                        Aleutian         Aleutian         Aleutian           BSAI             BSAI             BSAI
                                                        District         District         District
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TAC...............................................            9,790            6,980           10,200           22,699           92,380          198,000
CDQ...............................................            1,048              747            1,091            2,429            9,885           21,186
ICA...............................................              200               75               10            5,000           10,000            2,000
BSAI trawl limited access.........................              854              616              182                0                0           34,868
Amendment 80......................................            7,688            5,542            8,917           15,270           72,495          139,946
Alaska Groundfish Cooperative.....................            4,077            2,939            4,728            2,982           20,348           59,403
Alaska Seafood Cooperative........................            3,612            2,604            4,189           12,288           52,147           80,543
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


  Table 9--Final 2013 Community Development Quota (CDQ) Reserves, Incidental Catch Amounts (ICAS), and Amendment 80 Allocations of the Aleutian Islands
                                     Pacific Ocean Perch, and BSAI Flathead Sole, Rock Sole, and Yellowfin Sole TAC
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   Pacific ocean perch                  Flathead sole      Rock sole      Yellowfin sole
                                                   -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Sector                            Eastern          Central          Western
                                                        Aleutian         Aleutian         Aleutian           BSAI             BSAI             BSAI
                                                        District         District         District
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TAC...............................................            9,240            6,590            9,590           22,543           92,000          198,000
CDQ...............................................              989              705            1,026            2,412            9,844           21,186
ICA...............................................              200               75               10            5,000           10,000            2,000
BSAI trawl limited access.........................              805              581              171                0                0           34,868
Amendment 80 \1\..................................            7,246            5,229            8,383           15,131           72,156          139,946
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ The 2014 allocations for Amendment 80 species between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited access sector will not be known until
  eligible participants apply for participation in the program by November 1, 2013. NMFS will publish 2014 Amendment 80 allocations when they become
  available in December 2013.
Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.

Allocation of PSC Limits for Halibut, Salmon, Crab, and Herring

    Section 679.21(e) sets forth the BSAI PSC limits. Pursuant to Sec.  
679.21(e)(1)(iv) and (e)(2), the 2013 and 2014 BSAI halibut mortality 
limits are 3,675 mt for trawl fisheries and 900 mt for the non-trawl 
fisheries. Sections 679.21(e)(3)(i)(A)(2) and 679.21(e)(4)(i)(A) 
allocate 326 mt of the trawl halibut mortality limit and 7.5 percent, 
or 67 mt, of the non-trawl halibut mortality limit as the PSQ reserve 
for use by the groundfish CDQ program.
    Section 679.21(e)(4)(i) authorizes apportioning the non-trawl 
halibut PSC limit into PSC bycatch allowances among six fishery 
categories. Tables 11 and 12 list the fishery bycatch allowances for 
the trawl fisheries, and Table 13 lists the fishery bycatch allowances 
for the non-trawl fisheries.
    Pursuant to section 3.6 of the FMP, the Council recommends, and 
NMFS agrees, that certain specified non-trawl fisheries be exempt from 
the halibut PSC limit. As in past years, after consulting with the 
Council, NMFS exempts pot gear, jig gear, and the sablefish IFQ hook-
and-line gear fishery categories from halibut bycatch restrictions for 
the following reasons: (1) The pot gear fisheries have low halibut 
bycatch mortality; (2) NMFS estimates halibut mortality for the jig 
gear fleet to be negligible because of the small size of the fishery 
and the selectivity of the gear; and (3) the sablefish and halibut IFQ 
fisheries have low halibut bycatch mortality because the IFQ program 
requires legal-size halibut to be retained by vessels using hook-and-
line gear if a halibut IFQ permit holder or a hired master is aboard 
and is holding unused halibut IFQ (subpart D of 50 CFR part 679). In 
2012, total groundfish catch for the pot gear fishery in the BSAI was 
approximately 31,735 mt, with an associated halibut bycatch mortality 
of about 6 mt.
    The 2012 jig gear fishery harvested about 108 mt of groundfish. 
Most vessels in the jig gear fleet are less than

[[Page 13823]]

60 ft (18.3 m) LOA and thus are exempt from observer coverage 
requirements. As a result, observer data are not available on halibut 
bycatch in the jig gear fishery. However, as mentioned above, NMFS 
estimates the jig gear sector will have a negligible amount of halibut 
bycatch mortality because of the selective nature of jig gear and the 
low mortality rate of halibut caught with jig gear and released.
    Section 679.21(f)(2) annually allocates portions of either 47,591 
or 60,000 Chinook salmon PSC among the AFA sectors, depending on past 
catch performance and on whether Chinook salmon bycatch incentive plan 
agreements are formed. If an AFA sector participates in an approved 
Chinook salmon bycatch incentive plan agreement, then NMFS will 
allocate a portion of the 60,000 PSC limit to that sector as specified 
in Sec.  679.21(f)(3)(iii)(A). If no Chinook salmon bycatch incentive 
plan agreement is approved, or if the sector has exceeded its 
performance standard under Sec.  679.21(f)(6), then NMFS will allocate 
a portion of the 47,591 Chinook salmon PSC limit to that sector, as 
specified in Sec.  679.21(f)(3)(iii)(B). In 2013, the Chinook salmon 
PSC limit is 60,000 and the AFA sector Chinook salmon allocations are 
seasonally allocated with 70 percent of the allocation for the A season 
pollock fishery, and 30 percent of the allocation for the B season 
pollock fishery as stated in Sec.  679.21(f)(3)(iii)(A). The basis for 
these PSC limits is described in detail in the final rule implementing 
management measures for Amendment 91 (75 FR 53026, August 30, 2010). 
NMFS publishes the approved Chinook salmon bycatch incentive plan 
agreements, 2013 allocations and reports at: http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/sustainablefisheries/bycatch/default.htm.
    Section 679.21(e)(1)(viii) specifies 700 fish as the 2013 and 2014 
Chinook salmon PSC limit for the AI subarea pollock fishery. Section 
679.21(e)(3)(i)(A)(3)(i), allocates 7.5 percent, or 53 Chinook salmon, 
to the AI subarea PSQ for the CDQ program, and allocates the remaining 
647 Chinook salmon to the non-CDQ fisheries.
    Section 679.21(e)(1)(vii) specifies 42,000 fish as the 2013 and 
2014 non-Chinook salmon PSC limit in the Catcher Vessel Operational 
Area (CVOA). Section 679.21(e)(3)(i)(A)(3)(ii) allocates 10.7 percent, 
or 4,494 non-Chinook salmon in the CVOA as the PSQ for the CDQ program, 
and allocates the remaining 37,506 non-Chinook salmon in the CVOA as 
the PSC limit for the non-CDQ fisheries.
    PSC limits for crab and herring are specified annually based on 
abundance and spawning biomass. Section 679.21(e)(3)(i)(A)(1) allocates 
10.7 percent from each trawl gear PSC limit specified for crab as a PSQ 
reserve for use by the groundfish CDQ program.
    Based on the 2012 survey data, the red king crab mature female 
abundance is estimated at 21.1 million red king crabs, and the 
effective spawning biomass is estimated at 44.2 million lb (20,049 mt). 
Based on the criteria set out at Sec.  679.21(e)(1)(i), the 2013 and 
2014 PSC limit of red king crab in Zone 1 for trawl gear is 97,000 
animals. This limit derives from the mature female abundance of more 
than 8.4 million king crab and the effective spawning biomass estimate 
of less than 55 million lb (24,948 mt).
    Section 679.21(e)(3)(ii)(B)(2) establishes criteria under which 
NMFS must specify an annual red king crab bycatch limit for the Red 
King Crab Savings Subarea (RKCSS). The regulations limit the RKCSS red 
king crab bycatch limit to 25 percent of the red king crab PSC limit, 
based on the need to optimize the groundfish harvest relative to red 
king crab bycatch. In December 2012, the Council recommended that the 
red king crab bycatch limit be equal to 25 percent of the red king crab 
PSC limit within the RKCSS (Table 8b). NMFS concurs with the Council's 
recommendation.
    Based on 2012 survey data, Tanner crab (Chionoecetes bairdi) 
abundance is estimated at 711 million animals. Pursuant to criteria set 
out at Sec.  679.21(e)(1)(ii), the calculated 2013 and 2014 C. bairdi 
crab PSC limit for trawl gear is 980,000 animals in Zone 1 and 
2,970,000 animals in Zone 2. These limits derive from the C. bairdi 
crab abundance estimate being in excess of the 400 million animals for 
both the Zone 1 and Zone 2 allocations.
    Pursuant to Sec.  679.21(e)(1)(iii), the PSC limit for snow crab 
(C. opilio) is based on total abundance as indicated by the NMFS annual 
bottom trawl survey. The C. opilio crab PSC limit is set at 0.1133 
percent of the BS abundance index minus 150,000 crab. Based on the 2012 
survey estimate of 9.401 billion animals, the calculated C. opilio crab 
PSC limit is 10,501,333 animals.
    Pursuant to Sec.  679.21(e)(1)(v), the PSC limit of Pacific herring 
caught while conducting any trawl operation for BSAI groundfish is 1 
percent of the annual eastern BS herring biomass. The best estimate of 
2013 and 2014 herring biomass is 264,802 mt. This amount was derived 
using 2012 survey data and an age-structured biomass projection model 
developed by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Therefore, the 
herring PSC limit for 2013 and 2014 is 2,648 mt for all trawl gear as 
listed in Tables 10 and 11.
    Section 679.21(e)(3)(A) requires PSQ reserves to be subtracted from 
the total trawl PSC limits. The amounts of 2012 PSC limits assigned to 
the Amendment 80 and BSAI trawl limited access sectors are specified in 
Table 35 to part 679. The resulting allocation of PSC limit to CDQ PSQ, 
the Amendment 80 sector, and the BSAI trawl limited access fisheries 
are listed in Table 10. Pursuant to Sec.  679.21(e)(1)(iv) and Sec.  
679.91(d) through (f), crab and halibut trawl PSC limits assigned to 
the Amendment 80 sector are then further allocated to Amendment 80 
cooperatives as PSC cooperative quota as listed in Table 14. PSC 
cooperative quota assigned to Amendment 80 cooperatives is not 
allocated to specific fishery categories. In 2013, there are no vessels 
in the Amendment 80 limited access sector. The 2014 PSC allocations 
between Amendment 80 cooperatives and the Amendment 80 limited access 
sector will not be known until eligible participants apply for 
participation in the program by November 1, 2013. Section 
679.21(e)(3)(i)(B) requires NMFS to apportion each trawl PSC limit not 
assigned to Amendment 80 cooperatives into PSC bycatch allowances for 
seven specified fishery categories.
    Section 679.21(e)(5) authorizes NMFS, after consulting with the 
Council, to establish seasonal apportionments of PSC amounts for the 
BSAI trawl limited access and Amendment 80 limited access sectors in 
order to maximize the ability of the fleet to harvest the available 
groundfish TAC and to minimize bycatch. The factors to be considered 
are: (1) Seasonal distribution of prohibited species; (2) seasonal 
distribution of target groundfish species; (3) PSC bycatch needs on a 
seasonal basis relevant to prohibited species biomass; (4) expected 
variations in bycatch rates throughout the year; (5) expected start of 
fishing effort; and (6) economic effects of seasonal PSC apportionments 
on industry sectors. The Council recommended and NMFS approves the 
seasonal PSC apportionments in Tables 12 and 13 to maximize harvest 
among gear types, fisheries, and seasons while minimizing bycatch of 
PSC based on the above criteria.

[[Page 13824]]



 Table 10--Final 2013 and 2014 Apportionment of Prohibited Species Catch Allowances to Non-Trawl Gear, the CDQ Program, Amendment 80, and the BSAI Trawl
                                                                 Limited Access Sectors
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                           Non-trawl PSC                     Trawl PSC
                                            Total non-       remaining      Total trawl      remaining        CDQ PSQ      Amendment 80     BSAI trawl
        PSC species and area \1\             trawl PSC     after CDQ PSQ        PSC        after CDQ PSQ    reserve \2\     sector \3\    limited access
                                                                \2\                             \2\                                           fishery
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Halibut mortality (mt) BSAI.............             900             832           3,675           3,349             393           2,325             875
Herring (mt) BSAI.......................             n/a             n/a           2,648             n/a             n/a             n/a             n/a
Red king crab (animals) Zone 1..........             n/a             n/a          97,000          86,621          10,379          43,293          26,489
C. opilio (animals) COBLZ...............             n/a             n/a      10,501,333       9,377,690       1,123,643       4,609,135       3,013,990
C. bairdi crab (animals) Zone 1.........             n/a             n/a         980,000         875,140         104,860         368,521         411,228
C. bairdi crab (animals) Zone 2.........             n/a             n/a       2,970,000       2,652,210         317,790         627,778       1,241,500
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Refer to Sec.   679.2 for definitions of zones.
\2\ Section 679.21(e)(3)(i)(A)(2) allocates 326 mt of the trawl halibut mortality limit and Sec.   679.21(e)(4)(i)(A) allocates 7.5 percent, or 67 mt,
  of the non-trawl halibut mortality limit as the PSQ reserve for use by the groundfish CDQ program. The PSQ reserve for crab species is 10.7 percent of
  each crab PSC limit.
\3\ The Amendment 80 program reduced apportionment of the trawl PSC limits by 150 mt for halibut mortality and 20 percent for crab. These reductions are
  not apportioned to other gear types or sectors.
Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


 Table 11--Final 2013 and 2014 Herring and Red King Crab Savings Subarea Prohibited Species Catch Allowances for
                                                All Trawl Sectors
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                         Red king crab (animals)
                      Fishery Categories                           Herring (mt) BSAI              Zone 1
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yellowfin sole................................................                      180                      n/a
Rock sole/flathead sole/other flatfish \1\....................                       30                      n/a
Turbot/arrowtooth/sablefish \2\...............................                       20                      n/a
Rockfish......................................................                       13                      n/a
Pacific cod...................................................                       40                      n/a
Midwater trawl pollock........................................                    2,165                      n/a
Pollock/Atka mackerel/other species 3 4.......................                      200                      n/a
Red king crab savings subarea non-pelagic trawl gear \5\......                      n/a                   24,250
Total trawl PSC...............................................                    2,648                   97,000
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ ``Other flatfish'' for PSC monitoring includes all flatfish species, except for halibut (a prohibited
  species), arrowtooth flounder, flathead sole, Greenland turbot, Kamchatka flounder, rock sole, and yellowfin
  sole.
\2\ ``Arrowtooth flounder'' for PSC monitoring includes Kamchatka flounder.
\3\ Pollock other than pelagic trawl pollock, Atka mackerel, and ``other species'' fishery category.
\4\ ``Other species'' for PSC monitoring includes skates, sculpins, sharks, squids, and octopuses.
\5\ In December 2012 the Council recommended that the red king crab bycatch limit for non-pelagic trawl
  fisheries within the RKCSS be limited to 25 percent of the red king crab PSC allowance (see Sec.
  679.21(e)(3)(ii)(B)(2)).
Note: Species apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


                      Table 12--Final 2013 and 2014 Prohibited Species Bycatch Allowances for the Bsai Trawl Limited Access Sector
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                             Prohibited species and area \1\
                                                               -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              BSAI trawl limited access fisheries                    Halibut                                                  C. bairdi (animals)
                                                                 mortality (mt)     Red king crab       C. opilio    -----------------------------------
                                                                      BSAI        (animals) Zone 1   (animals) COBLZ       Zone 1            Zone 2
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yellowfin sole................................................               167            23,338         2,840,175           346,228         1,185,500
Rock sole/flathead sole/other flatfish \2\....................                 0                 0                 0                 0                 0
Turbot/arrowtooth/sablefish \3\...............................                 0                 0                 0                 0                 0
Rockfish April 15-December 31.................................                 5                 0             4,828                 0             1,000
Pacific cod...................................................               453             2,954           120,705            60,000            50,000
Pollock/Atka mackerel/other species \4\.......................               250               197            48,282             5,000             5,000
                                                               -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total BSAI trawl limited access PSC.......................               875            26,489         3,013,990           411,228        1,241,500
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Refer to Sec.   679.2 for definitions of areas.
\2\ ``Other flatfish'' for PSC monitoring includes all flatfish species, except for halibut (a prohibited species), flathead sole, Greenland turbot,
  rock sole, yellowfin sole, Kamchatka flounder, and arrowtooth flounder.
\3\ Arrowtooth flounder for PSC monitoring includes Kamchatka flounder.
\4\ ``Other species'' for PSC monitoring includes skates, sculpins, sharks, squids, and octopuses.
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.


[[Page 13825]]


 TABLE 13--Final 2013 and 2014 Prohibited Species Bycatch Allowances for
                           Non-Trawl Fisheries
------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Non-trawl fisheries         Catcher/processor    Catcher vessel
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pacific cod-Total.................                760                 15
    January 1-June 10.............                455                 10
    June 10-August 15.............                190                  3
    August 15-December 31.........                115                  2
                                   -------------------------------------
Other non-trawl-Total                                        58
    May 1-December 31                                        58
                                   -------------------------------------
Groundfish pot and jig                                   Exempt
Sablefish hook-and-line                                  Exempt
Total non-trawl PSC                                        833
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Seasonal or sector apportionments may not total precisely due to
  rounding.


        Table 14--Final 2013 Prohibited Species Bycatch Allowance for the BSAI Amendment 80 Cooperatives
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                         Prohibited species and zones \1\
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
           Cooperative                 Halibut                                             C, baurdu (animals)
                                   mortality (mt)     Red king crab       C. opilio    -------------------------
                                        BSAI        (animals) zone 1   (animals COBLZ      Zone 1       Zone 2
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Alaska Seafood Cooperative......             1,609            29,484         2,975,772      259,427      433,149
Alaska Groundfish Cooperative...               716            13,809         1,633,363      109,094     194,629
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Refer to Sec.   679.2 for definitions of zones.
Note: Sector apportionments may not total precisely due to rounding.

Halibut Discard Mortality Rates (DMR)

    To monitor halibut bycatch mortality allowances and apportionments, 
the Regional Administrator uses observed halibut bycatch rates, DMRs, 
and estimates of groundfish catch to project when a fishery's halibut 
bycatch mortality allowance or seasonal apportionment is reached. The 
DMRs are based on the best information available, including information 
contained in the annual SAFE report.
    NMFS approves the halibut DMRs developed and recommended by the 
International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) and the Council for the 
2013 and 2014 BSAI groundfish fisheries for use in monitoring the 2013 
and 2014 halibut bycatch allowances (see Tables 10, 11, 12, 13, and 
14). The IPHC developed these DMRs for the 2013 and 2014 BSAI fisheries 
using the 10-year mean DMRs for those fisheries. The IPHC will analyze 
observer data annually and recommend changes to the DMRs when a fishery 
DMR shows large variation from the mean. A discussion of the DMRs is 
available from the Council (see ADDRESSES). Table 15 lists the 2013 and 
2014 DMRs.

  Table 15--Final 2013 and 2014 Pacific Halibut Discard Mortality Rates
                              for the BSAI
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                        Halibut discard
             Gear                     Fishery           mortality rate
                                                           (percent)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-CDQ hook-and-line........  Greenland turbot.....                  13
                               Other species \1\....                   9
                               Pacific cod..........                   9
                               Rockfish.............                   4
Non-CDQ trawl................  Arrowtooth flounder                    76
                                \2\.
                               Atka mackerel........                  77
                               Flathead sole........                  73
                               Greenland turbot.....                  64
                               Non-pelagic pollock..                  77
                               Pelagic pollock......                  88
                               Other flatfish \3\...                  71
                               Other species \1\....                  71
                               Pacific cod..........                  71
                               Rockfish.............                  79
                               Rock sole............                  85
                               Sablefish............                  75
                               Yellowfin sole.......                  83
Non-CDQ Pot..................  Other species \1\....                   8
                               Pacific cod..........                   8
CDQ trawl....................  Atka mackerel........                  86
                               Greenland turbot.....                  89
                               Flathead sole........                  79
                               Non-pelagic pollock..                  83
                               Pacific cod..........                  90
                               Pelagic pollock......                  90
                               Rockfish.............                  80

[[Page 13826]]

 
                               Rock sole............                  88
                               Yellowfin sole.......                  86
CDQ hook-and-line............  Greenland turbot.....                   4
                               Pacific cod..........                  10
CDQ pot......................  Pacific cod..........                   8
                               Sablefish............                 34
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ ``Other species'' includes skates, sculpins, sharks, squids and
  octopuses.
\2\ Arrowtooth flounder includes Kamchatka flounder.
\3\ ``Other flatfish'' includes all flatfish species, except for halibut
  (a prohibited species), flathead sole, Greenland turbot, rock sole,
  yellowfin sole, Kamchatka flounder, and arrowtooth flounder.

Directed Fishing Closures

    In accordance with Sec.  679.20(d)(1)(i), the Regional 
Administrator may establish a DFA for a species or species group if the 
Regional Administrator determines that any allocation or apportionment 
of a target species has been or will be reached. If the Regional 
Administrator establishes a DFA, and that allowance is or will be 
reached before the end of the fishing year, NMFS will prohibit directed 
fishing for that species or species group in the specified subarea or 
district (see Sec.  697.20(d)(1)(iii)). Similarly, pursuant to Sec.  
679.21(e), if the Regional Administrator determines that a fishery 
category's bycatch allowance of halibut, red king crab, C. bairdi crab, 
or C. opilio crab for a specified area has been reached, the Regional 
Administrator will prohibit directed fishing for each species in that 
category in the specified area.
    Based on historic catch patterns and anticipated fishing activity, 
the Regional Administrator has determined that the groundfish 
allocation amounts in Table 16 will be necessary as incidental catch to 
support other anticipated groundfish fisheries for the 2013 and 2014 
fishing years. Consequently, in accordance with Sec.  679.20(d)(1)(i), 
the Regional Administrator establishes the DFA for the species and 
species groups in Table 10 as zero. Therefore, in accordance with Sec.  
679.20(d)(1)(iii), NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for these 
sectors and species in the specified areas effective at 1200 hrs, 
A.l.t., March 1, 2013, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2014. 
Also, for the BSAI trawl limited access sector, bycatch allowances of 
halibut, red king crab, C. bairdi crab, and C. opilio crab listed in 
Table 10 are insufficient to support directed fisheries. Therefore, in 
accordance with Sec.  679.21(e)(7), NMFS is prohibiting directed 
fishing for these sectors and fishery categories in the specified areas 
effective at 1200 hrs, A.l.t., March 1, 2013, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., 
December 31, 2014.

                              Table 16--2013 and 2014 Directed Fishing Closures \1\
           [Groundfish and halibut amounts are in metric tons. Crab amounts are in number of animals]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                               2013 Incidental   2014 Incidental
               Area                       Sector               Species         catch allowance   catch allowance
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bogoslof District................  All.................  Pollock............               100               100
Aleutian Islands subarea.........  All.................  ICA pollock........             1,600             1,600
                                                         ``Other rockfish''                473               473
                                                          \2\.
Eastern Aleutian District/Bering   Non-amendment 80 and  ICA Atka mackerel..             1,000             1,000
 Sea.                               BSAI trawl limited
                                    access.
Eastern Aleutian District/Bering   All.................  Rougheye rockfish..               169               189
 Sea.
Eastern Aleutian District........  Non-amendment 80 and  ICA Pacific ocean                 200               200
                                    BSAI trawl limited    perch.
                                    access.
Central Aleutian District........  Non-amendment 80 and  ICA Atka mackerel..                75                75
                                    BSAI trawl limited
                                    access.
                                                         ICA Pacific ocean                  75                75
                                                          perch.
Western Aleutian District........  Non-amendment 80 and  ICA Atka mackerel..                40                40
                                    BSAI trawl limited
                                    access.
                                                         ICA Pacific ocean                  10                10
                                                          perch.
Central and Western Aleutian       All.................  Rougheye rockfish..               209               240
 Districts.
Bering Sea subarea...............  All.................  Pacific ocean perch             8,130             7,680
                                                         ``Other rockfish''                400               686
                                                          \2\.
                                                         ICA pollock........            33,669            33,669
Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands..  All.................  Northern rockfish..             3,000             3,000
                                                         Shortraker rockfish               370               370
                                                         Skates.............            24,000            25,000
                                                         Sculpins...........             5,600             5,600
                                                         Sharks.............               100               100
                                                         Squids.............               595               595
                                                         Octopuses..........               500               500
                                   Hook-and-line and     ICA Pacific cod....               500               500
                                    pot gear.
                                   Non-amendment 80....  ICA flathead sole..             5,000             5,000
                                                         ICA rock sole......            10,000            10,000

[[Page 13827]]

 
                                   Non-amendment 80 and  ICA yellowfin sole.             2,000             2,000
                                    BSAI trawl limited
                                    access.
                                   BSAI trawl limited    Rock sole/flathead                  0                 0
                                    access.               sole/other
                                                          flatfish--halibut
                                                          mortality, red
                                                          king crab Zone 1,
                                                          C. opilio COBLZ,
                                                          C. bairdi Zone 1
                                                          and 2.
                                                         Turbot/arrowtooth/                  0                 0
                                                          sablefish--halibut
                                                          mortality, red
                                                          king crab Zone 1,
                                                          C. opilio COBLZ,
                                                          C. bairdi Zone 1
                                                          and 2.
                                                         Rockfish--red king                  0                0
                                                          crab Zone 1.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Maximum retainable amounts may be found in Table 11 to 50 CFR part 679.
\2\ ``Other rockfish'' includes all Sebastes and Sebastolobus species except for Pacific ocean perch, northern
  rockfish, dark rockfish, shortraker rockfish, and rougheye rockfish.

    Closures implemented under the 2012 and 2013 BSAI harvest 
specifications for groundfish (77 FR 10669, February 23, 2012) remain 
effective under authority of these final 2013 and 2014 harvest 
specifications, and are posted at the following Web sites: http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/index/infobulletins/infobulletins.asp?Yr=2013 
and http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/2013/status.htm. While these 
closures are in effect, the maximum retainable amounts at Sec.  
679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a fishing trip. These 
closures to directed fishing are in addition to closures and 
prohibitions found in regulations at 50 CFR part 679.

Listed AFA Catcher/Processor Sideboard Limits

    Pursuant to Sec.  679.64(a), the Regional Administrator is 
responsible for restricting the ability of listed AFA C/Ps to engage in 
directed fishing for groundfish species other than pollock to protect 
participants in other groundfish fisheries from adverse effects 
resulting from the AFA and from fishery cooperatives in the directed 
pollock fishery. These restrictions are set out as ``sideboard'' limits 
on catch. The basis for these sideboard limits is described in detail 
in the final rules implementing the major provisions of the AFA (67 FR 
79692, December 30, 2002) and Amendment 80 (72 FR 52668, September 14, 
2007). Table 17 lists the 2013 and 2014 C/P sideboard limits.
    All harvest of groundfish sideboard species by listed AFA C/Ps, 
whether as targeted catch or incidental catch, will be deducted from 
the sideboard limits in Table 17. However, groundfish sideboard species 
that are delivered to listed AFA C/Ps by CVs will not be deducted from 
the 2013 and 2014 sideboard limits for the listed AFA C/Ps.
    Section 679.64(a)(2) and Tables 40 and 41 of part 679 establish a 
formula for calculating PSC sideboard limits for listed AFA C/Ps. The 
basis for these sideboard limits is described in detail in the final 
rules implementing the major provisions of the AFA (67 FR 79692, 
December 30, 2002) and Amendment 80 (72 FR 52668, September 14, 2007), 
and in the proposed rule (77 FR 72791).
    PSC species listed in Table 18 that are caught by listed AFA C/Ps 
participating in any groundfish fishery other than pollock will accrue 
against the 2013 and 2014 PSC sideboard limits for the listed AFA C/Ps. 
Section 679.21(e)(3)(v) authorizes NMFS to close directed fishing for 
groundfish other than pollock for listed AFA C/Ps once a 2013 or 2014 
PSC sideboard limit listed in Table 18 is reached.
    Crab or halibut PSC caught by listed AFA C/Ps while fishing for 
pollock will accrue against the bycatch allowances annually specified 
for either the midwater pollock or the pollock/Atka mackerel/``other 
species'' fishery categories under regulations at Sec.  
679.21(e)(3)(iv).

                     Table 17--Final 2013 and 2014 Listed BSAI American Fisheries Act Catcher/Processor Groundfish Sideboard Limits
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                             1995-1997
                                                              ---------------------------------------  2013 ITAC                 2014 ITAC
                                                                                           Ratio of    Available   2013 AFA C/   Available   2014 AFA C/
           Target species                   Area/season          Retained                  retained   to trawl C/    P Side-    to trawl C/    P Side-
                                                                  catch     Total catch    catch to      Ps \1\    board limit     Ps \1\    board limit
                                                                                         total catch
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sablefish trawl.....................  BS.....................            8          497        0.016          672           11          629           10
                                      AI.....................            0          145            0          455            0          428            0
Atka mackerel.......................  Central AI A season \2\          n/a          n/a        0.115        3,358          386        3,295          379
                                      Central AI B season \2\          n/a          n/a        0.115        3,358          386        3,295          379
                                      Western AI A season \2\          n/a          n/a          0.2          670          134          670          134
                                      Western AI B season \2\          n/a          n/a          0.2          670          134          670          134
Rock sole...........................  BSAI...................        6,317      169,362        0.037       82,495        3,052       82,156        3,040
Greenland turbot....................  BS.....................          121       17,305        0.007        1,369           10        1,760           12

[[Page 13828]]

 
                                      AI.....................           23        4,987        0.005          383            2          493            2
Arrowtooth flounder.................  BSAI...................           76       33,987        0.002       21,250           43       21,250           43
Kamchatka flounder..................  BSAI...................           76       33,987        0.002        8,500           17        8,500           17
Flathead sole.......................  BSAI...................        1,925       52,755        0.036       20,270          730       20,131          725
Alaska plaice.......................  BSAI...................           14        9,438        0.001       17,000           17       17,000           17
Other flatfish......................  BSAI...................        3,058       52,298        0.058        2,975          173        3,400          197
Pacific ocean perch.................  BS.....................           12        4,879        0.002        8,130           16        7,680           15
                                      Eastern AI.............          125        6,179         0.02        8,742          175        8,251          165
                                      Central AI.............            3        5,698        0.001        6,233            6        5,885            6
                                      Western AI.............           54       13,598        0.004        9,109           36        8,564           34
Northern rockfish...................  BSAI...................           91       13,040        0.007        3,000           21        3,000           21
Shortraker rockfish.................  BSAI...................           50        2,811        0.018          370            7          370            7
Rougheye rockfish...................  EBS/EAI................           50        2,811        0.018          169            3          189            3
                                      CAI/WAI................           50        2,811        0.018          209            4          240            4
Other rockfish......................  BS.....................           18          621        0.029          400           12          686           20
                                      AI.....................           22          806        0.027          473           13          473           13
Skates..............................  BSAI...................          553       68,672        0.008       24,000          192       25,000          200
Sculpins............................  BSAI...................          553       68,672        0.008        5,600           45        5,600           45
Sharks..............................  BSAI...................          553       68,672        0.008          100            1          100            1
Squids..............................  BSAI...................           73        3,328        0.022          595           13          595           13
Octopuses...........................  BSAI...................          553       68,672        0.008          500            4          500            4
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Aleutian Islands Pacific ocean perch, and BSAI Atka mackerel, flathead sole, rock sole, and yellowfin sole are multiplied by the remainder of the
  TAC after the subtraction of the CDQ reserve under Sec.   679.20(b)(1)(ii)(C).
\2\ The seasonal apportionment of Atka mackerel in the open access fishery is 50 percent in the A season and 50 percent in the B season. Listed AFA
  catcher/processors are limited to harvesting no more than zero in the Eastern Aleutian District and Bering Sea subarea, 20 percent of the annual ITAC
  specified for the Western Aleutian District, and 11.5 percent of the annual ITAC specified for the Central Aleutian District.


       Table 18--Final 2013 and 2014 BSAI AFA Listed Catcher/Processor Prohibited Species Sideboard Limits
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                           2013 and 2014 PSC
                                                                          available to trawl     2013 and 2014
              PSC species and area \1\                Ratio of PSC catch     vessels after     catcher/processor
                                                         to total PSC     subtraction of PSQ    sideboard limit
                                                                                  \2\                 \2\
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Halibut mortality BSAI.............................              n/a                     n/a                 286
Red king crab zone 1...............................                0.007              86,621                 606
C. opilio (COBLZ)..................................                0.153           9,377,690           1,434,787
C. bairdi Zone 1...................................                0.14              875,140             122,520
C. bairdi Zone 2...................................                0.05            2,652,210             132,611
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Refer to Sec.   679.2 for definitions of areas.
\2\ Halibut amounts are in metric tons of halibut mortality. Crab amounts are in numbers of animals.

AFA Catcher Vessel Sideboard Limits

    Pursuant to Sec.  679.64(a), the Regional Administrator is 
responsible for restricting the ability of AFA CVs to engage in 
directed fishing for groundfish species other than pollock to protect 
participants in other groundfish fisheries from adverse effects 
resulting from the AFA and from fishery cooperatives in the directed 
pollock fishery. Section 679.64(b) establishes a formula for setting 
AFA CV groundfish and PSC sideboard limits for the BSAI. The basis for 
these sideboard limits is described in detail in the final rules 
implementing the major provisions of the AFA (67 FR 79692, December 30, 
2002) and Amendment 80 (72 FR 52668, September 14, 2007). Tables 19 and 
20 list the 2013 and 2014 AFA CV sideboard limits.
    All catch of groundfish sideboard species made by non-exempt AFA 
CVs, whether as targeted catch or incidental catch, will be deducted 
from the 2013 and 2014 sideboard limits listed in Table 19.

[[Page 13829]]



                          Table 19--Final 2013 and 2014 American Fisheries Act Catcher Vessel BSAI Groundfish Sideboard Limits
                                                              [Amounts are in metric tons]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                          Ratio of 1995-                     2013 AFA                        2014 AFA
                                                                            1997 AFA CV    2013 initial   catcher vessel   2014 initial   catcher vessel
               Species/gear                    Fishery by area/season     catch to 1995-      TAC \1\        sideboard        TAC \1\        sideboard
                                                                             1997 TAC                         limits                          limits
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pacific cod/Jig gear......................  BSAI........................               0             n/a               0             n/a               0
Pacific cod/Hook-and-line CV..............  BSAI Jan 1-Jun 10...........          0.0006             236               0             237               0
                                            BSAI Jun 10-Dec 31..........          0.0006             227               0             228               0
Pacific cod pot gear CV...................  BSAI Jan 1-Jun 10...........          0.0006           9,911               6           9,945               6
                                            BSAI Sept 1-Dec 31..........          0.0006           9,523               6           9,555               6
Pacific cod CV < 60 feet LOA using hook-    BSAI........................          0.0006           4,627               3           4,643               3
 and-line or pot gear.
Pacific cod trawl gear CV.................  BSAI Jan 20-Apr 1...........          0.8609          37,971          32,689          38,099          32,799
                                            BSAI Apr 1-Jun 10...........          0.8609           5,644           4,859           5,663           4,875
                                            BSAI Jun 10-Nov 1...........          0.8609           7,697           6,626           7,723           6,649
Sablefish trawl gear......................  BS..........................          0.0906             672              61             612              55
                                            AI..........................          0.0645             455              29             428              28
Atka mackerel.............................  Eastern AI/BS Jan 1-Jun 10..          0.0032           7,546              24           7,367              24
                                            Eastern AI/BS Jun 10-Nov 1..          0.0032           7,546              24           7,367              24
                                            Central AI Jan 1-Jun 10.....          0.0001           3,358               0           3,295               0
                                            Central AI Jun 10-Nov 1.....          0.0001           3,358               0           3,295               0
                                            Western AI Jan 1-Jun 10.....               0             670               0             670               0
                                            Western AI Jun 10-Nov 1.....               0             670               0             670               0
Rock sole.................................  BSAI........................          0.0341          82,495           2,813          82,156           2,802
Greenland turbot..........................  BS..........................          0.0645           1,369              88           1,760             114
                                            AI..........................          0.0205             383               8             493              10
Arrowtooth flounder.......................  BSAI........................           0.069          21,250           1,466          21,250           1,466
Kamchatka flounder........................  BSAI........................           0.069           8,500             587           8,500             587
Alaska plaice.............................  BSAI........................          0.0441          17,000             750          17,000             750
Other flatfish............................  BSAI........................          0.0441           2,975             131           3,400             150
Flathead sole.............................  BS..........................          0.0505          20,270           1,024          20,131           1,017
Pacific ocean perch.......................  BS..........................             0.1           8,130             813           7,680             768
                                            Eastern AI..................          0.0077           8,742              67           8,251              64
                                            Central AI..................          0.0025           6,233              16           5,885              15
                                            Western AI..................               0             n/a               0             n/a               0
Northern rockfish.........................  BSAI........................          0.0084           3,000              25           3,000              25
Shortraker rockfish.......................  BSAI........................          0.0037             370               1             370               1
Rougheye rockfish.........................  EBS/EAI.....................          0.0037             169               1             189               1
                                            CAI/WAI.....................          0.0037             209               1             240               1
Other rockfish............................  BS..........................          0.0048             400               2             686               3
                                            AI..........................          0.0095             473               4             473               4
Skates....................................  BSAI........................          0.0541          24,000           1,298          25,000           1,353
Sculpins..................................  BSAI........................          0.0541           5,600             303           5,600             303
Sharks....................................  BSAI........................          0.0541             100               5             100               5
Squids....................................  BSAI........................          0.3827             595             228             595             228
Octopuses.................................  BSAI........................          0.0541             500              27             500              27
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Aleutians Islands Pacific ocean perch, and BSAI Atka mackerel, flathead sole, and rock sole are multiplied by the remainder of the TAC of that
  species after the subtraction of the CDQ reserve under Sec.   679.20(b)(1)(ii)(C).

    Halibut and crab PSC limits listed in Table 20 that are caught by 
AFA CVs participating in any groundfish fishery for groundfish other 
than pollock will accrue against the 2013 and 2014 PSC sideboard limits 
for the AFA CVs. Sections 679.21(d)(8) and 679.21(e)(3)(v) authorize 
NMFS to close directed fishing for groundfish other than pollock for 
AFA CVs once a 2013 or 2014 PSC sideboard limit listed in Table 20 is 
reached. The PSC that is caught by AFA CVs while fishing for pollock in 
the BSAI will accrue against the bycatch allowances annually specified 
for either the midwater pollock or the pollock/Atka mackerel/``other 
species'' fishery categories under regulations at Sec.  
679.21(e)(3)(iv).

  Table 20--Final 2013 and 2014 American Fisheries Act Catcher Vessel Prohibited Species Catch Sideboard Limits
                                                for the BSAI \1\
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                  2013 and 2014
                                                               AFA catcher      2013 and 2014      AFA catcher
      PSC species and area \1\           Target fishery        vessel PSC      PSC limit after     vessel PSC
                                          category \2\       sideboard limit   subtraction of    sideboard limit
                                                                  ratio       PSQ reserves \3\         \3\
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Halibut............................  Pacific cod trawl....               n/a               n/a               887

[[Page 13830]]

 
                                     Pacific cod hook-and-               n/a               n/a                 2
                                      line or pot.
                                     Yellowfin sole total.               n/a               n/a               101
                                     Rock sole/flathead                  n/a               n/a               228
                                      sole/other flatfish
                                      \4\.
                                     Greenland turbot/                   n/a               n/a                 0
                                      arrowtooth/sablefish
                                      \5\.
                                     Rockfish.............               n/a               n/a                 2
                                     Pollock/Atka mackerel/              n/a               n/a                 5
                                      other species \6\.
Red king crab Zone 1...............  n/a..................             0.299            86,621            25,900
C. opilio COBLZ....................  n/a..................             0.168         9,377,690         1,575,452
C. bairdi Zone 1...................  n/a..................              0.33           875,140           288,796
C. bairdi Zone 2...................  n/a..................             0.186         2,652,210           493,311
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Refer to Sec.   679.2 for definitions of areas.
\2\ Target fishery categories are defined in regulation at Sec.   679.21(e)(3)(iv).
\3\ Halibut amounts are in metric tons of halibut mortality. Crab amounts are in numbers of animals.
\4\ ``Other flatfish'' for PSC monitoring includes all flatfish species, except for halibut (a prohibited
  species), flathead sole, Greenland turbot, rock sole, yellowfin sole, Kamchatka flounder, and arrowtooth
  flounder.
\5\ Arrowtooth for PSC monitoring includes Kamchatka flounder.
\6\ ``Other species'' for PSC monitoring includes skates, sculpins, sharks, squids, and octopuses.

AFA Catcher/Processor and Catcher Vessel Sideboard Directed Fishing 
Closures

    Based upon historical catch patterns, the Regional Administrator 
has determined that many of the AFA C/P and CV sideboard limits listed 
in Tables 21 and 22 are necessary as incidental catch to support other 
anticipated groundfish fisheries for the 2013 and 2014 fishing years. 
In accordance with Sec.  679.20(d)(1)(iv), the Regional Administrator 
establishes the sideboard limits listed in Tables 21 and 22 as DFAs. 
Because many of these DFAs will be reached before the end of the year, 
the Regional Administrator has determined, in accordance with Sec.  
679.20(d)(1)(iii), that NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing by listed 
AFA C/Ps for the species in the specified areas set out in Table 21, 
and directed fishing by non-exempt AFA CVs for the species in the 
specified areas set out in Table 22.

    Table 21--Final 2013 and 2014 American Fisheries Act Listed Catcher/Processor Sideboard Directed Fishing
                                                  Closures \1\
                                          [Amounts are in metric tons]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                               2013 sideboard    2014 sideboard
             Species                       Area               Gear types            limit             limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sablefish trawl..................  BS..................  trawl..............                11                10
                                   AI..................  trawl..............                 0                 0
Rock sole........................  BSAI................  all................             3,052             3,040
Greenland turbot.................  BS..................  all................                10                12
                                   AI..................  all................                 2                 2
Arrowtooth flounder..............  BSAI................  all................                43                43
Kamchatka flounder...............  BSAI................  all................                17                17
Alaska plaice....................  BSAI................  all................                17                17
Other flatfish \2\...............  BSAI................  all................               173               197
Flathead sole....................  BSAI................  all................               730               725
Pacific ocean perch..............  BS..................  all................                16                15
                                   Eastern AI..........  all................               175               165
                                   Central AI..........  all................                 6                 6
                                   Western AI..........  all................                36                34
Northern rockfish................  BSAI................  all................                21                21
Shortraker rockfish..............  BSAI................  all................                 7                 7
Rougheye rockfish................  EBS/EAI.............  all................                 3                 3
                                   CAI/WAI.............  all................                 4                 4
Other rockfish \3\...............  BS..................  all................                12                20
                                   AI..................  all................                13                13
Skates...........................  BSAI................  all................               192               200
Sculpins.........................  BSAI................  all................                45                45
Sharks...........................  BSAI................  all................                 1                 1
Squids...........................  BSAI................  all................                13                13
Octopuses........................  BSAI................  all................                 4                 4
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Maximum retainable amounts may be found in Table 11 to 50 CFR part 679.
\2\ ``Other flatfish'' includes all flatfish species, except for halibut, Alaska plaice, flathead sole,
  Greenland turbot, rock sole, yellowfin sole, Kamchatka flounder, and arrowtooth flounder.
\3\ ``Other rockfish'' includes all Sebastes and Sebastolobus species except for Pacific ocean perch, northern
  rockfish, dark rockfish, shortraker rockfish, and rougheye rockfish.


[[Page 13831]]


   Table 22--Final 2013 and 2014 American Fisheries Act Catcher Vessel Sideboard Directed Fishing Closures \1\
                                          [Amounts are in metric tons]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                               2013 sideboard    2014 sideboard
             Species                       Area               Gear types            limit             limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pacific cod......................  BSAI................  hook-and-line......                 0                 0
                                   BSAI................  pot................                12                12
                                   BSAI................  CV< 60 feet LOA....                 3                 3
                                   BSAI................  jig................                 0                 0
Sablefish........................  BS..................  trawl..............                61                55
                                   AI..................  trawl..............                29                28
Atka mackerel....................  Eastern AI/BS.......  all................                48                48
                                   Central AI..........  all................                 0                 0
                                   Western AI..........  all................                 0                 0
Greenland turbot.................  BS..................  all................                88               114
                                   AI..................  all................                 8                10
Arrowtooth flounder..............  BSAI................  all................             1,466             1,466
Kamchatka flounder...............  BSAI................  all................               587               587
Alaska plaice....................  BSAI................  all................               750               750
Other flatfish \2\...............  BSAI................  all................               131               150
Flathead sole....................  BSAI................  all................             1,024             1,017
Rock sole........................  BSAI................  all................             2,813             2,802
Pacific ocean perch..............  BS..................  all................               813               768
                                   Eastern AI..........  all................                67                64
                                   Central AI..........  all................                16                15
                                   Western AI..........  all................                 0                 0
Northern rockfish................  BSAI................  all................                25                25
Shortraker rockfish..............  BSAI................  all................                 1                 1
Rougheye rockfish................  BS/EAI..............  all................                 1                 1
                                   CAI/WAI.............  all................                 1                 1
Other rockfish \3\...............  BS..................  all................                 2                 3
                                   AI..................  all................                 4                 4
Skates...........................  BSAI................  All................             1,298             1,353
Sculpins.........................  BSAI................  all................               303               303
Sharks...........................  BSAI................  all................                 5                 5
Squids...........................  BSAI................  all................               228               228
Octopuses........................  BSAI................  all................                27                27
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Maximum retainable amounts may be found in Table 11 to 50 CFR part 679.
\2\ ``Other flatfish'' includes all flatfish species, except for halibut, Alaska plaice, flathead sole,
  Greenland turbot, rock sole, yellowfin sole, Kamchatka flounder, and arrowtooth flounder.
\3\ ``Other rockfish'' includes all Sebastes and Sebastolobus species except for Pacific ocean perch, northern
  rockfish, dark rockfish, shortraker rockfish, and rougheye rockfish.

Response to Comments

    NMFS received 2 letters with five comments.
    Comment 1: Due to concerns that the biomass of the Aleutian Islands 
Pacific cod stock may be declining and that there is a possibility that 
this stock is overfished, NMFS should work with the Council to separate 
the Aleutian Island Pacific cod management from the Bering Sea Pacific 
cod management.
    Response: The Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands 2013 and 2014 OFL and 
ABC for Pacific cod are set based upon recommendations from the Plan 
Team and the SSC. Based upon the best available science, the SSC 
recommended OFL and ABC limits for the BSAI Pacific cod stock and did 
not believe that a separate OFL and ABC was warranted for 2013 and 
2014. Based on the 2012 Pacific cod stock assessment, the 2013 and 2014 
OFL and ABC for BSAI wide Pacific cod stock is not overfished or 
experiencing overfishing. If the SSC does recommend separate Aleutian 
Island Pacific cod OFLs and ABCs, NMFS will work with the Council to 
implement SSC recommendations.
    Comment 2: There should be an exemption in the groundfish harvest 
specifications for small non-commerical vessels.
    Response: The groundfish harvest specifications regulations that 
implement the FMP govern commercial fishing for groundfish in the BSAI 
by vessels of the United States. The groundfish harvest specifications 
are for commercial fishing activities. Non-commercial fishing 
activities are outside of the scope of this action.
    Comment 3: The BSAI groundfish harvest specifications should be 
more concise.
    Response: NMFS agrees that the groundfish harvest specifications 
should be concise to the extent that it is practicable. However, NMFS 
believes that the 2013 and 2014 groundfish harvest specifications are 
concise to the extent practicable.
    Comment 4: NMFS should include harvesting capacity information in 
the BSAI groundfish harvest specifications and elaborate on the effects 
of these harvest specifications upon the fishing capacity.
    Response: The most recent systematic assessment of fishing capacity 
for the BSAI groundfish fishery is Appendix 9 to the 2008 National 
Assessment of Excess Harvesting Capacity in Federally Managed Fisheries 
(http://spo.nmfs.noaa.gov/tm/spo93.pdf), which provides information for 
the year 2004. That assessment found that the catch of all BSAI 
groundfish in 2004 was 2 million mt, and that the fleet had a capacity 
to take 2.9 million mt. Although estimated capacity exceeded catch by 
about 0.9 million mt, about 0.8 million mt of this excess capacity was 
concentrated in one fishery for pollock (pages 333-334). There is 
considerable stability in the BSAI harvest

[[Page 13832]]

specifications from year to year, not least because the total BSAI TAC 
is normally set at the statutory optimum yield limit of 2 million mt 
established by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004, Public Law 
108-199, Title VIII, Sec.  803(c), and identified by the BSAI FMP. 
While individual species TACs vary from year to year, and new directed 
fisheries and the associated TAC may develop over time, fishing 
operators are aware of these variations, and are able to make operating 
plans that take this uncertainty into account. Therefore, NMFS does not 
expect that the 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications have any new 
elements that will limit harvesting capacity below the 2 million mt 
optimum yield limit or encourage overcapacity. NMFS notes that ongoing 
rationalization efforts in this fishery increase the tools available to 
industry to minimize the adverse economic impacts of excess capacity. 
Since the 2004 capacity estimates were made, NMFS implemented the 
Amendment 80 Program in 2008 (72 FR 52668), and the freezer longline 
sector formed a voluntary cooperative in 2010.
    Comment 5: NMFS should move away from a single-species approach in 
setting OFLs and ABCs, and move towards an ecosystem-based management.
    Response: NMFS agrees that there is a need to incorporate more 
ecosystem-based management in setting OFLs and ABCs to the extent that 
information is available. A goal of NMFS is to provide stronger links 
between fishery management and ecosystem research. The Plan Team has 
created ecosystem indicators with the goals of:
    1. Maintaining biodiversity consistent with natural evolutionary 
and ecological processes, including dynamic change and variability.
    2. Maintaining and restoring habitats essential for fish and their 
prey.
    3. Maintaining system sustainability and sustainable yields for 
human consumption and non-extractive uses.
    These indices are maintained in the SAFE report (see ADDRESSES), 
and each stock assessment addresses ecosystem considerations. This 
information is used as a component in setting annual OFLs and ABCs. 
However, NMFS believes the understanding of ecosystem-based management 
is currently insufficient to eliminate the need to set OFLs and ABCs 
using a single species approach.

Classification

    NMFS has determined that these final harvest specifications are 
consistent with the FMP and with the Magnuson-Stevens Act and other 
applicable laws.
    This action is authorized under 50 CFR 679.20 and is exempt from 
review under Executive Orders 12866 and 13563.
    NMFS prepared an EIS that covers this action (see ADDRESSES) and 
made it available to the public on January 12, 2007 (72 FR 1512). On 
February 13, 2007, NMFS issued the Record of Decision (ROD) for the 
EIS. In January 2013, NMFS prepared a Supplemental Information Report 
(SIR) for this action. Copies of the EIS, ROD, and SIR for this action 
are available from NMFS (see ADDRESSES). The EIS analyzes the 
environmental consequences of the groundfish harvest specifications and 
alternative harvest strategies on resources in the action area. The EIS 
found no significant environmental consequences of this action and its 
alternatives. The SIR evaluates the need to prepare a Supplemental EIS 
(SEIS) for the 2013 and 2014 groundfish harvest specifications.
    A SEIS should be prepared if (1) the agency makes substantial 
changes in the proposed action that are relevant to environmental 
concerns; or (2) significant new circumstances or information exist 
relevant to environmental concerns and bearing on the proposed action 
or its impacts (40 CFR 1502.9(c)(1)). After reviewing the information 
contained in the SIR and SAFE reports, the Regional Administrator has 
determined that (1) approval of the 2013 and 2014 harvest 
specifications, which were set according to the preferred harvest 
strategy in the EIS, do not constitute a change in the action; and (2) 
there are no significant new circumstances or information relevant to 
environmental concerns and bearing on the action or its impacts. 
Additionally, the 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications will result in 
environmental impacts within the scope of those analyzed and disclosed 
in the EIS. Therefore, supplemental National Environmental Policy Act 
documentation is not necessary to implement the 2013 and 2014 harvest 
specifications.
    Pursuant to section 604 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 
U.S.C. 601, et seq., a FRFA was prepared for this action. The FRFA 
incorporates the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA), and 
includes a summary of the significant issues raised by public comments 
in response to the IRFA, as well as NMFS' responses to those comments. 
A summary of the analyses completed to support the action is also 
included in the FRFA.
    A copy of the FRFA prepared for this final rule is available from 
NMFS (see ADDRESSES). A description of this action, its purpose, and 
its legal basis are contained at the beginning of the preamble to this 
final rule and are not repeated here.
    NMFS published the proposed rule on December 6, 2012 (77 FR 72791). 
The rule was accompanied by an IRFA, which was summarized in the 
proposed rule. The comment period closed on January 7, 2013. No 
comments were received on the IRFA.
    The entities directly regulated by this action are those that 
receive allocations of groundfish in the EEZ of the BSAI, and in 
parallel fisheries within State of Alaska waters, during the annual 
harvest specifications process. These directly regulated entities 
include the groundfish CVs and C/Ps active in these areas. Direct 
allocations of groundfish are also made to certain organizations, 
including the CDQ groups, AFA C/P and inshore CV sectors, Aleut 
Corporation, and Amendment 80 cooperatives. These entities are, 
therefore, also considered directly regulated.
    According to the Small Business Administration, a small entity 
engaged in fishing activities is one that is not dominant in its field, 
and individually has annual revenues of $4 million or less. In 2011, 
there were 216 individual catcher vessels with total gross revenues 
less than or equal to $4 million. Many of these vessels are members in 
AFA inshore pollock cooperatives. However, vessels that participate in 
these cooperatives are considered to be large entities within the 
meaning of the RFA. After accounting for membership in these 
cooperatives, there are an estimated 112 small CVs remaining in the 
BSAI.
    In 2011, 12 C/Ps grossed less than $4 million. Some of these 
vessels were affiliated through ownership by the same business firm. By 
2011, the vessels in this group were also affiliated through membership 
in two cooperatives (the Amendment 80 ``Best Use'' cooperative, or the 
Freezer Longline Conservation Cooperative (FLCC)). Applying the 2011 
firm and cooperative affiliations to these vessels, NMFS estimates that 
these 12 vessels currently represent six small entities.
    Through the CDQ program, the Council and NMFS allocate a portion of 
the BSAI groundfish TACs, and halibut and crab PSC limits, to 65 
eligible Western Alaska communities. These communities work through six 
non-profit CDQ groups, and are required to use the proceeds from the 
CDQ allocations to start or support activities that will result in 
ongoing, regionally based, commercial fishery or related businesses. 
The CDQ groups receive

[[Page 13833]]

allocations through the harvest specifications process, and are 
directly regulated by this action, but the 65 communities are not 
directly regulated. Because they are nonprofit entities that are 
independently owned and operated, and are not dominant in their field, 
the CDQ groups are considered small entities for RFA purposes.
    The AFA and Amendment 80 fisheries cooperatives are directly 
regulated because they receive allocations of TAC through the harvest 
specifications process. However, the FLCC, a voluntary private 
cooperative that became fully effective in 2010, is not considered to 
be directly regulated. The FLCC manages a catch share program among its 
members, but it does not receive an allocation under the harvest 
specifications. NMFS allocates TAC to the freezer longline sector, and 
the cooperative members voluntarily allocate this TAC among themselves 
via the FLCC. The AFA and Amendment 80 cooperatives are large entities, 
since they are affiliated with firms with joint revenues of more than 
$4 million.
    The Aleut Corporation is an Alaska Native Corporation that receives 
an allocation of pollock in the Aleutian Islands. The Aleut Corporation 
is a holding company and evaluated according to the Small Business 
Administration criteria for Office or Other Holding Companies, at 13 
CFR 121.201, which uses a threshold of $6 million gross annual receipts 
threshold for small entities. The Aleut Corporation revenues exceed 
this threshold, and the Aleut Corporation is considered to be a large 
entity. This determination follows the analysis in the RFA 
certification for BSAI FMP.
    This action does not modify recordkeeping or reporting 
requirements.
    The significant alternatives were those considered as alternative 
harvest strategies when the Council selected its preferred harvest 
strategy in December 2006. These included the following:
     Alternative 1: Set TAC to produce fishing mortality rates, 
F, that are equal to maxFABC, unless the sum of the TAC is constrained 
by the OY established in the FMPs. This is equivalent to setting TAC to 
produce harvest levels equal to the maximum permissible ABC, as 
constrained by OY. The term ``maxFABC'' refers to the maximum 
permissible value of FABC under Amendment 56 to the groundfish FMPs. 
Historically, the TAC has been set at or below the ABC; therefore, this 
alternative represents a likely upper limit for setting the TAC within 
the OY and ABC limits.
     Alternative 3: For species in Tiers 1, 2, and 3, set TAC 
to produce F equal to the most recent 5-year average actual F. For 
species in Tiers 4, 5, and 6, set TAC equal to the most recent 5-year 
average actual catch. For stocks with a high level of scientific 
information, TAC would be set to produce harvest levels equal to the 
most recent 5-year average actual fishing mortality rates. For stocks 
with insufficient scientific information, TAC would be set equal to the 
most recent 5-year average actual catch. This alternative recognizes 
that for some stocks, catches may fall well below ABC, and recent 
average F may provide a better indicator of actual F than FABC does.
     Alternative 4: (1) Set TAC for rockfish species in Tier 3 
at F75%. Set TAC for rockfish species in Tier 5 at F=0.5M. Set 
spatially explicit TAC for shortraker and rougheye rockfish in the 
BSAI. (2) Taking the rockfish TAC as calculated above, reduce all other 
TAC by a proportion that does not vary across species, so that the sum 
of all TAC, including rockfish TAC, is equal to the lower bound of the 
area OY (1,400,000 mt in the BSAI). This alternative sets conservative 
and spatially explicit TAC for rockfish species that are long-lived and 
late to mature, and sets conservative TAC for the other groundfish 
species.
     Alternative 5: Set TAC at zero.
    Alternative 2 is the preferred alternative chosen by the Council:
    Set TAC that fall within the range of ABC recommended through the 
Council harvest specifications process and TACs recommended by the 
Council. Under this scenario, F is set equal to a constant fraction of 
maxFABC. The recommended fractions of maxFABC may vary among species or 
stocks, based on other considerations unique to each. This is the 
method for determining TAC that has been used in the past.
    Alternatives 1, 3, 4, and 5 do not meet the objectives of this 
action, although they have a smaller adverse economic impact on small 
entities than the preferred alternative. The Council rejected these 
alternatives as harvest strategies in 2006, and the Secretary of 
Commerce did so in 2007. Alternative 1 would lead to TAC limits whose 
sum exceeds the fishery OY, which is set out in statute and the FMP. As 
shown in Table 1, the sum of ABCs in 2013 and 2014 would be 2,639,317 
and 2,697,498 million mt, respectively. Both of these are substantially 
in excess of the fishery OY for the BSAI. This result would be 
inconsistent with the objectives of this action, in that it would 
violate the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004, Pub. L. No. 108-
199, Sec. 803(c), and the FMP for the BSAI groundfish fishery, which 
both set a 2,000,000 mt maximum harvest for BSAI groundfish.
    Alternative 3 selects harvest rates based on the most recent 5 
years' worth of harvest rates (for species in Tiers 1 through 3) or for 
the most recent 5 years' worth of harvests (for species in Tiers 4 
through 6). This alternative is also inconsistent with the objectives 
of this action, because it does not take into account the most recent 
biological information for this fishery.
    Alternative 4 would lead to significantly lower harvests of all 
species to reduce TAC from the upper end of the OY range in the BSAI, 
to its lower end. This result would lead to significant reductions in 
harvests of species by small entities. While reductions of this size 
could be associated with offsetting price increases, the size of these 
increases is very uncertain, and NMFS has no confidence that they would 
be sufficient to offset the volume decreases and leave revenues 
unchanged. Thus, this action would have an adverse economic impact on 
small entities, compared to the preferred alternative.
    Alternative 5, which sets all harvests equal to zero, may also 
address conservation issues, but would have a significant adverse 
economic impact on small entities.
    Impacts on marine mammals resulting from fishing activities 
conducted under this rule are discussed in the EIS (see ADDRESSES).
    Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), the Assistant Administrator for 
Fisheries, NOAA, finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in 
effectiveness for this rule, because delaying this rule is contrary to 
the public interest. Plan Team review occurred in November 2012, and 
Council consideration and recommendations occurred in December 2012. 
Accordingly, NMFS review could not begin until after the December 2012 
Council meeting, and after the public had time to comment upon the 
proposed action. If this rule's effectiveness is delayed, fisheries 
that might otherwise remain open under these rules may prematurely 
close based on the lower 2012 and 2013 harvest specifications (77 FR 
10669, February 23, 2012). If implemented immediately, this rule would 
allow these fisheries to continue fishing without worrying about a 
potential closure, because the new TAC limits are higher than the ones 
under which they are currently fishing. Certain fisheries, such as 
those for pollock and Pacific cod are intensive, fast-paced fisheries. 
Other fisheries, such as those for flatfish, rockfish, skates, 
sculpins, sharks, and octopuses,

[[Page 13834]]

are critical as directed fisheries and as incidental catch in other 
fisheries. U.S. fishing vessels have demonstrated the capacity to catch 
the TAC allocations in these fisheries. Any delay in allocating the 
final TAC limits in these fisheries would cause confusion to the 
industry and potential economic harm through unnecessary discards. 
Determining which fisheries may close is impossible because these 
fisheries are affected by several factors that cannot be predicted in 
advance, including fishing effort, weather, movement of fishery stocks, 
and market price. Furthermore, the closure of one fishery has a 
cascading effect on other fisheries by freeing up fishing vessels, 
allowing them to move from closed fisheries to open ones, increasing 
the fishing capacity in those open fisheries and causing them to close 
at an accelerated pace.
    Additionally, in fisheries subject to declining sideboards, 
delaying this rule's effectiveness could allow some vessels to 
inadvertently reach or exceed their new sideboard levels. Because 
sideboards are intended to protect traditional fisheries in other 
sectors, allowing one sector to exceed its new sideboards by delaying 
this rule's effectiveness would effectively reduce the available catch 
for sectors without sideboard limits. Moreover, the new TAC and 
sideboard limits protect the fisheries from being overfished. Thus, the 
delay is contrary to the public interest in protecting traditional 
fisheries and fish stocks.
    If the final harvest specifications are not effective by March 23, 
2013, which is the start of the 2013 Pacific halibut season as 
specified by the IPHC, the hook-and-line sablefish fishery will not 
begin concurrently with the Pacific halibut IFQ season. Delayed 
effectiveness of this action would result in confusion for sablefish 
harvesters and economic harm from unnecessary discard of sablefish that 
are caught along with Pacific halibut, as both hook-and-line sablefish 
and Pacific halibut are managed under the same IFQ program. Immediate 
effectiveness of the final 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications will 
allow the sablefish IFQ fishery to begin concurrently with the Pacific 
halibut IFQ season. Also, the immediate effectiveness of this action is 
required to provide consistent management and conservation of fishery 
resources based on the best available scientific information. This is 
particularly true of those species which have lower 2013 ABC and TAC 
limits than those established in the 2012 and 2013 harvest 
specifications (77 FR 10669, February 23, 2012). Immediate 
effectiveness also would give the fishing industry the earliest 
possible opportunity to plan and conduct its fishing operations with 
respect to new information about TAC limits. Therefore, NMFS finds good 
cause to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness under 5 U.S.C. 
553(d)(3).

Small Entity Compliance Guide

    This final rule is a plain language guide to assist small entities 
in complying with this final rule as required by the Small Business 
Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996. This final rule's primary 
purpose is to announce the final 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications 
and prohibited species bycatch allowances for the groundfish fisheries 
of the BSAI. This action is necessary to establish harvest limits and 
associated management measures for groundfish during the 2013 and 2014 
fishing years and to accomplish the goals and objectives of the FMP. 
This action directly affects all fishermen who participate in the BSAI 
fisheries. The specific amounts of OFL, ABC, TAC, and PSC are provided 
in tables to assist the reader. NMFS will announce closures of directed 
fishing in the Federal Register and information bulletins released by 
the Alaska Region. Affected fishermen should keep themselves informed 
of such closures.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 773 et seq.; 16 U.S.C. 1540(f); 16 U.S.C. 
1801 et seq.; 16 U.S.C. 3631 et seq.; Pub. L. 105-277; Pub. L. 106-
31; Pub. L. 106-554; Pub. L. 108-199; Pub. L. 108-447; Pub. L. 109-
241; Pub. L. 109-479.

    Dated: February 25, 2013.
Alan D. Risenhoover,
Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, performing the functions and 
duties of the Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, 
National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-04822 Filed 2-28-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P