If you have been following the egregious Prohibited Species Catch by Gulf of Alaska trawlers of Chinook salmon then this meeting is for you. Attend by Webinar if you can not attend in person, but most importantly, let the NPFMC hear from you in writing regarding the wholesale destruction of the Chinook salmon resource by GOA trawlers. Trawlers in the GOA take ten times as many Chinook in proportion to pollock as do the trawlers in the Bering Sea, yet there is no cap, no limit, no attempts by management for restraint in the Gulf of Alaska.
NPFMC website: http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/npfmc/default.htm
"Written comments and materials to be included in Council meeting notebooks must be received at the Council office by 5:00 pm (Alaska Time) on TUESDAY November 30, 2010. Written and oral comments should include a statement of the source and date of information provided as well as a brief description of the background and interests of the person(s) submitting the statement. Comments can be sent by mail or fax—please do not submit comments by e-mail." (courtesy of NPFMC)
"The following points may be useful in composing your letter:
• The Council has taken action to control the bycatch of Chinook salmon in the Bering Sea by placing a ‘cap’ on the number of Chinooks allowed to be taken. However, the Council has taken no action in the Gulf of Alaska.
• The rate of Chinook bycatch (salmon per ton of groundfish) is over 10 times that taken in the Bering Sea.
• Subsistence, sport and commercial salmon fishermen bear the conservation responsibility through reduced harvest. Groundfish fisheries have not been required to share that responsibility.
• Chinook stocks in Kodiak’s Karluk River have continued to decline during the years 2001- 2010. The stocks have also failed to meet escapement goals for the last four of those years. Chinook salmon on the Karluk River has been CLOSED to subsistence for the last 3 years and sport fishing for the 2009 and 2010 seasons for conservation reasons. ADF&G has recommended that the Board of Fish declare the Karluk River Chinook as a ‘Stock of concern’.
• For the commercial fishery the BOF prohibits the retention of Chinook salmon over a certain size in the outer Karluk district.
• Chinook bycatch is not particularly well estimated in the Gulf because there is not 100% observer coverage in the groundfish fisheries. Estimates are based on assumptions that observed and unobserved vessels are doing the same thing. There is sufficient reason to question those assumptions.
• Low returns of Chinook salmon to the Karluk, Aiakulik and other systems in the Gulf of Alaska have had a negative economic impact on both the guided sport and charter boat industries." (courtesy of AMCC Action Alert)
Address your letters to:
Mr. Eric Olson, Chair
North Pacific Fisheries Management Council
PO Box 103136
Anchorage, Alaska 99510
NPFMC Agenda: http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/npfmc/Agendas/1210Agenda.pdf
Two agenda items need your attention and comment:
C-5 GOA Chinook Salmon Bycatch (4 hrs)
Review discussion paper.
D-1 Groundfish Management (8 hrs)
(b) Review discussion paper on GOA halibut PSC.
The discussion papers regarding Chinook and halibut PSC should be available on line at the end of this week or so. Stay tuned to the NPFMC website for your copy. As always there is not a lot of time for review and comment. (This helps keep outsiders from participating in the process.)
Keep your flippers wet.