Archives for November 2015

First glimpse at 2016 halibut catches this week, BOF meets – fish meetings galore!

Fish Radio

Meetings galore begin this week

December 1, 2015

Fishing areas in Alaska

Fishing areas in Alaska

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – A first glimpse at halibut catches, the Fish Board takes up more than 200 proposals, followed by the NPFMC.  More on meetings that affect your fishing life. That’s up after this —

The Alaska Marine Safety Education Association offers free ergonomics training to seafood processing workers and fishermen to reduce injuries and increase productivity. Visit www.amsea.org  to schedule a training at your plant or vessel.

 Federal grants are available to help “Made in America” companies compete with imports and save US jobs. Learn more at www.nwtaac.org.

 

Recommendations for next year’s halibut catches will be unveiled today and tomorrow during the International Pacific Halibut Commission meetings in Seattle. The sessions are webcast and will include questions and comments.

Five regulation changes for next year are proposed, including lowering the halibut size limit to 30 inches, down from 32 inches. Reports show that would reduce handling by nearly 60 percent, and reduce wastage from more than 1.3 million pounds to about half a million pounds.

Another proposal asks for a maximum size limit of 60 inches for all halibut caught. That aims to protect larger fish, which are the spawners. And another seeks to change coast wide halibut stock modeling to area by area models.

Final decisions on catches and regulation changes will be made by the IPHC in late January when it meets in Juneau.

The state Board of Fisheries is meeting in Anchorage now to review 21 proposals on P-cod in the Alaska Peninsula / Chignik / Aleutian Islands and Bering Sea.

On Wednesday through Dec. 8 the Board  will take up 215 proposals for the Alaska Peninsula, Bristol Bay and Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim regions. Seventy proposals center on Bristol Bay; nine of those ask the Board to allow fishermen to permit stack, or hold several commercial permits at once. The Fish Board meetings also are streamed live on the web.

The Boards of Fish and Game are holding a day-long meeting on Dec. 9 at the Egan Center to get budget saving ideas due to big funding shortfalls.

Finally, the North Pacific Fishery Management Council convenes in Anchorage from Dec. 7 through 15. Next year’s groundfish catches, and bycatch issues dominate the agenda.  All sessions will be live streamed on the web.

You can find links to all of the fish meetings at our website at Fish Links.

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, celebrating 105 years of partnership with Alaska’s coastal communities. www.oceanbeauty.com  In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.

Gov. Walker, B.C. Premier sign MOU for cooperation between countries

November 25, 2015 JUNEAU –            MOU with BC

Governor Bill Walker and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) and Cooperation between Alaska and BC this morning.  

“As our next door neighbor, Canada plays a significant role in many Alaska industries, including trade, transportation, and tourism. This MOU underscores that connection, and I thank British Columbia Premier Clark for her support and cooperation in advancing this important relationship,” said Governor Walker. “As we work to improve our state’s economy, it is important that we actively reach out and foster good relationships with our trading partners and neighbors with whom we share so much in common.”

While the MOU is not a legally binding document, it is a firm commitment by both governments to continue working together where possible. Today’s MOU identifies the broad areas of continued or new activity by Alaska and British Columbia, including:

  • Establishing a bilateral working group on the protection of transboundary waters;
  • Sharing best practices on workforce development and training;
  • Advancing marine transportation reliability and safety;
  • Reinforcing emergency management mutual aid response through the existing Pacific Northwest Emergency Management Arrangement;
  • Fostering continued growth of existing and increased transportation links;
  • Continuing joint visitor industry promotion;
  • And exploring other areas for cooperative action, including natural resource development, fisheries, ocean acidification, border management, trade and investment, and climate change adaptation.

Governor Walker noted that establishment of a bilateral working group on the protection of transboundary waters would not have been possible without the hard work of Lt. Governor Byron Mallott. The Lt. Governor will head up the Alaska side of the working group, while the Minister of Environment and the Minister of Energy and Mines will lead the BC side.

“Establishing this bilateral working group encourages tribes, First Nations, and other stakeholders to join the important conversation around our transboundary waters,” Governor Walker said. “I commend Lt. Governor Mallott for his persistence and dedication to this critical issue. State of Alaska departments have enjoyed frequent exchange and contact with their BC counterparts, and now we can expand on that relationship.”

“We have listened to Alaskans’ concerns about protecting waters in our transboundary rivers, and have already begun conversations in Alaska on a Statement of Cooperation specific to this working group’s future role,” said Lt. Governor Mallott. “Our next steps include sharing our ideas in a draft SOC with British Columbia officials so they can continue the conversation in Canada with their stakeholders.”

The Statement of Cooperation will be an appendix to the MOU signed by the Governor and Premier today.