Category Archives: National

Barry Myers is Trump’s nominee to head NOAA – Why Does This Guy Make Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz Nervous?

Hawaii relies heavily on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — in some ways, for its very safety. NOAA, which oversees the National Weather Service, is the agency that helps predict and anticipate hurricanes, tsunamis and dangerous floods, issuing warnings that help people prepare or get out of the way. But in this case, it’s President Donald Trump’s nominee to run the agency, a business executive from Pennsylvania, who is causing a political storm. Barry Myers, chief executive officer of AccuWeather, a private weather and data services company based in State College, Pennyslvania, has been named by Trump to serve as U.S. Commerce Department Under Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere, a job traditionally held by biologists and climate scientists. This position is usually also called the Administrator of NOAA. click here to read the story 22:44

Vessels Seized – Feds stake claim on 4 of Carlos Rafael’s boats

The government staked its claim to four of Carlos Rafael’s vessels on Wednesday. U.S. Marshals and agents from the Coast Guard Investigative Service boarded the Lady Patricia by Leonard’s Wharf, Olivia & Rafaela and the Southern Crusader II beyond Homer’s Wharf around noon. The fourth vessel, the Bull Dog, was seized at another port. The U.S. Department of Justice said Wednesday the seized vessels will brought to an “undisclosed location.” For more than an hour after arriving, agents allowed anyone with personal property on the vessels to remove it. click here to read the story 08:25

Fortune Fish hopes to haul in e-commerce sales with Lobster Gram

In its first foray into the world of e-commerce, Fortune Fish & Gourmet, one of the largest seafood distributors in the country, acquired Chicago-based Lobster Gram in April. The live lobster is still sourced from Maine — and some frozen lobster tails from Brazil, New Zealand and other locales — but all orders are now packaged at Fortune’s facility near O’Hare International Airport and shipped all over the country.  It was the fourth acquisition in five years for the fast-growing Fortune Fish, which expects to bring in more than $240 million in revenue this year, according to Sean O’Scannlain, president and CEO of parent company Fortune International. “We’ve always thought, What can we do to sell direct to people all over the country via FedEx? click here to read the story  16:06

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 65′ Fiberglass Longliner with Permits, Cummins 855TA, 40 KW Genset

Specifications, information and 35 photo’s click here Swordfish Directed, Shark Directed, Atlantic Tuna Longline permits. Price Reduced.  To see all the boats in this series, Click here12:17

Petty Officer 1st Class Bill Colclough says, Boater beware: Vessel documentation fraud lurks online

A new scam is targeting boat owners looking to save a little time online, but it’s costing them hundreds of dollars: Websites offering documentation renewal services for a fee. These websites lure boaters with the appearance and convenience of an official government website, but, just because a site looks like the Coast Guard and works like the Coast Guard, that does not mean it’s the Coast Guard. Boaters using these websites can end up spending three times the standard fee, and Coast Guard boarding officers will not accept their vessel’s documentation as valid. Why? Story by Petty Officer 1st Class Bill Colclough click here to read the story 09:46

Fish feud: ITQ’s – Will changes to the West Coast salmon industry hurt or help independent fishermen?

The B.C. salmon fishery keeps resisting a market-based management system. Critics accuse the feds of pitting independent fishermen against corporate giants, but what if this new approach gives the little guy some much-needed financial clout?,,, Thorkelson gets furious thinking about how fishing rights and control, thanks to what she considers a concerted effort by the DFO to impose ITQs, have migrated up the food chain to the likes of Canadian Fishing Co. Part of the Jim Pattison Group, Canfisco is a vertically integrated company that owns licences, quota and fishing vessels in most fisheries on the coast, plus processing facilities in B.C. and Alaska that together handle some 20,000 tonnes of salmon annually. click here to read the story 09:03

“The fact is, law abiding, licensed commercial fishermen are considered by our government to be the most dangerous people in America.”

In September 1983 the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Balelo v Baldridge decided the first court challenge against the government policy of placing federal observers on commercial fishing vessels to monitor their operations. The plaintiffs were Pacific tuna purse seiners. This the first observer program in the American fishing industry was enacted under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The first observers spent many weeks on the high seas with the fishermen at a time when there was literally no other way to assure that the newly enacted law — meant to bring the mortality of marine mammals in the tuna fishery as close to zero as possible — was being followed by these operations. It was provided for in this portion of the MMPA that the captains be given notice well in advance of the required observer trips and that the funding be fully covered by Congress. click here to read the story 19:21

A safety training exercise that every fisherman “needs to know”

Bob Scammon lived out the words of the medical training. Michael Oliveira experienced the man overboard training in reality. Scammon, a commercial fishing captain for more than three decades, tried to help a man on board suffering from a heart attack aboard one of his vessels years ago. Oliveira woke up to the news that someone on board the Miss Shauna had fallen overboard in July. In both situations, the crew dealt with death at sea. “All that mayday stuff, that is very, very important how to do it,” Oliveira said. “Everything that we’ve learned today is definitely to our benefit. I do think every fisherman, everybody that’s a seaman, needs to know this stuff.” The Fishing Partnership, a nonprofit organization geared toward improving the health and safety of fishermen, provided a safety training day at UMass Dartmouth SMAST on Friday. click here to read the story 08:31

Scientists urge international agreement on fisheries in Central Arctic Ocean

In an open letter released last week the nine scientists are calling on Canada, Denmark/Greenland, the European Union, Iceland, Japan, Norway, China, South Korea, Russia and the United States “to conclude a successful agreement, demonstrating their commitment to sound stewardship of the Arctic Ocean and peaceful international cooperation.” The letter comes seven months after, representatives of five Arctic nations and five major fishing powers met in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik in March to hammer out a deal on banning unregulated fishing in the international waters of the Central Arctic Ocean. click here to read the story 23:14

NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator calls for erroneous paper to be retracted from Marine Policy

Dear Dr. Smith, In a recent paper published in Marine Policy (Volume 84, Estimates of illegal and unreported seafood imports to Japan), authors Pramod, Pitcher, and Mantha offer estimates of IUU seafood products entering Japanese markets, including Alaska pollock, salmon, and crab from the United States – fisheries that are among the best managed and closely monitored in the world. These estimates are then used as rationale for the creation of a seafood traceability system for Japanese seafood imports.,,, Without significantly more information and transparency regarding data sources and methodologies applied, the paper should be retracted in its entirety. click here to read the press release 15:22

‘Deadliest Catch’: Josh Harris and Casey McManus on the Cornelia Marie’s return in Season 14

Deadliest Catch fans, we have good news: When the Cornelia Marie sets out for king crab season at 12:01 a.m. Saturday morning (“You never leave on a Friday,” Capt. Josh Harris reminds us), there will be cameras on it. The fan-favorite boat was missing from Season 13 of Discovery’s Emmy-winning reality series, even though it remained an active part of the Bering Sea crab fleet last year.,,, The boat itself has also been through a major overhaul. “There’s a lot more buttons up here to push,” Josh says from the state-of-the-art wheelhouse. “I’m really excited to start pushing these buttons on the new machinery, the new electronics we’ve got, and hopefully I learn quick.” click here to read the story here 14:49

Trump nominates AccuWeather CEO to run NOAA

President Trump has chosen Barry Myers, the CEO of the private weather forecaster AccuWeather, to lead the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In that role, Myers, who has served as the chief executive of AccuWeather since 2007, would head the agency charged with executing a broad portfolio of responsibilities ranging from providing severe storm warnings to managing the nation’s fisheries. If confirmed by the Senate, the nomination would install a business executive at an agency more recently headed by scientists. click here to read the story 13:12

Legislative Hearing on Endangered Species Act, Hydropower Bills – Thursday, October 12, 2017 10:00 AM – Watch Live.

H.R. 3144 (Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers), To provide for operations of the Federal Columbia River Power System pursuant to a certain operation plan for a specified period of time, and for other purposes. – H.R. 3916 (Rep. Ken Calvert), To amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to vest in the Secretary of the Interior functions under that Act with respect to species of fish that spawn in fresh or estuarine waters and migrate to ocean waters, and species of fish that spawn in ocean waters and migrate to fresh waters. “Federally Integrated Species Health (FISH) Act” Starts 10:00, click here to read the info 18:59

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 38′ Young Bros. Tuna Boat, 440HP Yanmar 6LY3/STP Diesel

Specifications, information and 9 photos click here To see all the boats in this series, Click here 14:00

Lawmaker Wants Checks on Presidential Power to Set Aside Public Land

A congressional committee will consider a bid to restrict the president’s ability to use the Antiquities Act to set aside vast swaths of public land for conservation purposes. U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop, Utah Republican and vocal opponent of federal control of public lands, introduced House Resolution 3990 on Friday, which would trigger environmental reviews and congressional approvals if a U.S. president uses the Antiquities Act to set aside more than 640 acres less than 50 miles away from another national monument. click here to read the story 12:30

Indigenous fisherman’s boat vanishes after wharf fire in Saulnierville, N.S.

When Alex McDonald arrived at Comeauville wharf in Saulnierville, N.S., Monday afternoon and saw his fishing boat was missing, he said he was “stunned.” The part of the wharf where McDonald’s boat — Buck and Doe —  had been tied up was burned and the seven thick ropes that kept it there were also burned off. “It’s obvious they burnt it off because they couldn’t untie it. Whoever did it, it was well planned, they had to come there with torches to burn that rope off,” said McDonald. “There had to be more than person and then they would have towed the boat out or they would have hotwired it.” click here to read the story 19:00

Many fishermen believe Stokesbury saved the scallop industry

Well, I guess that I had better start writing some of this stuff down, as it seems that my memory is getting fuzzier by the day. Not an uncommon affliction for an old fisherman, who has been put ashore, but who still has enough recall to remember some things that are just too important to allow to fade into obscurity! I had been a scalloper out of New Bedford for 32 years, both as a deckhand, and as a captain of several high-line scalloper vessels. Over all those years there were several trips that stay relatively fresh in my mind’s eye, but one of the most important and fulfilling ones actually occurred after I came ashore. By Jim Kendall click here to read the story 21:55

1600 UPDATE Hurricane Nate – National Hurricane Center Public Advisory

At 400 PM CDT, the center of Hurricane Nate was located near latitude 28.4 North, longitude 89.1 West. Nate is moving toward the north-northwest near 23 mph (37 km/h). A turn toward the
north and a slight decrease in forward speed are expected during the next several hours, followed by a turn toward the north-northeast later tonight.,, Maximum sustained winds are near 90 mph (150 km/h) with higher gusts. Some strengthening is possible before landfall, and Nate could still become a category 2 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale this evening. Rapid weakening is expected after landfall. click here to read the update 16:59

USCG: Remain Upright by Fully Understanding Vessel Stability

The need for operators to understand their vessel’s Stability Instructions (SI) cannot be overstated. It is important to understand the document. Operators and crew should seek out opportunities to further their knowledge of stability via courses, training, workshops, and visits from Naval Architects. They should also take advantage of other various initiatives, both mandatory and voluntary, to discuss and compare a vessel’s current SI to the actual loaded condition prior to departing port. An independent review of a vessel’s loaded condition, equipment, and operations can often provide important insights. click here to read the story 10:21

UPDATED 0800: National Hurricane Center – Hurricane Nate Public Advisory

At 700 AM CDT , the center of Hurricane Nate was located near latitude 25.7 North, longitude 88.0 West. Nate is moving toward the north-northwest near 22 mph (35 km/h), and this general fast
motion is expected to continue through tonight. A turn toward the north is forecast on Sunday morning, followed by a turn toward the north-northeast thereafter. On the forecast track, the center of Nate will move across the central and northern Gulf of Mexico today and will make landfall along the central U.S. Gulf coast tonight. click here to read the forecast07:59

Tropical Storm Nate: Path brings a hurricane to northern Gulf Coast earlier

Tropical Storm Nate got a little stronger and picked up speed on Friday morning on a path that could bring it to the northern Gulf Coast as a Category 1 hurricane in less than 48 hours. The center of the storm moved back over water early Friday after spending most of Thursday over Central America. Nate will move near or over Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula tonight and then enter the Gulf of Mexico late tonight or early Saturday. Nate is forecast to then race across the Gulf and could be nearing the coast of Louisiana by early Sunday morning. click here to read the story 08:25

Canastra Brothers Offering $93 Million for ‘Codfather’s’ Fishing Fleet

One of the owners of the Whaling City Seafood Display Auction in New Bedford is shedding more light on a proposed deal to buy the “codfather’s” fishing fleet. Carlos Rafael has been sentenced to 46 months in prison for his illegal fishing scheme, and cannot be involved in the fishing industry during that time and three years after his release. In an exclusive interview with WBSM’s Phil Paleologos, Richard Canastra confirms he and his brother, Ray, have entered into a memorandum of agreement with Rafael to buy his business, Carlos Seafood, Inc, for $93 million. Video, click here to read the story 16:41

Deal between Rafael, Canastra brothers worth $93M, still needs government OK – While the Canastras and Rafael have agreed, the deal isn’t complete. NOAA and the U.S. Attorney haven’t taken a final position on the proposed sale, according to court documents click here to read the story21:03

Seafood sold in U.S. grocery stores is being processed by North Korean labor

The case for knowing where your food comes from grows ever stronger: A new Associated Press investigation reveals America’s hunger for seafood is unwittingly helping fund the North Korean dictatorship. According to the report, North Korea is outsourcing workers to plants in China that process seafood, including wild-caught salmon, snow crab, and squid, that’s sold in U.S. grocery stores such as Walmart and Aldi — meaning American grocery shoppers “may inadvertently have subsidized the North Korean government as it builds its nuclear weapons program.” click here to read the story 22:31

David Goethel – We have lost the case, but I have no intention of giving up the battle.

I wanted to express my heartfelt thanks to all the private citizens and members of fishing families who have called and emailed me about the recent Supreme Court decision. We have lost the case, but I have no intention of giving up the battle. Many of you have offered suggestions of how to proceed, and I will weigh them all carefully and take further action. In the meantime, I urge all of you, especially those not related to the fisheries, to pick up the phone and call either the Regional Office switchboard (978) 281-9250, or the switchboard at Silver Springs headquarters (301) 427-8000 and voice your displeasure with the current situation. I would also urge you all to contact your Federal Senators in your respective states and voice your frustration. Some members of Congress have tried to fix the problem but because it is regional, they are getting resistance from Senators outside New England. Since many of you come from all regions of the country your calls or emails would be particularly helpful. I wish to again, publicly thank Cause of Action. They have put tremendous time, money and expertise into this case. They are just as frustrated as all of you that no one would rule on the merits of our case. Finally, I want to remind everyone who reads this that citizens hold government accountable in a democracy. Sitting on the sidelines makes everyone assume you do not care. So please, pick up the phone or write that email, and let government know you are dissatisfied with this current outcome. Thank you, David Goethel 17:30

Gone fishin’: Court denies NH caseclick here to read the op-ed

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: TYPE: 42′ OEM Lobster Boat, 750HP John Deere 13.5 Liter Diesel

Specifications, information and 15 photos click here To see all the boats in this series, Click here 12:28

Yes, Trump can revoke national monuments

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has finally completed a months-long review of dozens of controversial national monuments, recommending major changes to 10 monuments, including shrinking six and relaxing regulation of the other four. Before the specific recommendations became public, the president’s opponents were already threatening lawsuits, claiming the president has no authority to change existing monuments. With the recommendations now public, it is only a matter of time before the litigation floodgates open. Everyone should take a deep breath.,,,  Nothing in the Antiquities Act forbids the president from revoking or shrinking a national monument. And the theory is belied by history: Seven presidents have shrunk national monuments, including President William Howard Taft, who reduced the Navajo National Monument by nearly 90 percent. click here to read the op-ed 12:10

Fisherman David Goethel: Justices ruled on technicalities, not merits

The rejection by the Supreme Court is the third defeat suffered by Goethel and co-plaintiff South Dartmouth-based Northeast Fishing Sector XIII since they first sued NOAA Fisheries and other federal officials in December 2015 in U.S. District Court in New Hampshire.,,, “The Supreme Court was our last judicial hope to save the centuries-old New England industry,” Goethel said in a statement. Later, in an interview, Goethel let loose against what he said is the “stacked deck” of standing up to regulators, as well as his frustration with the justice system. click here to read the story 20:56

Dear Lord! Anchorage commercial fisherman killed in Las Vegas massacre

An Anchorage commercial fisherman, 35-year-old Adrian Murfitt, was among the dozens of people killed in the mass shooting Sunday at a Las Vegas music festival. Brian MacKinnon said he was at the concert by country singer Jason Aldean with Murfitt, his best friend, when the shooting started and a bullet hit Murfitt. “We were taking a picture and it went through his neck,” said MacKinnon, who’s also from Anchorage, in a phone interview from Las Vegas. “There’s a lot of amazing people — there was nurses, doctors, firemen. Everybody who was at that concert really jumped on it, did everything they could. We just couldn’t save him. click here to read the story 16:28

“Fish Wars” or a Regime Shift in Ocean Governance? Nils E. Stolpe

The reasons for Big Oil’s (now more accurately Big Energy’s) focus on fisheries – and on demonizing fishing and fishermen – has been fairly obvious since a coalition of fishermen and environmentalists successfully stopped energy exploration on Georges Bank in the early 80s. Using a handful of ocean oriented ENGOs as their agents, the Pew Charitable Trusts and other “charitable” trusts funded a hugely expensive campaign that the domestic fishing industry is still suffering from, but that campaign has paid off handsomely to the entities that participated in or funded it.,,  If anyone wonders why one of the founders of Microsoft might be interested in supporting research by Daniel Pauly, from an article in the NY Times last week,,, and retired admiral and Chairman of the Board of the U.S. Naval Institute James G. Stavridis had a column in the September 14 Washington Post titled The Fishing Wars Are Coming. click here to read the article 14:48

Enviro Groups Demand U.S., Canada Act to Save North Atlantic Right Whales

Conservation and animal-protection groups today sought action by the United States and Canada to prevent painful, deadly entanglements in fishing gear that threaten the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale. In letters to Canadian officials and the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service, the groups demanded action to reduce risks to these imperiled whales. North Atlantic right whales, one of the world’s most endangered mammals with fewer than 500 individual animals remaining on Earth, lost nearly 3 percent of their population this year. click here to read the story 14:00