Tag Archives: jane-lubchenco-grossly-failed-policies
Gov. gets deaf ear from White House on fisheries as Valerie Jarrett, a senior advisor to President Obama Dummies Up!
Valerie Jarrett, a senior advisor to President Obama, has declined to explain why the White House turned a deaf ear to the pleas of Gov. Deval Patrick for relief from what Patrick told her were “impending drastic cuts” in landings allowed the groundfishing fleet concentrated in his state. continued
In her resignation email Lubchenco made the gravity-defying claim that she had made “notable progress” in “ending overfishing, rebuilding depleted stocks, and returning fishing to profitability”; but soon after, John Bullard “In an interview at the Times, Bullard said the telling figure was that the fleet caught only 54 percent of the allowed catch in 2012, and reasoned from that statistic that there is a dearth of inshore cod, a situation that warrants serious action to reverse.” Richard Gaines March 8, 2013 Gloucester Daily Times, “NOAA head explains stock stand”
Peter Shelley of Conservation Law Foundation explains the Cod Dilemma in a wormy little video he so humorously named “For Cod’s Sake”…..continued
NEW BEDFORD — Sharp new cuts in fishing quotas mark the start today of the fourth year of fishing catch shares and sector management in the Northeast, NOAA’s prescription for rebuilding fish stocks and streamlining the fishing industry. But the fishermen who now see their quotas of some fish cut by more than 70 percent, who see their livelihood evaporating before their eyes, who are losing homes to foreclosure, insist, without contradiction, that they have done everything NOAA Fisheries has asked them to do in the past three years, and years before that. sadly, continued
Gloucester fishing community seeks relief from catch limits – Gloucester’s historic industry. Uncertain future
A few weeks ago, second-generation commercial fisherman B.G. Brown almost gave up. He had learned how much fish he can legally catch in the coming year. The numbers were shockingly low. “I was ready to throw in the towel,” Brown told a crowd of about 40 local business people, political leaders, concerned community members, and fellow fishermen that gathered last week to discuss the uncertain future of Gloucester’s historic industry. continued
60 Massachusetts Lawmakers urge Governor Patrick to seek fishing aid from Obama, his personal friend from their Chicago days
A group of more than 60 state lawmakers, including many with districts far from the sea, asked Gov. Deval Patrick Thursday to appeal directly to President Obama, his personal friend from their Chicago days, to grant emergency relief from impending cutbacks in commercial fishery landings widely feared to render the commercial fishing industry “non-viable.”President Obama has kept a stony silence in the face of the growing crisis once he appointed Lubchenco to administer the nation’s oceans and fisheries. And he failed to respond to requests for her dismissal from Reps. Barney Frank, John Tierney, Walter Jones and Sen. Scott Brown. Frank, now retired, and Tierney, whose district includes Gloucester, are Democrats. Jones, who represents the Outer Banks of North Carolina, and Brown, defeated last November by Democrat Elizabeth Warren, are Republicans. continued
Editorial: Division of Marine Fisheries chief Paul Diodati’s stand shows catch shares killing fishery
Noting that he shares the concerns of the relatively few state-permitted, small-boat fishermen, he made it clear that the shortage of fish within those fishermen’s usual grounds is due in large part to the fact that more and more big boats — “unencumbered by trip limits …particularly on Gulf of Maine Cod when they are aggregated for migration, feeding (and) spawning, has significantly contributed to declines in local abundance.” Read more
The human crisis in the groundfishing industry is a real crisis. It is not contrived, it is not looming, it is not a threat, it is here.
Scott Memhard cited the decision by NOAA against allowing the industry a second year of relief via interim catch levels as forcing his hand. The first year of interim limits held the reduction in Gulf of Maine cod to only 22 percent but without the same for the 2013 fishing year beginning May 1, landings will be compressed by 77 percent. And with $1 million in debt coming due, Memhard said he has little choice. Read more
The 2010 catch share commodification of the Northeast groundfishery, hailed by advocates including NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco as a sure path to restoring overfished stocks and profitability for the fleet, has had the opposite effect on Gulf of Maine cod, according to the state’s director of marine fisheries.
The habit of bigger offshore boats to accumulate catch shares in Gulf of Maine cod and capitalize on pulses of the cod with landings far larger than 800 pounds has “significantly contributed to declines in local abundance” of the essential fish for the day boats, state fisheries chief Paul Diodati said in a memo sent Feb. 5 to the Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission and obtained by the Times. Read more here
Recently retired Congressman Barney Frank said Thursday he would “absolutely” be willing to go to the White House as an advisor to and friend of Sen. Elizabeth Warren to seek President Obama’s support for executive orders and congressional appropriations to relieve the Northeast groundfishery disaster.
Frank, a staunch critic of Lubchenco’s policies almost from the start of her NOAA reign, described her in a telephone interview as an intellectually dishonest environmental zealot and enemy of the fishing industry. Read more
Fishermen look to White House – John Bullard, NOAA’s Northeast regional administrator based at Gloucester’s Blackburn Industrial Park, scoffed at that idea.
By default and past experience, what slim hope remains to relieve the declared federal fisheries disaster before it consumes the surviving core of the groundfishing fleet in Gloucester and other New England ports has shifted from leadership at the Commerce Department to the White House. ”I have not heard one word about fisheries from the president,”said Paul “Sasquatch” Cohan, the Gloucester fisherman who announced at the Warren meeting in Gloucester that he had nothing left to fight with. “I wouldn’t give up, but now I have to give up,” said Cohan, who operated a gillnet day boat. Read more
An airing of grievances and an airing of fears rained down on U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren Tuesday in her first meeting with the fishing community since she took office last month. The grievances were those of business people, descendants of the nation’s earliest industry, who in one form of another had made their way harvesting the sea, but now find themselves trapped by government edicts and policy said to be posing as biology, according to Vito Giacalone, the local port’s best known and connected leader. Read more
Russell Sherman stood at the wheel of his boat, the Lady Jane, as light faded and his crew prepared to dock for the night. He made $19,800 fishing last year, he said, and at 64 is afraid he will go into foreclosure. “People are on the hook for money, and they’re not going to be able to pay it off,” said Mr. Sherman, who is a founding member of the Northeast Seafood Coalition, an industry group that supports fishermen and has pushed against deep cuts to the industry. “Desperate situation.” Sadly, Read more here
As lawmakers step up the pressure to secure NOAA funding for the failing monitors’ program, it’s also important that they not lose sight of a far bigger picture as the new Congress takes its early steps forward regarding ocean policy. Read more here
For a gillnet fisherman, these are trying times — with worse yet to come. Captain Don Smith, a 57-year-old transplanted Mainer whose family roots are in Nova Scotia and has fished commercially from Gloucester for more than 30 years, doesn’t need to be prodded to speak to that…… Making life more difficult for the small boats are the big boats; these “trip” boats that traditionally worked offshore on the more distant Georges Bank. But the catch share trading system imposed by federal regulators in 2010 has liberated them to acquire quota from non-participants or day boats, and — no longer limited by daily catch limits —they have been induced to chase the pulses of cod onto Stellwagen, where they flaunt their scale and have their way. Read more here
Yes, NOAA can show “scientific” data suggesting that these dire cuts — up to 77 percent for the Gulf of Maine cod catch – may be necessary. Yet, NOAA also had 2008 survey data that showed many of the cod stocks were already rebuilt. And remember that the latest data is off an assessment model that did not include any input from rank-and-file fishermen, meaning it’s no more credible than the admittedly bogus data used in the “Trawlgate” fiasco of 1999-2000, when NOAA conceded its statistics were hopelessly flawed, yet still used them to set stock limits. Read more
New York Times “I do not deny the costs that are going to be paid by fishermen, families, communities. They are real. They will hurt.” The problem, he said, is not government inflexibility, as fishermen have suggested, but the lack of fish. “It’s midnight and getting darker when it comes to how many cod there are,” he said. “There isn’t enough cod for people to make a decent living.” But opponents said the limits would not help save the industry.
“Right now what we’ve got is a plan that guarantees the fishermen’s extinction and does nothing to ameliorate it,” David Goethel, a New Hampshire-based fisherman and biologist, said as he cast his vote against the plan.
Fishermen were furious with the result.“I’m leaving here in a coffin,” said Carlos Rafael, who owns a commercial fishing business in New Bedford, Mass. “With all these cuts, I won’t be able to keep half of my fleet working. I’ll have to cut down from 20 groundfish boats to maybe 5or 6.” Read more
The New England Fishery Management Council voted Wednesday night to cut the Gulf of Maine cod fishery limits by 77 percent for the 2013 fishing cycle and to extend similar cuts for the 2014 and 2015, dealing a dire blow to the region’s fishing industry. Why this should be so became a sub-theme of the day, with the phrase “regime shift” used frequently to suggest a braid of environmental and ecological alterations —including millions of lobster traps that take an unknown quantity of cod as by-catch, large volumes of herring which eat cod eggs and seals which feed on cod, as well as the various forms of global warming that emanate from and absorb into the seas. Read more
That’s the fact that, while Superstorm Sandy brought unforeseen cleanup costs, the economic disaster recognized by the aptly named Blank and her Commerce and NOAA colleagues wasn’t unforeseen at all. And despite claims to the contrary in her own disaster declaration, it is not merely a case of declining stocks and other natural factors. Read more
Two newly released U.S. House Rules Committee amendments combine to roughly match the Senate appropriation totaling $60 billion for Superstorm Sandy relief, but virtually eliminate the $150 million for fisheries disaster aid aimed at providing relief to the Northeast groundfishery, including fishermen working out of Gloucester. One amendment for $17 billion, filed by Rep. Hal Rogers, a Kentucky Republican and chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, contains no money for the fisheries disasters of Massachusetts, four other New England states and New York, as well as Mississippi’s oyster fishery and Alaska’s Chinook salmon fishery. Read more
The New England Fishery Management Council has voted to recommend giving commercial groundfishermen access to parts of five areas that have been closed to them for many years. The request to open closed areas to commercial fishing came days before the NOAA Science Center issued a report on the 2011 fishing year that contained the revelation that only 41 percent of allocated fish were landed in 2011. Read More
Your View: Fishery council must reject unreliable assessments – By Richard Canastra – southcoasttoday
I nearly always attend New England Fishery Management Council meetings in person, but last month, I was unable to attend the meeting in Newport, and instead listened to the proceedings online. I found that listening, and not physically being there, gives you a different perspective on a meeting. You hear more intently. There are fewer distractions. Examples seem clearer. Patterns emerge. There are some predictable patterns in life. When there is an accident, at the end of the traffic jam you find a police officer. When you go to a restaurant, at the end of dinner the bill comes. And when you attend a fisheries management council meeting that is dealing with a crisis, there is usually a bad stock assessment.
Bad stock assessments have become as predictable as the sunrise. Read More
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As a citizen advocate of the fishing industry, I have no confidence in NOAA stock assessments.
I spend a lot of time reviewing material, attempting to convey the results to as many people possible.
These listening sessions allow, as Mr Canastra stated, patterns to emerge.
The patter of Bill Karp, and Sam Rauch deviates not from the typical bureaucratic structure, much to my disappointment after listening to them from various venues, and reading a lot of information.
The revelations of the Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder Working Group Meeting May 23, 2012, are the foundation of my opinion to condemn the stock assessments as a tool for fishery management, while enforcing Mr Canastras belief that the proper equipment is not being utilized to sample yellow tail flounder abundance.
As stated, patterns have emerged. The pattern of over looking details that have detrimental affects on stock assessments and confidence in them.
At the The New England Fishery Management Council’s three-day meeting in Plymouth Ma on 9/25/2012, a major detail confirmed the retrospective patter of no confidence in stock assessments conducted by NOAA.
During the 54th Stock Assessment Workshop (SAW)/Stock Assessment Review Committee (SARC) Meetings, a fisherman asked a question that received a hollow shrug of the shoulders answer that I find alarming, and telling that these assessments are substandard and incomplete.
The question was, “why is there no mention of herring as a predator species” in the ground fish assessment?
The answer. ” The SSC was, ah, not presented, ah, ah herring as a, ah, predator species….”
Yes. A Retrospective Pattern of the science used to mismanage this industry is established.
The coalition theory was based on an interpretation of the Magnuson-Stevens Act for building a second year of relief — “reducing” rather than “ending” overfishing — while a plan to bring the stock to maximum sustainable yield is crafted.,“I’m not going to opine on whether you can squeeze another year out of (the Magnuson regulations),” Bullard said in a Thursday interview at the Times. “We’re willing to take a look at this at the meeting.” Read More
BOSTON (AP) — The acting U.S. Commerce Secretary on Friday ordered federal regulators to return about $544,000 in unjust fines collected from 14 fishermen or fishing businesses, most of whom worked Northeast waters. New Bedford fishing boat owner Carlos Rafael, who will receive $17,500 back after Blank’s order, said he’s pleased to get anything, given the industry’s ongoing struggles. But he said the bigger victory is accountability for fisheries’ officers. “Even if I didn’t get any money, the world is watching them,” he said. “Before nobody was watching them. … Before they were like the Gestapo. Before you were (automatically) guilty, the party was over.” http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2012-12-14/commerce-secretary-return-544k-in-fish-fines
Filmed aboard several independently owned/operated commercial fishing boats in the Northeast, Salt of the Sea juxtaposes the working fishermen’s perspective on regulations with key players in Federal fishery management. Topics include NOAA’s lost $48 million scandal, inaccurate Cod fish quotas, and overzealous enforcement. http://www.saltofthesea.tv/salt-of-the-sea-trailer.html www.facebook.com/saltofthesea
“This Thanksgiving, I want to give an overdue thanks to the region’s remaining fishermen who brave the elements and bring my family fish and seafood products to eat,” Shelley wrote. “All of us have failed to provide you with a rational, predictable and equitable business environment in which to nourish your hopes of being part of the American dream.“The system has failed you and will continue to fail you as long as it continues to give each of you what you individually demand.”Shelley’s harsh judgment comes as a time when NOAA, led by Jane Lubchenco, is under fire from industry groups and congressional figures from both parties for its policies.
What a phoney bastard. BH
Editorial: What does it take for criminal probe of NOAA actions? It has reached the point at which it must be considered a criminal obstruction of justice.
For Buckson and NOAA in general to spend even a dime on this kind of bogus PR when they and the Commerce Department continue to refuse release of the so-called Swartwood II report – a 550-page follow-up report delving deeper into 66 additional cases of excessive NOAA enforcement — is beyond hypocritical. It has reached the point at which it must be considered a criminal obstruction of justice. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/opinion/x2120604507/Editorial-What-does-it-take-for-criminal-probe-of-NOAA-actions
I’ve identified a webpage at the “Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation” that is evidence of how the NGO’s used the UN and their own puppets at NOAA/NMFS, to push through their catch shares scam.
See how they explain a couple of tools that were designed for this initiative: Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) and Reforming Fisheries Management (RFM). They also mention that they funded the first Step by Step Guide to MSP, published by UNESCO in 2009. I’ve found a copy if this guide, and I hope to be reporting further on it in the near future. The Moore Foundation partnered with the David & Lucile Packard Foundation on this UN guide.
Catch shares are an “important” part of this MSP strategy. Here is the Moore/Packard/UN checklist for reasons that you might be interested in MSP:
Checklist for defining the usefulness of this guide to MSP
FLASHBACK! John Kerry – “Lubchenco is your friend,” February 2010 To leave the Fish Wars as Secretary of Defense?
Kerry released the following statement to the Times yesterday in response to a request about his position on Magnuson. “The status quo isn’t working, and I say that as someone who is passionate about the environment, but who can see plainly that people are hurting and there are legitimate issues that have to be fixed. “I’m going to be talking with fishing and environmental experts at the state and federal level to develop sustainable fisheries in New England and work with the New England delegation, as I always have, to keep federal assistance flowing into Massachusetts for our fishing families and to rebuild the fisheries.” http://www.gloucestertimes.com/local/x966804462/Kerry-to-fishermen-Lubchenco-your-friend
No offense Senator,,,,,,,,,,screw it, Senator Kerry, you thought then, as you do now, that its all about frittering out a few bucks to to the victims of President Obama’s US Commerce Department, the New England Fishing Industry. You have been ineffective Senator, and I’m done beating the drum for you. You have not delivered, Senator.
Please, John Kerry, just go away! http://bostonherald.com/news/columnists/view.bg?articleid=1061174640
Overshadowed by the scale of the pieces in play on the national chess board — trillions in budget cuts, tens if not hundreds of billions in potential tax cuts lost and gained, and unspecified help for Hurricane Sandy’s victims and farm victims of drought — is a unified effort by the New England and New York congressional delegations to place a marker for $100 million for disaster assistance for fishermen and fishing communities.http://www.gloucestertimes.com/topstories/x257827572/Fishing-aid-tied-to-fed-budget-talks
“The fishing industry, in general, is in a very negative mood,” The Controversial Science of Counting Fish
At the meeting in Portsmouth on Friday, scientists detailed the complexities and uncertainties of counting fish that live out of sight. They also took questions from fishing industry advocates frustrated over what they say are shifting and incorrect population estimates that have led to lower catch limits and damaged their businesses http://www.seacoastonline.com/articles/20121112-NEWS-211120323
Election alters fishing’s landscape GDT.- Barney’s Gone. Scott’s Gone. Huge Ramification’s, and they ain’t good.
“Elizabeth Warren will be the champion of the fishing industry,” Ferrante predicted in an interview Wednesday. “She has experience up against Wall Street, big oil, and lost the chance to open the consumer financial protection bureau because of her feuding with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner when Obama refused to submit her name for Senate confirmation.http://www.gloucestertimes.com/local/x1499661062/Election-alters-fishings-landscape
millionaires and billionaires…beep…..millionaires and billionaires…beep…..
The crisis threatening the survival of Gloucester and other East Coast fishing communities — which have declined into officially declared disaster during the last four years — has not registered a blip during the 2012 national election campaign, even as voters go to the polls today. Neither Mitt Romney nor President Obama has paid a whit’s attention to an $331 million industry, though Obama has given silent support to his team at NOAA Fisheries, headed by Jane Lubchenco, over calls for her ouster from several fedral lawmakers. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/topstories/x121541642/Presidential-race-radar-never-hit-fishing-crises
Here are the facts.
Federal fisheries enforcement and the 2012 election – a purposeful cover-up?
Fact: Senator Scott Brown (Republican) and candidate Elizabeth Warren (Democrat) are in a close race for one of the two Massachusetts seats in the United States Senate.
Fact: A majority in the United States Senate, which is now in the hands of the Democratic Party, is considered by many pundits to be “up for grabs” in the rapidly approaching election, and the outcome in Massachusetts will be critical in determining which party controls the Senate – and the United States Congress – starting in 2013.
Fact: Senator Scott Brown has been an ardent supporter of the commercial fishing industry and has been particularly outspoken about an ongoing investigation of corruption at the highest levels of the enforcement branch of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Fact: New Englanders in general and residents of Massachusetts in particular tend to be extremely supportive of their fishing communities and of the fishing heritage that has played such a significant role in shaping the character of their coastline.
Fact: A 514 page report on the follow-up investigation by Special Master Charles Swartwood of NOAA enforcement abuses of fishermen and fishing associated businesses centered in New England and primarily in Massachusetts was completed and delivered to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce in March of 2012.
Fact: In spite of strong bipartisan Congressional prodding to make the report public, prodding in which Senator Scott Brown has assumed a leadership role, (Acting) Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank has refused to do so. To her credit Elizabeth Warren, his opponent, has been seeking the release of the report as well.
Fact: Massachusetts Senator John Kerry’s brother, Cameron Kerry, is general counsel of the Department of Commerce. READ MORE
The Swartwood II Report Justice that is deserved, will continue to be denied until after the election, but why? The investigation has been completed, but not released, in spite of the demands of many elected officials from both parties. There is something about this report that is keeping (Acting) Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank from releasing the514 page report on the follow-up investigation by Special Master Charles Swartwood of NOAA enforcement abuses of fishermen and fishing associated businesses. Swartwood II was completed in March, 2012 and delivered to the Commerce Department. A spokesman for Commerce explained this is “to gather more information regarding issues identified in the second Swartwood report.” I’m curious to understand the need for Commerce to gather “more information” that won’t be added to Swartwood II.http://bore-head007.newsvine.com/_news/2012/10/31/14809392-the-report-that-has-not-been-released-and-wont-be-until-after-the-election-the-free-press
The Obama administration, through its Commerce Department and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has declined to respond to inquiries as to whether it would release before the Nov. 6 election a special investigator’s set of case studies into allegations of abuse and excesses against American fishermen by federal law enforcers still insulated and protected by top Commerce and NOAA officials. Numerous telephone and email questions over the past month to the acting commerce secretary, Rebecca Blank, General Counsel Cameron Kerry, NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco and her chief counsel, Lois Schiffer, have been ignored. Read More.
Why will this administration continue to obstruct justice and not release this report? It is complicit. The Obama Administrations Commerce Department has chosen to involve itself in this perverse abomination.
We are all aware of the gooey details of Administrative Law Judge Joseph Ingolia, pressing Special Master Swartwood to alter his report to cover up details that have shown theUSCG ALJ was involved in a despicable kangaroo court cash grab, all but guaranteeing that Dale Jones’ All Star cast of “Special Agents” and Chuck Juliand would build up a $100 million dollar slush fund, and rifle through half of that on cars planes, and video games, while Andy sold merchandise on E-Bay with his GI phone. Andy should be re scrutinized.
When Lubchenco requested the investigation, she had the chance to fix, but she chose not to.
“The notes and emails to Swartwood coordinating the meeting reflect the active involvement of Cam Kerry, chief counsel for the Commerce Department, and his deputy Geovette Washington, as well as Monica Medina, NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco’s principal deputy. Their initiative was aimed at clearing the reputation of the Coast Guard judges via the secret meeting.”
She chose to manipulate, and her Gulf BP oil dripping hands are all over this. Cover up. Secret meetings. Business as usual. Don’t rock the NOAA boat. Blow it out of the water. It’s beyond time for a full dismantling of this agency and Jane Lubchenco’s firing. As always,
ABOLISH CATCH SHARES NOW!