Tag Archives: Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management

Black sea bass surge off R.I.

Scientists tell us that some fish will be winners and others losers as oceans warm. In Rhode Island, count lobster, silver hake and winter flounder among the losers, their numbers plummeting as climate change drives water temperatures higher. On the list of winners so far are squid, summer flounder, butterfish. And black sea bass. The population of the dusky-colored fish with striking blue accents has historically been strongest off the mid-Atlantic Coast, but over the past decade or so its numbers have spiked off New England and it is becoming a more important catch for the region’s fishermen. How they are managed will have important implications not only for those fish but for lobsters and other key species in the ocean ecosystem. >click to read<12:30

RI Delegation Commends Mid on Squid, introduce legislation in House and Senate – The Rhode Island Fishermen’s Fairness Act

After the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) recently voted 16-4 against a proposed squid buffer zone framework off the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts that would have negatively impacted Rhode Island fishermen, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline commended the council. And this week Reed introduced legislation in the U.S. Senate and Langevin introduced identical legislation in U.S. House of Representatives to give Rhode Island a seat at the council table going forward so that the state and local fishermen have a direct say over matters that impact them. The Rhode Island Fishermen’s Fairness Act, which is cosponsored by Whitehouse and Cicilline, would add Rhode Island to the list of seven states with voting representation on the MAFMC, click here to read press release 19:42

Vote against fishing restrictions seen as win for RI, Galilee

At its meeting Tuesday, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council voted 16-4 to discontinue a proposed squid buffer zone framework off the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts, according to Meghan Lapp, fisheries liaison for Seafreeze Ltd “There were a good number of commercial fishermen, squid fishermen present. There were also a good number of people from Nantucket present. Basically everybody that wanted to speak got a chance to speak, and the council did the right thing,” she said. All members of the Narragansett Town Council had signed a letter Dec. 4 requesting the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council “reject further discussion of a buffer zone for the summer squid fishery off Nantucket.” click here to read the story 15:46

Fishermen: Narragansett Bay cleanup might be doing harm

Narragansett Bay is cleaner and clearer than it’s been in decades. But after huge strides in treating wastewater and controlling storm runoff, some are asking a question that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago about what is arguably Rhode Island’s most valuable natural resource: Is the Bay too clean? Fishermen are raising the issue after seeing steep declines in numbers of flounder, lobster and other species that were once so abundant that they formed the bedrock of their industry. It has gotten bad enough that lobsterman Al Eagles says that he and others now call the Bay “Chernobyl,” a reference to the site of the devastating Soviet-era nuclear disaster. click here to read the story 09:20

Waste Water Treatment Plants: Once home to thriving aquaculture, Great Bay is under great strain –  You can see it in the lack of eelgrass beds that used to cover thousands of acres of tidal flats. These new treatment plants have filtered or poisoned most of the nutrients from the Piscataqua River and the many other rivers that serve their municipalities that dump their now super-treated effluent into the tidal water, now so sterile and lacking in nutrients and full of poison that plants and animals cannot survive. click here to read the story

Fin Clipping – R.I. Adopts Laws to Curb Illegal Sale of Striped Bass

Striped BassThe Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) recently enacted new regulations to help prevent the illegal harvest and sale of Atlantic striped bass. The new rules, outlined in Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Regulations, Part XII Striped Bass, require recreational anglers to clip the right pectoral fin of striped bass 34 inches or larger at the time of harvest; fish with a missing right pectoral fin can’t be sold commercially in Rhode Island. DEM said the new regulations, adopted following considerable public input, will help prevent “stockpiling,” which occurs when fish are harvested on a day closed to commercial fishing and then offered for sale on an open day. The new regulations also address fish being illegally transported and sold in neighboring states, according to DEM. Read the rest here 09:00

NOAA releases $705k in Federal Disaster Assistance to RI to help local fishermen

c1a5be0b-8447-4e02-a699-f832bd9b3c2a-large16x9_RIFishingBoatsU.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse together with Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline and Governor Gina M. Raimondo and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) on Saturday announced a new wave of federal funding has been released from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to provide direct assistance to Rhode Island fishermen affected by the 2013 groundfish disaster. The $705,658 allocation will also support a recruitment and training program aimed at enhancing the commercial fishing industry’s workforce. Read the rest here  13:47