Category Archives: New England

Maine congressional delegation wants more info before whale rules released

The four members of Maine’s delegation said Wednesday they want information from NOAA about how new findings will be incorporated into the draft rules. NOAA completed a peer review process of the data tool it’s using to create the regulations, and the delegation wants to know what impact that will have on the rules, the members said. >click to read<  14:03

Northern Shrimp: Future not promising for shrimp fishery

The fate of the shrimp fishery for the coming year, if any, will likely be determined Friday afternoon when the Northern Shrimp Section of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission meets to review the 2019 Stock Assessment Update Report and updates from the section’s Summer Survey Work Group and the Northern Shrimp 2019 Summer Survey Results. The meeting will be held by telephone and interested parties may listen to the proceedings by joining in the conference call or by signing in to a “webinar” on the internet. >click to read< 09:29

F/V Darana R Hosts NOAA Fisheries Scientists During Fall Survey

A dozen scientists and staff members from the Northeast Fisheries Science Center visited the 90-foot F/V Darana R in Point Judith, Rhode Island on October 3. The stop was a port call in the midst of the fall NorthEast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program (NEAMAP) survey off the coast of Rhode Island.,, Captain Jimmy Ruhle, son Bobby Ruhle, and crew member Rigo Rodriguez deploy and retrieve all fishing gear, and work with six survey staff from VIMS. The survey collects data including catch, effort, and environmental conditions. Photo’s,  >click to read< 18:50

Vineyard Wind: delayed project reveals bluster in US’s offshore wind ambitions

The recent decision by the Interior Department to hit the pause button on plans to build the first major US offshore windfarm off the Massachusetts coast means the project now hangs in the balance. Amid federal agency infighting, does the country risk squandering a vital resource of clean energy? We investigate. The waiting game: could Vineyard Wind be the new Cape Wind? >click to read< 16:09

Most likely Carnival Cruise Lines is responsible for 18+ Right Whale deaths in the past 3 year, at which rate they would soon be extinct.

Human caused Right whale deaths have suddenly, in sync with a plummeting whale birthrate, put the right whale on the path to extinction.,,, There is the simple answer, to halt the march towards extinction. There is an easy way to prevent those 18 deaths and at least bring that -18 up to 0. We can stop the majority of the anthropogenic Whale deaths with a simple Cruise Ship lane modification between PEI and the tip of the Gaspe Peninsula. Prior to 2007 ships were almost solely responsible for Right whale deaths, but since 2008 fishing line entanglement deaths have increased and fishermen have become the main target. However data from the past 3 years indicate many more ship strike deaths than entanglement deaths. >click to read< 12:41

Jones Act changes would ‘jeopardise countless US jobs’ in offshore wind

US fisheries advocacy body the Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF) has claimed proposed changes to the Jones Act – requiring that cargo, including wind turbines, shipped between US ports be transported on American-flagged vessels – could cost ‘countless of job opportunities’ to local companies in the rapidly emerging Northeast Atlantic offshore wind sector. “These proposed modifications would place foreign-owned offshore wind energy companies at a unique advantage not afforded to the thousands of US-owned maritime industries, including commercial fisheries,” said FSF counsel David Frulla.  “FSF is not submitting this letter to oppose offshore wind energy development in its entirety,, >click to read< 09:21

Rafael’s own fishery complaints opened door to his downfall. Coast Guard report details extensive fishing violations

In January 2015, angered by cuts to his portion of federal groundfish disaster relief, Rafael publicly railed against the process and said he planned to sell his more than 40 vessels and the approximately 60 federal fishing permits attached to them. And with that, five federal law enforcement agencies saw their opening.,,, New Hampshire fisherman David Goethel, in the question-and-answer segment, complained that none of the fish dealers who participated in the scheme — particularly Rafael’s infamous New York dealer — were indicted. >click to read< 06:14

Coast Guard report details extensive fishing violations – “I can’t tell you how angry my fishing community is over this,” Marshfield fisherman Ed Barrett said. Barrett felt NOAA, the New England council and fishermen knew that Rafael was fishing illegally. Rafael had a long history of fishing violations and bragged openly about how he could beat the system, and yet Audyatis said the investigation that eventually caught him didn’t start until 2015. >click to read<

Sinking: Captain Decided Not to Return to Port Despite Forecast

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a Marine Accident Brief about the November, 2018, flooding and sinking of the fishing vessel Aaron & Melissa II approximately 70 miles southeast of Portland, Maine, while transiting to fishing grounds during a storm with gale-force winds. The Aaron & Melissa II sank about 0800 local time on November 14, 2018. All four crewmembers abandoned ship and entered an inflatable liferaft when attempts to dewater the vessel proved unsuccessful; they were later rescued by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter. >click to read< 20:09

Business plan finalists vie for $10K prize, Extreme Gloucester Fishing Commercial Fishing Training Center is in the running!

Small businesses from Salisbury, Gloucester and Peabody are finalists for a $10,000 first prize in this year’s North of Boston Business Plan Competition held by the Enterprise Center at Salem State University. The three finalists are: Covalent Bonds of Salisbury, Extreme Gloucester Fishing of Gloucester, Woven Royal of Peabody, >click to read< 08:15

New Environmental Defence Fund Report Details Actions Needed to Create Climate-Ready Fisheries

“Even with the necessary actions to control emissions and investments to reduce carbon dioxide already in the atmosphere, changes in the ocean already underway will continue and even accelerate,” said Eric Schwaab, senior vice president for EDF Oceans.,,,  The five pathways articulated in the report focus on steps that can and must be taken by governments, NGOs, fisher organizations, academia and multilateral organizations in order to create greater resilience and sustainability of fisheries. The pathways include: >click to read< 06:57

IMORTANT UPDATE: New England Fishery Management Council Meeting in Newport, RI December 3-5, 2019

The New England Fishery Management Council will be meeting at Hotel Viking, 1 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI 02840 . To read the final agenda, revised,  >click here< Register for webinar >click here< to listen live. 09:57 IMPORTANT UPDATE: Due to the winter storm that is impacting the region, the Council will begin the meeting at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, December 3 instead of 9 a.m. as originally scheduled in order to allow for additional travel time. 17:05

Vineyard Haven’s Vital Working Waterfront

Stretching from the Steamship Authority terminal at the north end of Water street in Vineyard Haven, to the R.M. Packer Co. on the far edge of Beach Road, is the only unimpeded, half-mile expanse of year-round working waterfront on the Island. The area is rife with docks, silos, slips and sloops. For some it is ugly. For others, it is barely noticeable. For all, it is vital. >click to read<  08:29

Green Energy: Proposal to import Canadian Hydro into New England faces familiar pushback

Central Maine Power anticipated smooth sailing for a proposal for bringing Canadian hydropower into New England after the so-called “Northern Pass” stalled in New Hampshire. After all, CMP already owned the entire path along existing utility corridors and through remote forests.,, Jon Reed, who’s heading up the Clean Energy Matters campaign, said the goal is to ensure residents understand the environmental and economic benefits for Maine are real. Furthermore, the full financial cost is being borne by Massachusetts ratepayers.,, Maine’s governor, Democrat Janet Mills, remains a supporter of the transmission project after CMP proposed $258 million in incentives, >click to read< 07:08

Isakson’s support for right whale conservation part of broadening bipartisan effort

The Senate bill was sponsored by Sen. Cory Booker, a Democrat from New Jersey and candidate for president. Isakson was one of two original cosponsors – the other is a Democrat from Delaware, Sen. Thomas Carper, according to the legislation. In the U.S. House, a bipartisan group co-sponsored a resolution sponsored by Rep. Seth Moulton, a Democrat from Salem, Mass. Among them was Rep. Buddy Carter, a Republican who serves a district along Georgia’s coast. >click to read< 16:09

New England’s drive for Canadian hydropower threatens native population’s way of life

Amid the last 20 years of worsening impacts from climate change, environmentalists in the Twin States have scrambled to push state leadership toward ambitious renewable energy goals. And a key component of meeting those goals has been Canadian hydropower, a cost-effective, reliable resource that is often billed as clean, green energy. The New England ISO, which regulates New England’s electricity infrastructure, currently gets 1.4 terawatt hours of electricity from damming projects from the provinces of Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador, some of which goes to New Hampshire. About a third of Vermont’s energy comes from Canadian hydro plants through the Highgate interconnection. >click to read< 09:01

Offshore wind farm proposals causing concerns for fishing industry

Sen. Susan Sosnowski (D – Dist. 37, South Kingstown, New Shoreham) was pleased to hear about the changes made to two offshore wind farm proposal last week, calling the revisions “positive development.” The developers of this project, Mayflower Wind and Vineyard Winds, are hoping to place an 84-turbine array off Martha’s Vineyard and another 15 turbines in the Rhode Island Sound. According to Sosnowski, she still has some remaining concerns. Same here, Senator! Where are the cease and desist orders? >click to read< 11:04

Coast Guard Report: Catch misreported on 350 fishing trips by Northeast multispecies groundfishery vessels

In its 21-page report, the Coast Guard said the analysis by its Boston-based First District enforcement staff identified more than 350 vessel trips during the period of 2011 to 2015 in the Northeast multispecies groundfishery “where there appears to be evidence of misreporting.” The analysis placed a particular focus on potential misreporting by vessels fishing in seasonal fisheries or fishing the same stock in more than one stock area. The goal of the misreporting, according to the report, is to keep fishing without exceeding catch limits and annual catch entitlements. >click to read< 07:10

U.S.-China trade war is a boon for Atlantic Canada’s lobster harvesters. But what’s the catch?

Exports of Canadian lobster rose to a record $266-million from $112-million in the 18 months between January, 2018, and June, 2019. Meanwhile, U.S. exports have plummeted, especially in Maine, where live lobster exports to China collapsed by 81 per cent between June, 2018, and the same month this year. It’s all pumping millions of dollars into Atlantic Canada, fuelling a boat-building boom, sending pickup-truck sales soaring and giving lobster crews six-figure salaries, a significant raise from the recent past. >click to read< 10:17

This entrepreneur uses her kelp farm to help women in recovery

Three women join Francke and her husband, Brent Nappi, aboard the Linda Kate. They show up in jeans and sweatpants but change into oversized Grundéns overalls and boots. All hands are clad in bulky orange fishing gloves, and all eyes are on Francke. These women are all in recovery, and they are working together on a boat for the first time today. >click to read< 08:42

Video: Maine lobstermen look to Asian Carp as potential solution for bait crisis

“My bait bill today was ridiculously high, I think. But there’s people that spend more,” said Lobsterman Steve Train. The rising costs are credited to increased demand, but also new regulations that limit the catch for one of the most popular fish for lobstering – herring. “The reality is it’s not the just the price, it’s the availability. Without the herring coming on to put in the bait bags to catch lobsters… we’re going to have a bait shortage,” said Train. The state estimates a nearly a 50,000,000 pound herring gap in the next year. >Video, click to read< 11:19

Posing as a Commercial Fisherman, Agent used lobster to butter up fentanyl dealer

Prosecutors said a Stoughton man sold fentanyl on several occasions to an undercover DEA agent who was posing as a commercial fisherman, offering lobsters to the alleged drug dealer in a sign of goodwill. Matthew Pizarro, 30, pleaded guilty in federal court in Boston Nov. 26,,, According to an affidavit filed by a VA investigator, the investigation involved an undercover DEA agent posing as a commercial fisherman who wanted to buy drugs. During on exchange on July 30, 2018, according to the affidavit, the undercover agent gave Pizarro a cooler of lobsters as a gift. Thank you! >click to read< 10:32

Science Advances report says marine protected areas may not be enough to preserve biodiversity

The paper published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances said climate change will erode the effectiveness of “static” marine protected areas across the globe, and “dynamic ocean management” is needed to preserve biodiversity when species or ecosystems move because of a changing ocean. When the critically endangered whales appeared unexpectedly in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2017, the results were disastrous. Twelve right whales whales died and Canada implemented speed limits in shipping lanes and temporary fishing-zone closures. Nine more died this year. >click to read< 09:05

Scientists review divisive whale risk reduction model

A panel of scientists gathered in Woods Hole, Mass., last week to evaluate a controversial “decision support tool” used by NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service to design proposed rules aimed at protecting endangered North Atlantic right whales and other large marine mammals from entanglement with fishing gear. Last spring, the NOAA Fisheries Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team (TRT) recommended that the fisheries service adopt new rules that would, among other requirements, force Maine lobstermen to remove from the water 50 percent of the vertical lines used to connect traps on the bottom to marker buoys on the surface. >click to read< 11:07

This tragedy was unimaginable for us, like it is for all fishing families’ — Alisha Marques, sister of lost New Bedford fisherman Mark P. Cormier Jr.

Coping with a tragedy “unimaginable for us, like it is for all fishing families,” Alisha Marques, the sister of Mark P. Cormier Jr., has started a GoFundMe page in honor of her brother and “lost fishermen.” Cormier, 35, is one of three crew members lost at sea Sunday after the New Bedford-based scalloper F/V Leonardo went down in churning waters off Martha’s Vineyard. >Click to read< Please >click here to donate< in the memory of Mark Cormier. 06:36

Letter: We need to find new markets for lobsters

To the editor, At one time I sold thousands of pounds of live lobsters. I shipped not only in the states but also abroad. Twenty years ago we had an advantage here on the East Coast. The Canadians did not allow lobstering in the summer months and would open their season in November. Back then our local boats would call it quits because the lobsters here would go in deeper waters because the water inshore was too cold. So the Canadians would benefit since our lobsterman would wait to spring to trap again. Sam Parisi >click to read< 06:11

Video: Lone fisherman who survived shipwreck off Martha’s Vineyard recalls harrowing ordeal

Ernesto Garcia, 50, was aboard the F/V Leonardo — a 56-foot scallop boat — that capsized and sank on Sunday afternoon as nine-foot swells and gusty winds battered the area. He was later rescued by a helicopter crew. “We caught a rogue sea,” Garcia told 7’s Jonathan Hall. “A wave came across in the opposite direction in which the waves were running.” Video, >click to watch<  20:56

All posts under F/V Leonardo, >click to read< 21:52

Joe Gilbert: Wind turbine spacing plan inadequate for fishing safety

From the perspective of Connecticut’s commercial fishermen who provide over $53 million to our state’s economy, nearly 1,000 jobs and food on the table of countless consumers, I wanted to respond to the Nov. 19 Day article, “New England Wind Turbine Plan Proposed to Allay Concerns.,,, “This uniform layout is consistent with the requests of the region’s fisheries industry and other maritime users,”,,, It is unclear to me and other fishermen what industry requests these developers are responding to. >click to read< 11:10

Fishermen’s Alliance: Long-Waged Battle for Herring Won

The formal announcement from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reflected what much of the Cape wanted, a 12-nautical mile territorial sea boundary from the Canadian border to Connecticut and a 20-mile buffer off the peninsula’s backshore as well as catch limits based on the needs of the ecosystem. Supporters believe the buffer that keeps industrial-sized midwater trawl vessels from taking enormous amounts of herring out of local waters will go a long way towards rebuilding the entire inshore ecosystem and therefore boost the maritime economy. >click to read< 10:10

Coast Guard suspends search for 3 missing New Bedford fishermen

The search for the three missing men was suspended Monday evening, according to officials. Earlier Monday, the owner of a scalloping vessel that capsized and sank in choppy seas southwest of Martha’s Vineyard on Sunday afternoon said the single fisherman found in a lifeboat a few hours after a distress signal is in the hospital. More information, >click to read<  06:47

Owner of New Bedford vessel capsized off Martha’s Vineyard fears 3 crew members perished

Coast Guard crews from Air Station Cape Cod were continuing the search for the three missing fishermen Monday,,, Luis Martins, who owns a fish processing plant called Joe’s Fresh Seafood in New Bedford, said he has owned the 56-foot commercial fishing vessel for about five years. The boat was built in 1967, and Martins said it had been updated. The U.S. Coast Guard has released footage of the rescue of the lone fisherman from the F/V Leonardo. Video, >click to read< 16:07  all F/V Leonardo posts >click here<