Tag Archives: Fisheries Survival Fund

Fisheries Survival Fund: Change Offshore Wind Farm Areas to Protect Scallops

The Fisheries Survival Fund , is requesting that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, which is responsible for leasing areas for offshore development, incrementally change its lease plans for the New York Bight. Currently, two BOEM Wind Energy Areas, Hudson South and Central Bight, are located in particularly sensitive areas for scallops. In their current form, these areas, including hundreds of thousands of acres of ocean, will have a serious negative impact on the fishery. BOEM’s proposed eastern-most lease areas in Hudson South are directly adjacent to the Hudson Canyon Scallop Access Area, one of the most important scallop grounds in the Northeast. >click to read< 19:06

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

This Blows! Fishing industry raps proposed wind energy grid

“The proposed layout specifies that turbines will be spaced 1 nautical mile (nm) apart, arranged in east-west rows and north-south columns, with the rows and columns continuous across all New England lease areas.” But the claim that the newly proposed layout would satisfy the requests of the fishing industry did not entirely hold up once the developers’ plan was released publicly Tuesday morning. An organization that advocates on behalf of the scallop industry said its members were not consulted,,, >click to read< 19:41

Federal Fishing Expansion Could Endanger Right Whales

Trump regulators opened about 3,100 square miles of ocean to fishing for scallops and fish that live near the bottom of the ocean such as halibut and flounder that had been closed for more than two decades, including a section of Georges Bank off Cape Cod, Mass., and part of the ocean near southern New England.,, A scallop fishing industry group, Fisheries Survival Fund, said no scallop vessel has ever had an interaction with a right whale. >click to read< 11:29

Fishermen face uphill battle in lawsuit over New York wind site

Fishermen and the city of New Bedford are facing an uphill battle in their fight against a New York offshore wind location after losing a lawsuit in September. Attorney David Frulla, who represents the Fisheries Survival Fund and other plaintiffs in the case, said he was disappointed at the court decision but has not given up. “I just don’t think the judge understood that these leases aren’t theoretical, that they actually confer rights,” he said. >click to read< 09:46

Fisheries Survival Fund: HabCam Failure Threatens 2019 Atlantic Sea Scallop Survey

The loss, recovery, and now electrical failure of the NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center “HabCam” habitat mapping camera means that the all-important 2019 Northeast sea scallop survey now continues as a dredge-only survey. The federal survey will thus conclude on June 15 without crucial sampling instruments, including cameras that photograph the ocean bottom. The HabCam, towed just above the ocean floor, provides a non-invasive, extensive, optically-based survey of the Atlantic scallop resource and ocean floor. NOAA Fisheries is working to make the HabCam a centerpiece research and survey tool. >click to read<09:51

New Video Shows Impacts of Offshore Wind On U.K. Fishermen

A new video, Winds of Change, released today by the Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), documents how the arrival of offshore wind blindsided U.K. fishermen, and how the wind farms have permanently changed their traditional fishing grounds and how they make their livelihoods. Last year, two members of FSF traveled to the United Kingdom to learn how fishermen in Ramsgate, England and Aberdeen, Scotland have been impacted by offshore wind development. Those lessons are documented in Winds of Change. “As offshore wind moves forward here in the U.S., it’s essential that it’s able to co-exist with the fishing communities that have depended on these waters for generations,” said Andrew Minkiewicz, an attorney for FSF. “We must learn from the experiences of European fishermen if we want to avoid the same pitfalls and make the best decisions for American fishermen and offshore wind developers.” >click to read<19:14

Winds of Change – >click to watch<

Court rejects fishermen’s challenge to Equinor’s Empire Wind

A D.C. district court rejected an attempt by commercial fishing groups to block a wind project off the coast of New York on Sunday, siding with developer Equinor ASA and the Interior Department. The Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), which represents scallop fishermen who work off the Atlantic coast, claimed that the Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) had violated two federal laws when it awarded Equinor, formerly Statoil, the $42 million rights to assess potential for wind turbines in a 127-square-mile block in 2016.,, The agency issued the lease without considering the interests of fishermen within that area, said the FSF, joined by several local seafood and fishing associations and three towns in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Jersey. >click to read<11:40

How fishermen could thwart Cuomo’s offshore wind master plan

In the mist off New England’s coast, towering alien monoliths pierce the surging waters, soaring 600 to 850 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. Hundreds of these titans, rising up to 200 feet taller than Trump Tower, chop the air with massive blades that are taller than Albany’s Capitol building. Offshore wind turbines like these, Gov. Andrew Cuomo says, are a critical part of his clean energy mandate to generate 50 percent of the state’s electricity from renewable energy. But those humble fishermen are threatening to derail the governor’s goals with a federal lawsuit they believe is their last best shot to save their livelihoods. >click to read<21:41

Cape fishermen push for action on habitat protection

Part of managing fisheries is identifying and protecting that habitat. But the ocean is a big place and a difficult environment to do analysis. Politically, it’s also fractious terrain as fishermen worry about the balance between conservation and being shut out of traditional and productive fishing grounds. And so, it took 14 years for the New England Fishery Management to craft regulations protecting fish habitat, passing Omnibus Habitat Amendment 2 in June of 2015. But after over two years of review by the council and the National Marine Fisheries Service, it still hasn’t been implemented,,, click here to read the story 11:19

Fishing Industry Takes More Action Against New York Offshore Wind Lease

A group of fishing organizations, businesses and communities, led by the Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), has taken more action to halt the lease of Statoil’s planned wind farm off the coast of New York. The suit, filed against the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), is seeking summary judgment and requesting the court to invalidate the lease, which was awarded to Norwegian firm Statoil to develop the New York Wind Energy Area (NY WEA) late last year. click here to read the story 13:23

Not exactly a breeze: Offshore wind still faces challenges

Amid all of the challenges that could face offshore wind power along the East Coast — legal disputes from commercial fishing advocates, construction plans altered by whale migrations, President Donald Trump’s emphasis on revitalizing fossil fuels and more — some promising news for renewable industry supporters arrived in mid-March. That’s when a telling indication of how offshore wind power might fare under President Trump was delivered, after an uncertain, wait-and-see winter. Following months of silence about offshore wind, a statement by Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke gave an early glimpse of the administration’s tone. click here to read the story 09:22

Fishermen at odds over impact of Trump executive order

An executive order by President Donald Trump designed to radically cut back on federal regulations has spurred disagreement among fishermen about how it will affect them — and lawmakers and regulators aren’t sure what the answer is. Groups that represent both commercial and recreational fishermen are divided over whether Trump’s “one in, two out” approach to federal regulations will benefit their industry, harm it or not affect it at all.,, Several fishing groups, ranging from the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association to the Massachusetts Striped Bass Association, are joining Democratic Reps. Jared Huffman of California and Raul Grijalva of Arizona in asking Trump to rescind.,, Other industry interests, including the Fisheries Survival Fund, said the order will likely leave fisheries unaffected. The order would apply only to financially significant regulations, and that would not include things like opening fishing seasons and enforcing catch limits, said Drew Minkiewicz, an attorney for the fund. “All this talk about how you’re not going to be able to manage fisheries — not true, doesn’t apply, not going to happen,” he said. Read the full story here 15:04

Legal Fight in New York Offshore Wind Farm Case Continues on Merits; Request for Preliminary Injunction Denied

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia decided late Wednesday not to grant a preliminary injunction in the lawsuit brought by a host of fishing communities, associations and businesses led by scallop industry trade group the Fisheries Survival Fund against the impending leasing of the New York Wind Energy Area to Statoil Wind of Norway. The suit alleges the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) leasing process did not adequately consider the impact of wind power development in the waters off Long Island, New York on the region’s fishermen. The fishing industry asked that the court temporarily halt BOEM from proceeding with the final ratification of a lease on the area, which was preliminarily awarded to Statoil, Norway’s state oil company, for $42.5 million. “Getting a preliminary injunction granted is difficult, given the high standards that the court applies,” said Mayor Kirk Larson of Barnegat Light, N.J., one of the plaintiffs in the case. “But our case will continue, and we are confident that we will succeed on the merits.” Continue reading the article here 17:55

Fishing Industry Fights N.Y. Offshore Wind Area In Court

Lawyers representing a host of fishing communities, associations and businesses – led by scallop industry trade group the Fisheries Survival Fund – argued in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., yesterday against an offshore wind lease sale off the coast of Long Island, N.Y. A ruling is expected in the coming days, according to a press release from the Fisheries Survival Fund. The plaintiffs are seeking a preliminary injunction against the wind farm lease that the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) preliminarily awarded to Statoil for $42.5 million at an auction in December. They argued that the site of the project is in the middle of important fishing grounds, particularly for the scallop and squid fisheries. They also claimed that allowing the “unlawful” lease sale to go through would cause “irreparable harm to commercial fishermen.” Read the story here 07:31

Decision on preliminary injunction on offshore sale in ‘coming days’

A US court is expected to issue a ruling in the coming days on a lawsuit seeking a preliminary injunction against the development of the up to 1GW New York offshore wind farm lease area. The Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), which represents the majority of the limited access Atlantic scallop fleet, is the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit that alleges the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) leasing process did not adequately consider the impact of wind power development on the region’s fishermen. The plaintiffs, which also include the Garden State Seafood Association and the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association, argue that allowing the lease sale to go through would cause irreparable harm to commercial fishermen. Norwegian oil major Statoil won the December auction for the right to develop the 32,000-hectare site off the coast of Long Island with a bid of $42.5m. BOEM has delayed execution of the lease until the court has ruled on the preliminary injunction. Link 09:33

Statoil: Fishermen lobby for new spot for proposed Long Island wind farm

In Joe Gilbert’s view, fishermen like him shouldn’t have to compete with wind farms for a piece of the ocean. “We’re not anti-wind farm,” Gilbert said this past week. “But we don’t want to trade one renewable resource — fish — for another one — wind. They can both exist.” Gilbert is the owner of Empire Fisheries, which has four scallop and squid fishing boats based at the Town Dock. He’s also a member of the board of the Fisheries Survival Fund, one of 12 fishermen groups from New England to New Jersey opposing the federal government’s recent approval of a provisional lease to a Norwegian company that proposes to develop a wind farm on 79,350 acres of ocean bottom about 13 miles south of Jones Beach in Hempstead, Long Island. “What we’re asking is that it be relocated,” said Meghan Lapp, fisheries liaison with Sea Freeze, a squid wholesaler based in North Kingstown, R.I., that has joined the Fisheries Survival Fund in challenging the wind farm plan. The site of the proposed wind farm, fishermen say, is one of the most productive squid and scallop fishing areas in the North Atlantic. But the long trawling nets used by these fisheries could not maneuver within a “pinball machine of structures” that would constitute the wind farm, Lapp said. “It would be too dangerous.” Read the story here 09:01

East Coast Fishermen: not so fast with that wind farm  

Could sea scallops and longfin squid be reason enough to stop an offshore wind farm on the coast of New York and New Jersey? The Fisheries Survival Fund, which represents the majority of the U.S. Atlantic scallop industry, claims the site picked for the farm is on documented fishing grounds for both commercially important species. It claims the wind turbines would shut fishermen out. The group is the lead plaintiff in a federal lawsuit filed against the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and Sally Jewell, the secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The BOEM has jurisdiction over the sea floor. Other plaintiffs include the Garden State Seafood Association, the Fishermen’s Dock Co-Operative in Point Pleasant Beach and the Borough of Barnegat Light. Read the story here 09:51

Alternative Energy Collides With Fishermen’s Livelihood Off Long Island

The federal government on Thursday plans to auction off a parcel of 79,000 acres in the Atlantic Ocean just south of Long Island to build a wind farm over fishing grounds that scallop and squid fishermen say are vital to their trade. Bidders hope to secure a 25-year lease to operate a wind farm, to sell the electricity to energy-hungry Long Island and the New York City region. Offshore wind is a big part of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan for New York to get half of its energy from alternative sources by 2030. But the commercial fishing industry opposes building wind turbines on this particular stretch of the Atlantic Ocean, which is sandwiched between shipping lanes into and out of the New York harbor. “We are very afraid we are going to lock up an area of the bottom that is definitely favorable for scallop settlement,” said James Gutowski, a scallop fisherman from Barnegat Light, N.J., and chairman of the Fisheries Survival Fund. Members of the fishing industry say the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management didn’t adequately consider what the impact would have on scallop and squid fishing grounds. Read the story here 08:24

Scallop & Fishing Industry, Municipalities, Sue Feds to Ensure Seafood Interests Are Considered in NY Bight Wind Energy Project

new-york-wind-energy-area-boem-webThe Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), which represents the majority of the limited access Atlantic scallop fleet, is the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit seeking a preliminary injunction to delay an anticipated lease sale for the development of a 26-mile long wind farm project approximately 11 miles off the coast of Long Island, scheduled for December 15, 2016. The story was broken today by the Associated Press.,, The filing alleges that the leasing process for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) did not adequately consider the impact the proposed New York Wind Energy Area would have on the region’s fishermen. The site chosen for the 127 square mile wind farm is in the waters of the New York Bight on vital, documented scallop and squid fishing grounds,,,The lawsuit argues that fishermen’s concerns regarding the location of the lease area received “virtually no attention or analysis” from government officials ahead of the planned December 15 lease sale, despite fishing stakeholders repeatedly making their concerns known. Read the story here 11:40

East Coast Fishermen voice objections over plan for wind farm off New York coast

A long-stalled plan to build a forest of power-producing windmills off the coast of New York may finally be gathering momentum, and that is sparking concern among commercial fishermen who fear the giant turbines will ruin an area rich with scallops and other sea life. Federal officials announced earlier this month that they would auction off the rights to build the wind power farm on a 127-square-mile wedge of the Atlantic Ocean. The tip of the wedge begins about 11 miles south of Long Island’s popular Jones Beach and spreads out across an area, sandwiched between major shipping lanes, where trawlers harvest at least $3.3 million worth of sea scallops each year, as well as smaller amounts of mackerel, squid and other species, according to a study commissioned by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. “There’s got to be a better place,” said Eric Hansen, a scallop fisherman based in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Read the rest here 08:39

NEFSC, R/V Hugh R. Sharp Lose HabCam during Scallop survey, Fisheries Survival Fund takes them to task!

img03 hab camLast Thursday, May 19, 2016, while on the current scallop survey, the NEFSC crew lost the HabCam when it separated from the vessel. According to initial reports, it was inadvertently driven into the side of a known and charted shipwreck while being operated by a volunteer, losing at least a week of valuable sea time. Several knowledgeable sources have suggested that there could be as much as $100,000 in damage. Accordingly, the researchers must return to port to acquire a remote operated vehicle, which they will use to attempt to find the lost HabCam. The loss of a key piece of scallop survey equipment demonstrates the need for an overhaul of how the federal government assesses the species. The Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF), which represents the majority of the limited access scallop fleet, calls for reforms to how scallop surveys are conducted to prevent such an incident from derailing surveys in the future. Read the rest here 17:25

Scallop Sparks flying in advance of New England Fishery Management Council meeting

mkThe scallop industry is on high alert over next week’s meeting of the New England Fishery Management Council after a long warning letter was sent to the council by NOAA Fisheries Regional Administrator John Bullard. The council’s Habitat Committee has issued recommendations that fishing restrictions be lifted on several areas of Georges Bank, the Gulf of Maine and the South Channel. But Bullard, backed by his agency’s scientific staff, said he believes that the relaxing of the restrictions would set back the effort to nurse fish stocks back to health. Read the rest here 22:03

Your View: Eric Hansen – Scallopers need access to Georges Bank

sct logoThe scallop fishery has become the lifeblood of the New Bedford waterfront, a bright spot in a fishing industry encumbered by onerous regulations and heavy-handed management. It has helped make New Bedford, for the 13th year in a row, the most valuable port in the nation. But,,,Read more here  11:11

CLF Environmental Lawyers Attack Industry Lawyers on Closure Issues Using Research That Fails To Support Their Own Recommendations

WASHINGTON — February 24, 2014 — The following was released by Andrew E. Minkiewicz and Anne Hawkins of the Fisheries Survival Fund : Last week, the lawyers at the Conservation Law Foundation used a posting on their Talking Fish blog (“Industry Lawyers Wrong on Closed Areas Science: An Open and Shut Case, February 18, 2014) to attack our Read more here  08:23

MSA Reauth Road Show: Fisheries Survival Fund responds to Conservation Law Foundation attack on scallop industry testimony

duncey peteFSF did not say management has failed but rather changes are needed to provide flexibility and consistency to meet market demands. Industry has proven its stewardship of the resource.  Maintaining all closures allows the scallops to age and die, providing no benefit to communities. Allowing access into some closed areas will introduce more areas into the rotational system allowing a more consistent scallop catch without threatening the sustainability of the scallop fishery. more here 23:15

Should the Scallop Industry that saved itself from NMFS doom regulate itself? You’re damned right it should!

Fisheries Survival Fund tells Senators scallopers have earned the  right to self-regulation; Argues regulators failed to solve problems when they could – Eric Hansen and Drew Minkiewicz of the Fisheries Survival Fund (FSF) , which represents the majority of the full-time Limited Access scallop fleet, testified  this morning at a Senate field listening session – Our investments and sacrifices have paid off. more here 09:04

Fisheries Survival Fund takes aim at yellowtail flounder stock assessments that are “deeply flawed” and unsuitable for use as a regulatory tool.

The Fisheries Survival Fund wrote to NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC) Director Dr. Bill Karp. It said the uncertainty factor in the assessments is so great that they are effectively useless. [email protected]  20:27

Scientists, Industry Leaders Question Validity of Yellowtail Flounder Assessments

logoAs the Transboundary Resources Assessment Committee (TRAC) publicizes its recommendations for drastically reduced catch limits for Georges Bank yellowtail flounder, a diverse group of industry stakeholders and marine scientists are raising questions about the reliability of the TRAC’s advice and the underlying science behind it. This includes one of the largest industry associations, the Fisheries Survival Fund, and the current President of the American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists (AIFRB), Dr. Steve Cadrin. [email protected]  12:29
Scallop Industry: There has been “no progress” in Yellowtail Flounder Assessments  Links

VIDEO: F S F Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder and Incidental Catch Avoidance Forum (lots of information)

WASHINGTON (Saving Seafood) Nov. 14, 2012 – Yesterday, the Fisheries Survival Fund, an industry group that includes the majority of full-time, limited-access scallop permit holders,  hosted a forum, “Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder and Incidental Catch Avoidance,” immediately following the New England Fisheries Management Council meeting in Newport, Rhode Island. Speakers at the event included Dr. Steve Cadrin and Cate O’Keefe of the School of Marine Science and Technology (SMAST) at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Dr. David Rudders of the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, and Ron Smolowitz of Coonamessett Farms. http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?llr=b5nrgsdab&v=001aYDP54lNfT8w5naOyp7HRIgB4VG_lM4fDpTYpg49faLY5slnOWx7hp5-MTnG5BD5KPWh852FbmnbhXTHgUt6n45ny7Eyz5sx1B2fXOjmK-cdZ3Nh3VTYuw%3D%3D