DEVELOPING THE PROTECTED RESOURCES AFFECTED ENVIRONMENT FOR ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENTS AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENTS

Danielle Palmer

Abstract


In the Greater Atlantic Region (GAR), the National Marine Fisheries Service Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, in association with the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fisheries Management Councils, is charged with conserving and managing fishery resources in the United States Exclusive Economic Zone. Fishery management plans (FMPs) have been developed and authorized for 13 fisheries in the GAR. In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, every framework adjustment or amendment to an FMP requires the development of an Environmental Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement , which assesses the potential impacts of the proposed action, and its alternatives, on the valued ecosystem components (VECs) of the affected environment (AE). Although the specifics may vary, VECs can range from protected resources to human communities.  This document highlights the protected resources VEC, which includes all designated critical habitat and endangered, threatened, or candidate species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and/or marine mammals protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). Specifically, information on ESA-listed and MMPA- protected species that should be considered in the creation of the protected resources AE for Federal fishery actions in the GAR are summarized.


Keywords


Endangered Species Act; Marine Mammal Protection Act; Greater Atlantic Region; Sea Turtles; Whales; Small Cetaceans; Pinnipeds; Atlantic Sturgeon; Atlantic Salmon; Gillnet; Bottom Trawl; Mid-Water Trawl; Purse Seine; Bottom Longline; Hydraulic Clam Dredge

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