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#01-17-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

Dipnet fisherman on Copper River at Chitina.
Dipnet fisherman on Copper River at Chitina. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
State questions religious protection for fishermen
Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2013 2:18 pm | Updated: 2:59 pm, Wed Jan 16, 2013.
Associated Press
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - State prosecutors are disputing religious protection claims by Alaska Native fishermen cited for illegal fishing who say bans on their subsistence lifestyle violate their spiritual freedoms. The fishermen "raised an issue without adequately briefing it," the state said in a court filing this week. Prosecutors were responding to a motion seeking to consolidate the April trials of 21 fishermen to allow two specialists to testify as....

Law of the Sea remains critical for Alaska, nation
Posted by Editor on Jan 16th, 2013
By Sen. Mark Begich
Failure of the U.S. Senate to ratify the Law of the Sea Treaty this past year denied an opportunity to promote strong, growing economies and jobs here in Alaska and across the nation. But the fight to reassert U.S. leadership in global maritime policy is not over yet. While this treaty has important benefits for the entire nation, nowhere is the need to ratify the Law of the Sea more apparent than here in Alaska. The warming Arctic is bringing challenges across our expansive coast, undercutting coastal villages and buckling permafrost roads and runways. But the diminishing Arctic icepack – which shrank to a record low size last summer – also means increased economic activity.....

Board of Fisheries begins discussion of Kuskokwim proposals
Jan 16, 2013 - 08:24 PM
Members of the public turned out to talk about subsistence, commercial and sport fishing in the Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim region at the Board of Fisheries meeting today. Representatives from regional Advisory Committees, or ACs, talked about the regulatory change proposals their committees supported and opposed. Charlie Campbell from the Tanana Rampart Manley committee said that AC unanimously agreed on.....

Adak Banks on More Business with New Fish Tax
By Stephanie Joyce
Wednesday, January 16 2013
Voters in Adak approved the first raw fish tax in the city's history just before the end of last year. City manager Layton Lockett says the new, 2 percent tax will bring the city in line with the rest of the region. “We want to create an environment where operating in Adak is the same as operating in Unalaska, and Sand Point, and Kodiak, and....

Story last updated at 4:31 PM on Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Task force considers changes to Cook Inlet plan
By Rashah McChesney
Morris News Service - Alaska
Ten Upper Cook Inlet Task Force members met Monday to address the mountain of data generated since their last meeting, propose changes to salmon management plans and hear from local fishermen. The day began with a presentation on a draft escapement goal recommendation of 15,000 to 30,000 late-run chinook salmon in the Kenai River. Alaska Department of Fish and Game's Chief Fisheries Scientist Bob Clark answered questions about the draft report and how the...

Why Do We Need GMO Farmed Salmon?
Posted: 01/16/2013 12:18 pm
Bristol Bay salmon fisherman Christopher Nicolson
There are plenty of reasons to oppose genetically engineered salmon, ranging from consumer health concerns to environmental risk, but there's a larger question we need to ask in the debate around Frankenfish: what kind of food system do we want to sustain us? AquaBounty, the company who genetically engineered this fast-growing salmon hybrid, claims that we need GMO farmed salmon to meet growing demand. But do we?...

Comments due by Feb. 25 on GM salmon
Posted 01/17/2013
by - Cordova Times Staff
Federal officials are accepting public comment through Feb. 25 on the federal Food and Drug Administration's draft environmental assessment and preliminary finding of no significant impact concerning genetically modified Atlantic salmon.....

2013 Chitina forecast: Lots of reds but not many kings
Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2013 12:00 am
Tim Mowry
FAIRBANKS — There should be plenty of red salmon in the Copper River for Chitina dip-netters to scoop up this summer, but that probably won’t be the case for king salmon, based on the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s 2013 Copper River salmon forecast.....

Mandatory vessel safety checks postponed
by Matt Lichtenstein
January 16, 2013 12:36 pm
A new dockside safety exam requirement for many commercial fishing boats has been postponed for a couple years. The once-voluntary safety checks were slated to become mandatory last October for vessels that operate more than three miles from land. However, Congress pushed that deadline back with passage of the Coast Guard’s latest funding bill....

Jan 16, 2013 - 04:03 PM AKST
Halibut Commission to set 2013 catch, consider management changes
The International Pacific Halibut Commission will meet in Victoria, British Columbia, Jan. 21 to Jan. 25 to set catch limits and review its management strategies. Discussion of the 2013 catch limits will begin Jan. 21, when the commission hears a presentation of staff harvest advice during the first public session. A decision is due at the end of meeting. Under the most likely scenario presented at the commission’s interim meeting in November, the....

New 'marine reserves' don't protect ocean
A new network of controversial "marine protected areas" went into effect on the North Coast from Point Arena to the Oregon border on December 19, completing the statewide network from the Oregon to the Mexican border created under the privately funded Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative. The completion of the network was accompanied by a flurry of press releases from the Department of Fish and Game (now Department of Fish and Wildlife), Natural Resources Agency and corporate environmental NGOs and "puff pieces" by....

January 17, 2013
Fish aid push goes to Senate
By Richard Gaines
Staff Writer
The quest for funding to back a government declaration that the Northeast groundfishery and two others have economically failed for reasons not attributable to fishermen shifts now from what industry supporters see as an unsympathetic, Republican-led U.S. House to a more understanding Senate....

Copper Valley gets break in new emissions rules
Posted 01/16/2013
by - Cordova Times Staff
A final rule for emissions standards for stationary internal combustion engines used in power generation specifically exempts diesel generation in Alaska not connected to the Railbelt energy grid, a big cost savings for Copper Valley and Valdez residents.....

Mounds of frozen fish? Think outside the grill
Posted: January 16, 2013 - 6:58pm  |  Updated: January 16, 2013 - 7:12pm
By Brian Smith
Peninsula Clarion
The cold, dark days of winter offer plenty of opportunity for fishermen to be adventurous with cooking frozen fish they’ve accumulated during the summer. Some fishermen might be tired of having fish again and again in the same way they’ve always known. Others may be staring down a pile of frozen fillets from last year … or is that pile from......

Globalstar: Don't be afraid of our private Wi-Fi superhighway plan
Bluetooth SIG and Wi-Fi group: But you'll run us off the road!
By Bill Ray • Get more from this author
Posted in Mobile, 16th January 2013 19:33 GMT
Free whitepaper – A Paradigm Shift in Digital Asset Storage
Globalstar's plan to refarm its satellite spectrum into a privately held Wi-Fi channel has come under fire from the Wi-Fi Alliance and Bluetooth SIG, which reckon it will edge out the unlicensed users....

New UMass Amherst Research Shows Fishways Have Not Helped Fish
By Janet Lathrop | UMassAmherst By Janet Lathrop | UMassAmherst 01/16/2013 06:36:00
AMHERST, Mass. – Despite modern designs intended to allow migratory fish to pass, hydropower dams on major Northeast U.S. waterways, including the Merrimack and Connecticut rivers, have failed to let economically important species such as salmon, shad and river herring reach their spawning grounds, say a team of economists and fish ecologists including Adrian Jordaan of the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
This raises serious questions about the impact of new dams now being planned and constructed on major waterways worldwide, say the researchers in the current issue of Conservation Letters (registration required for general public). The international team......