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#04-29-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

April 29, 2013
Fishing panel eyes fed stamp for seafood
By Richard Gaines
Staff Writer
The New England Fishery Management Council, NOAA’s grassroots policy writing and advisory arm, is urging the U.S. Commerce Department to create a sustainability certification system with federal oversight for seafood caught by American boats from U.S. ports. The council voted 16-0 at the end of its three day meeting in Mystic, Conn., to ask Congress to include in its rewrite of the Magnuson-Stevens Act language establishing a certification program for seafood — similar to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s stamp of approval for meat......

Peninsula growers discuss single farmers market
The Associated Press
KENAI, Alaska — Kenai Peninsula farmers and gardeners would bring produce to a central location under a plan being discussed with Kenai Peninsula Food Bank officials. The central peninsula currently features farmers markets in Kenai and Soldotna but growers say there are advantages to consolidating them at.....

New Weirs Equals More Accurate King Salmon Numbers
By Garrett Turner
Channel 2 News
9:32 p.m. AKDT, April 28, 2013
While many are making summer plans, this is the time of the year when work ramps up for Alaska's Department of Fish and Game. The department received funding from the Alaska Energy Authority to build four new weirs in Lake Creek and....,0,2139525.story

Alaska should stop pursuing ludicrous Susitna Dam project
Richard Leo
April 28, 2013
The second tallest of 80,000 dams in America -- to be built across the Susitna River that drains the Alaska Range -- has been proceeding swiftly toward construction for two years. And few people know much about it. It would be the most expensive state-funded project in Alaska history, estimated at $5.2 billion. Its capacity is for 600 megawatts of electricity; the Grand Coulee dam's capacity is 7,000 megawatts. Its winter water discharge would be 10 times greater than normal winter flows, impacting first-year salmon juveniles that overwinter in the...

Oregon Sen. Wyden: Hydropower 'ripe for political action'
By Corbin Hiar
At a conference the day before a key congressional hydropower hearing, U.S. lawmakers expressed confidence that a bipartisan measure to promote the industry would be signed into law, but questions remain about the legislative path forward for the effort. "There is a real hunger, on both the House and the Senate side, to break the gridlock" on energy policy, Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore., told attendees of the National Hydropower Association's annual conference on April 22. "I know when something is ripe for political action, and that's where hydro is now," added the 32-year veteran of Capitol Hill. The bill with the best chance of making it through a divided Congress appears to be the Hydropower Improvement Act of 2013, S. 545, an effort to promote the development of small installations and shorten the regulatory time frame for low-impact projects. It was introduced by Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, the committee's ranking member, on March 13 and is co-sponsored by....

Pebble Partnership Calls On the EPA To Abandon Flawed, Biased Report
Follow the Established, Scientific Regulatory Review Process for Resource Development Projects
Anchorage, Alaska, April 26, 2013 – Pebble Partnership CEO John Shively issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) releasing a second draft Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment  evaluating the estimated environmental impacts of a hypothetical mine on the Bristol Bay Watershed: “While we need to review the document in detail, it seems the EPA has not changed its deeply flawed approach of creating and evaluating a completely hypothetical mine plan, instead of waiting until a real, detailed mine plan is submitted to regulators as part of a complete permit application. By continuing on this course, the EPA is ignoring....

Power failure, restart preceded ship collision
April 26, 2013 - 5:50pm BY THE CHRONICLE HERALD
A power failure followed by an unexpected engine restart aboard an American fishing trawler occurred moments before it rammed a Canadian navy frigate in Esquimalt Harbour, near Victoria....