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#05-31-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

Two Optimistic King Crab Announcements this Week (Aleutian browns may beat Bristol Bay 
Map of Bristol Bay, Alaska
Map of Bristol Bay, Alaska (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
May 30, 2013
Jay Barrett/KMXT
There were a couple of announcements with good news for king crab this week.  First came word from Seward that Kodiak red king crab were successfully hatchery raised for the first time. Previous successes have come from red king crab stock from Bristol Bay and the Juneau area....

A New Report Seeks to Gauge the Economic Impact of the Proposed Pebble Mine
The Pebble Limited Partnership has released a new study that seeks to define the potential economic and employment contributions of the proposed Pebble Mine. KDLG’s Mike Mason took a look at the new study and filed this report....

Final action set for trawl fleet king salmon bycatch limit
Alaska Journal of Commerce / June-Issue-1 2013
As fisheries managers throughout Alaska prepare for low king salmon returns, federal regulators are considering new limits on king bycatch in the Gulf of Alaska. The North Pacific Fishery Management Council’s June agenda includes final action on a king salmon bycatch cap in the Gulf of Alaska non-pollock trawl fisheries, review of a plan to collect more information on Gulf trawl bycatch, and a discussion paper on bycatch management for the Gulf trawl fleet. The council meets June 5 to 11 in Juneau. The council took final action on king bycatch in Gulf of Alaska pollock fisheries in 2011, setting a cap of 25,000 fish. Now, the council has a suite of options and alternatives to deal with the non-pollock....

Global Fresh Foods First to Bring a 40-foot Container of Fresh Salmon from Chile to the US by Sea
(UNITED STATES, 5/30/2013)
Global Fresh Foods, the company that naturally extends the shelf life of fresh proteins, has announced that it has successfully ocean freighted 40,000 pounds of fresh salmon from Lirquen, Bio-Bio, Chilet o the Port of Long Beach, California without the use of polystyrene or ice. Instead, GFF employed its patented, controlled atmosphere fuel cell-based technology to keep fish fresh for the entire length of its journey. The Port of Long Beach is the second busiest container port in the United States....

Kuskokwim River, Kuskokwim Bay forecasts similar to 2012
Fishermen on the Kuskokwim River and in Kuskokwim Bay can expect another year of decreased salmon harvests. On the Kuskokwim River, 160,000-240,000 kings are expected to return, according to a recent announcement from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, or ADFG. That could be enough to meet the drainage-wide escapement goal of 65,000-120,000 and meet the average subsistence harvest of 84,000. However, according to the department, escapements in area rivers have been poor in recent years, and the exact run is not yet known.....

In-river Alaska salmon fishermen absorb another blow, this time on Copper River
Craig Medred
May 30, 2013
Fresh on the heels of a series of the Bethel trials, at which fishermen argued that restrictions on in-river catches of salmon violated their religious right to fish, another group of Alaskans are feeling the sting of in-river salmon closures. The victims this time are Copper River dipnetters. The first opening for that Alaska food fishery, originally set for June 7-9, has been cancelled for a lack of fish. One of the big complaints from Kuskokwim River subsistence gillnetters cited for fishing in violation of closures on that river last summer was that in-river fishermen always pay the price of conservation while offshore commercial fishermen are allowed to go about their business at will. The situation is seldom that simple, but sometimes -- as on the Copper River this week -- it looks that way.....
Chinook bag limit increased in designated areas
by Marco Torres
May 30, 2013 3:35 PM
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced Wednesday that the bag and possession limit for king salmon in two Ketchikan sport fishery areas is six salmon of any size, effective Saturday through July 31. Due to higher projected returns, a surplus of hatchery fish is available for harvest by sports fishermen. King salmon caught in the designated harvest areas by...

2:33 PM THU MAY 30, 2013
H2O Visa for Seafood Processor Workers to be Debated in Senate with Immigration Reform
Seafood processors feeling a labor crunch from the loss of J1 student workers will be keeping an eye on Congress this summer. The Senate will soon take up legislation that creates a visa category specifically for the fish processing industry. Senator Mark Begich is leading the push to create the H2O visa.  Senators will discuss the visa in a much bigger debate: that of broad immigration reform.  Begich said the senate will begin on the issue around the second week of June.....
The Alaska Fisheries Report
May 30, 2013
Coming up this week: Togiak herring wrapped up, cannery workers in Platinum will be making bank this summer, and the North Pacific Fishery Management Council is set to make a final decision on Gulf King bycatch. All that, and yes, more fish-smuggling in the news – at least this time it wasn’t in their pants.  The Alaska Fisheries Report came together this week through the fishy reporting of KDLG’s Dave Bendinger and Ben Matheson in Dillingham, and KFSK’s Matt Lichtenstein in Petersburg....

No more fish waste disposal in Petersburg harbors
May 30, 2013
Petersburg Harbormaster, Glorianne Wollen, has issued an alert to the public stating there will be no more fish waste disposal allowed in Petersburg harbors effective immediately. “We have had a big problem with aggressive sea lions around the fish cleaning stations,” Wollen said. “It is nice to have the stations, but we seem to be drawing the sea lions in by the fish waste.” Wollen is asking that fishermen clean the fish and throw the waste out before they come back to the harbor, or take the waste away from the harbor after cleaning the fish. “This issue will be discussed at the next Borough Assembly meeting, but...

State Seeks Backup Options for M/V Tustumena
By Lauren Rosenthal
Thursday, May 30 2013
In less than six weeks, the Tustumena ferry is supposed to wrap up repairs and set sail to southwest Alaska. But the shipyard says that delivery date isn’t looking realistic. As the state faces yet another blown deadline for getting the Tustumena back in service, they’ve started looking for other ships to pick up the ferry’s route. And as KUCB’s Lauren Rosenthal reports, it doesn’t have to be a perfect fit. Seward Ship’s Drydock has been working on the Tustumena for seven months now. At every turn, they’ve uncovered previously unknown problems -- with the steelwork, the computer systems....

Seward flotilla calls for boating safety
May 30, 2013
With rise in boating accident deaths last year in Alaska, Sue Lang, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary’s flotilla vice commander in Seward had a wealth of practical advice for recreational boaters during a boating safety address she gave to local business leaders at the Seward Chamber of Commerce luncheon prior to the busy harbor weekend opening. National Safe Boating Week, which she also chairs, took place May 18 to 24. It also marked Seward Boat Harbor Opening weekend, and the week before the busy Memorial Day weekend. Her safety message comes as the Coast Guard nationwide....

Sustainable fishing exhibit makes debut on World Oceans Day
May 30, 2013
Anew exhibit will open on June 8 at the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward. The exhibit, a 21-foot fishing boat which sits within a harbor scene, will highlight the importance and successes of sustainably managing Alaska’s fisheries. The grand opening will happen in conjunction with other scheduled activities and events at the Center to celebrate World Oceans Day. This boat replaces...

Copper River 30 Dinner at Blue Acre Seafood: Jon Rowley Praises Cordova’s Fishermen and Commitment to Quality
For Immediate Release
May 31, 2013
 Cordova, Alaska—On Wednesday, May 29th, more than 100 salmon lovers attended the Copper River 30 Dinner held at Blue Acre Seafood in downtown Seattle.  Owner and Executive Chef, Kevin Davis and his wife, Terresa, organized the event as a way to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first fresh Copper River king being shipped to Seattle. The dinner also celebrated Jon Rowley’s pivotal role in this event which permanently shifted the fishery. Jon Rowley, known as Seattle’s seafood guru, was a restaurant consultant in 1983. He was also a former commercial salmon troller in South East Alaska and sensed that the Copper River kings, if handled properly, could become a uniquely special fish that stood above the rest.   He wanted to get it out of cans and...

Greenpeace welcomes leading retailers' commitment
Friday, May 31, 2013, 03:20 (GMT + 9)
Greenpeace has released its 2013 Carting Away the Oceans (CATO) report ranking supermarkets on the sustainability of their seafood policies, in which the NGO celebrates the progress achieved by some of the main retailers in the country. Since its start in 2008 and up until 2013, only Safeway and Whole Foods had earned the “green rating,” but this year Safeway, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s have earned green ratings too. Further, Walmart has introduced both fish aggregating device (FAD)-free skipjack and pole-and-line albacore in more than 3,000 stores across the US, for the first time providing a large portion of the US population with affordable and responsibly caught canned tuna. "It's great news that Walmart, Safeway and Trader Joe's are....
Northern Snakehead Fish, Invasive Species, May Not Be As Bad As Originally Thought
Reuters  |  Posted: 05/30/2013 6:59 am EDT
By Environment Correspondent Deborah Zabarenko
MOUNT VERNON, Va., May 30 (Reuters) - They're freakishly strong, hungry air-breathers that can survive for short periods on land. But northern snakehead fish, once viewed as an unstoppable scourge in U.S. waters, may have gotten a bad rap. So far, they've surfaced in waters from Massachusetts to California, and from Manhattan's Central Park to a pair of creeks in Arkansas. The biggest cluster is in and around the Chesapeake Bay, and officials in Maryland and Virginia have taken...

The Fire Next Time: Coos Bay’s LNG plan
by In the news Thursday, May 30. 2013
by Wim de Vriend
The recent glad tidings of “significant regulatory progress” for Jordan Cove’s proposed LNG export terminal in Coos Bay need to be taken with a sizable grain of salt.  All that Jordan Cove’s “major milestone” amounted to was its filing of a formal application for approval with FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which has authority over the siting of LNG terminals.  It will take FERC at least a year to study all aspects of the project, after which it will rule on the application.  And besides FERC’s approval, several others will still be needed, including for the 230-mile pipeline to feed the terminal, from both Coos and Douglas counties.  Up in Astoria, Clatsop County has denied a pipeline approval for the only other LNG export terminal proposed on the West Coast.  No doubt this met with approval from the local landowners whose properties would be taken by eminent domain, for the benefit of a single gas merchant....

Fukushima fishermen sample radiation levels
HISANOHAMA, Japan (Reuters) - Dozens of crabs, three small sharks and scores of fish thump on the slippery deck of the fishing boat True Prosperity as captain Shohei Yaoita lands his latest haul, another catch headed not for the dinner table but for radioactive testing....

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