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#06-29-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

Tundra landscape near Bristol Bay
Tundra landscape near Bristol Bay (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Bristol Bay fishermen support fleet reduction, study says
June 28th 5:42 pm | Hannah Heimbuch      
Should the state of Alaska buy back some of its limited entry permits in Bristol Bay?
A study recently released by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association indicates that fishermen say yes. The organization sent out a questionnaire this spring to all 1,858 Bristol Bay drift permit holders. They are still accepting returned questionnaires, but have gotten back more than 400 so far. According to the seafood development association, which supports market, product and....

5:05 PM FRI JUNE 28, 2013
Bristol Bay Fisheries Report for June 28....

Kasilof nets hit the water
Posted: June 27, 2013 - 7:52pm  |  Updated: June 28, 2013 - 8:16am
By Rashah McChesney
Peninsula Clarion
Aaron Kaas pulled the first sockeye of the season out of a beach net on his family’s setnet sites near Clam Gulch. It took several tries as the 11-year-old grimaced, pulled, unwrapped the net and rewrapped it in the opposite direction even....

Go North, America – to the Arctic
By Lisa Murkowski, Op-ed contributor / June 28, 2013
Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski writes that until the US makes the Arctic an issue of national importance, America’s future there will be severely limited while other countries move ahead. The US can take a crucial step by ratifying the Law of the Sea treaty.
America was born from pioneers who saw opportunities and seized them. From the early colonies to westward expansion across prairies and up rivers, visionaries moved to regions blessed with an abundance of possibilities. That spirit is in short supply now when the United States truly needs it, as much of the world looks “north to the future” to all that is opening up for our nation in the Arctic region. Make no doubt about it: The United States is an Arctic nation. The question is, what does the future hold for the US in the Arctic? And are we preparing for the challenges and benefits that are in front of us? Until we make the Arctic an issue of national importance, rather than regional, America’s future there will be severely.........

FRIDAY, JUNE 28, 2013
Is this anything?
Some days ago, on June 19, a senior seafood buyer for retail giant Walmart sent salmon suppliers this letter. "Please review the attached letter in regards to wild salmon. This is a reconfirmation of our requirements for sustainable sourcing of wild salmon," said an email introducing the letter. "Now that the wild salmon harvest season is upon us, please review your source fisheries to ensure that they meet our sustainability requirements." The letter said.... (link to letter).....

NOAA seeks public input on proposed halibut catch sharing plan
June 28, 2013
(SitNews) - NOAA Fisheries is seeking public input on proposed regulations that would implement a catch sharing plan for the commercial and guided sport (charter) Pacific halibut fisheries in Southeast Alaska and the Central Gulf of Alaska. Pacific halibut in Southeast Alaska and the Central Gulf of Alaska is fully utilized by commercial, recreational, subsistence, and personal use sectors........

Adak Seeks Processing Plant Operator
By Stephanie Joyce
Friday, June 28 2013
Last week, the City of Adak and the Adak Community Development Corporation bought $2 million worth of fish processing equipment at auction. Now, they’re looking for someone to operate it. The equipment was up for sale because Icicle Seafoods pulled out of Adak earlier this year. City Manager Layton Lockett says in an ideal world, another seafood processor would have swooped in and......

Fishing continues on smaller scale in Adak
June 28th 5:38 pm | Jim Paulin      
Adak's halibut arrives fresh in Boston faster than anywhere else in the state of Alaska, according to a small boat fisherman who said it to the East Coast within five days. "Nobody else in the state of Alaska can touch that," said fisherman Steve Stark. Even with the big Icicle plant's surprise closure in April, commercial fishing continues on a smaller scale in Adak, according to Stark, captain of the 50-foot fishing boat Sellah which was in Unalaska early this week for supplies.....

Transportation evolving on Akun Island
June 28th 5:43 pm | Jim Paulin
The evolution of transportation to the new airport on Akun Island may ultimately lead to a watercraft that crawls on land, replacing the rotary blades that will probably soon replace the spendy and frequently useless hovercraft which often sits idle because of strong winds and waves. The Akutan hovercraft's days could be coming to an end, depending on the prices offered by helicopter operators, according to Aleutians East Borough manager Rick Gifford. The hovercraft costs taxpayers $2.5 million a year, under a one-year contract that contains 90-day termination clause that the borough hopes to activate as soon as possible. The request for proposals calls for a chopper that can carry at least six passengers plus the U.S. mail. A decision is expected in a couple of months by the borough assembly, said Gifford, who said a longterm solution might float and also crawl. A Ketchikan company, Amphib Alaska, is drawing up plans for....

Port of Anchorage Expansion Project Gets $40 Million Loan
By Steve MacDonald
Channel 2 News
6:57 p.m. AKDT, June 28, 2013
On Friday, the embattled Port of Anchorage expansion project got a little good news.....,0,346827.story

Native Alaska, Under Threat
Published: June 27, 2013
PARK CITY, Utah — I TRAVEL the world on the professional ski and snowboard circuit, but I grew up in a place most will never know firsthand. I was raised in Aleknagik, Alaska — an indigenous Yupik Eskimo village 400 air miles from the nearest chairlift and accessible only by boat and plane. It’s one of the most remote places in North America......

Unprecedented Restrictions Change Lower Yukon Fishing Culture
By Kyle Clayton, KYUK - Bethel | June 28, 2013 - 4:45 pm
An unprecedented set of new policies from Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game are changing the way Yukon commercial and subsistence fisherman have been fishing their entire lives. Some residents are using Kenai River style dip nets for the first time and catching lots of fish.....

Tester sees progress in genetically modified food labeling
16 hours ago  •  By Tom Lutey
Labels for genetically modified food have been a slippery fish for biotech opponents, but a new amendment targeting salmon might set the hook, U.S. Sen. Jon Tester said. Montana’s Democratic junior senator recently joined a thin bipartisan majority on the Senate Appropriations Committee to require labeling of genetically modified salmon. Should the labeling law lure enough votes from the full Senate and House, farmed salmon genetically modified to grow twice as fast as regular salmon would be the United States’ first food with a GM label. Though developed, GM salmon is not yet for sale. The Food and Drug Administration has.........

AquaBounty CEO 'disappointed' by another setback
Friday, June 28, 2013, 23:50 (GMT + 9)
The biotechnology company AquaBounty CEO says he is “disappointed” by the recent Senate Appropriations Committee’s adoption of the amendment sponsored by Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, which represents another obstacle to the approval of the firm’s genetically modified (GM) salmon. If approved, the fish, which grows twice as fast as wild salmon, would be the first GM animal introduced to the human food supply. The amendment requiring mandatory labelling of GM salmon makes points against this fish citing consumer concern, the fact that escaped GM fish could breed with ....................The Alaskan Representative Don Young (R-AK) has summed up the Alaskan view on AquaBounty by stating: “If I can keep this up long enough, I can break that company and I admit that’s what I’m trying to do.” “Such actions are reprehensible in a free market economy in a society that prides itself on science based regulation,” Stotish concluded.....

Jun 28, 2013
NOAA decides against listing great white sharks as endangered
Great white sharks in the northeastern Pacific, including California, are not in danger of becoming extinct, according to NOAA Fisheries, and will not be listed under the Endangered Species Act. NOAA had consented to consider listing white sharks as endangered in response to two petitions submitted last year. In a news release issued Friday, the federal agency explained that a team of eight scientists determined, based on review of the best available science, that white sharks in the northeast Pacific--from the Bering Sea to Mexico, and westward to Hawaii--have "a low to very low risk of extinction now and in the foreseeable future." While conservation groups and some in research circles will argue that white shark numbers are low enough to.....

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