The Programmatic Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, created in 2004, is the document that guides fisheries management in the North Pacific, including the setting of commercial fishing harvest quotas and bycatch limits in the Bering Sea. Because of the levels of environmental changes, species declines, and impacts to communities because of these changes that have occurred since 2004, we find this document to be outdated and in need of revamping.
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council agreed with us at their February 2023 meeting, when they started the process of creating a new North Pacific Programmatic EIS. They tasked their Ecosystem Committee with developing the next steps of this document during their next meeting on April 4.
You can give input to the Ecosystem Committee here or by submitting a written comment here saying why we need a new fisheries management system in the North Pacific. More information about the 2004 PSEIS and the formation of a new PEIS can be found in this paper (https://meetings.npfmc.org/CommentReview/DownloadFile?p=f147c92d-d7bf-444f-a398-71393e63f96f.pdf&fileName=D2%20PSEIS%20Discussion%20Paper.pdf), as well as in the comment KRITFC, AVCP, and Ocean Conservancy submitted to the Council.
We anticipate there will be more information, meetings, and opportunities for written and verbal comment in the coming months on this issue—stay tuned.