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1 Sections 10 and 404: NMFS’ Oversight, Concerns and Actions Lisa Abernathy

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Presentation on theme: "1 Sections 10 and 404: NMFS’ Oversight, Concerns and Actions Lisa Abernathy"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Sections 10 and 404: NMFS’ Oversight, Concerns and Actions Lisa Abernathy Lisa.Abernathy@noaa.gov

2 2 Who we are: National Marine Fisheries Service NOAA Aquaculture Program International Affairs Law Enforcement Office of Management and Budget Office of Policy Seafood Inspection Program Sustainable Fisheries Division Science and Technology Division Protected Resources Division Habitat Conservation Division

3 3 Habitat Conservation Division: The NOAA Fisheries Office of Habitat Conservation protects, restores, and promotes stewardship of coastal and marine habitat to support our nation's fisheries for future generations. Our vision is a healthy and sustainable habitat that provides a range of benefits for abundant fish and wildlife, commercial and recreational opportunities, and resilient coastal communities that can withstand hurricanes, flooding, and other threats.

4 4 Essential Fish Habitat: “those waters and substrates necessary to fish for spawning, breeding, or growth to maturity”

5 5 Major portions of coastal Louisiana are categorized as EFH, including all offshore waters

6 6 Most commercially and recreationally important fisheries are estuarine and wetlands dependent Brown shrimp, white shrimp and red drum are federally managed species commonly found in most tidal wetlands in Louisiana, during some life stage

7 7 Other federally managed species include: Various snapper species Groupers and mackerels Some shark species Highly migratory fishery species such as tunas, swordfish and sailfish

8 8 Why are we involved? Rivers and Harbors Act Clean Water Act Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act

9 9 Regulatory program interactions COE – Rivers and Harbors Act, Clean Water Act activities, permitting for wetland restoration projects, etc. FERC – interstate transmission pipelines, onshore natural gas terminals, alternative energy actions, etc. USCG – navigation issues with bridges, offshore natural gas terminals, etc. FEMA – repairs from past hurricanes, debris removal, etc. BOEMRE – (Formally MMS) sand mining and petroleum exploration activities in OCS waters, etc. LADOTD – roadways, bridges, etc. LDNR – CZM program

10 10 Types of projects comment on most 1.Oil and gas activities – new canals/slips, pipelines 2.Camps not on least damaging configurations 3.Residential development 4.Marsh management activities (water control structures, levees, etc.) 5.Flood protection efforts

11 11 EFH Consultation: Action agency responsibilities Evaluate the impact of the proposed actions on EFH Avoid, minimize and mitigate Initiate coordination with NMFS when the evaluation suggests an adverse impact is likely

12 12 EFH Consultation: NMFS Responsibilities NOAA Fisheries reviews the Joint Public Notice, General Permits, Environmental Assessments, some State only Public Notices, etc. NMFS uses existing processes to fulfill coordination requirements whenever possible – we have “findings” with several agencies describing coordination processes If adverse impacts to EFH are likely, NOAA Fisheries required by MSFCMA to submit EFH Conservation Recommendations to the Corps of Engineers or other action agency The Corps of Engineers et al. must respond in writing to EFH Conservation Recommendations to conclude consultation

13 13 Permit Review – What we need Clear statement of purpose and need Legible maps Complete drawings of project features with accurate dimensions Location of project footprint in relation to wetlands Elevations of existing and created features relative to a datum ( NGVD or NAVD88 ) Mitigation for adverse impacts ( 2008 COE/EPA guidelines ) A little realism would be nice

14 14

15 15 What are we looking for? Pre-application coordination on complex projects Less damaging opportunities Evaluation of offsite alternatives Monitoring of project impacts Compliance with regulations Adequate compensatory mitigation

16 16 Types of compensatory mitigation Marsh creation/terracing Vegetative planting Mitigation banks In-lieu fee payment to Louisiana wetland mitigation trust fund

17 17 Thank you! National Marine Fisheries Service Habitat conservation Division c/o Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, Louisiana (225)-389-0508


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