(a) Bycatch reduction engineering program
Not later than 1 year after January 12, 2007, the Secretary, in cooperation with the Councils and other affected interests, and based upon the best scientific information available, shall establish a bycatch reduction program, including grants, to develop technological devices and other conservation engineering changes designed to minimize bycatch, seabird interactions, bycatch mortality, and post-release mortality in Federally managed fisheries. The program shall—
(1) be regionally based;
(2) be coordinated with projects conducted under the cooperative research and management program established under this chapter;
(3) provide information and outreach to fishery participants that will encourage adoption and use of technologies developed under the program; and
(4) provide for routine consultation with the Councils in order to maximize opportunities to incorporate results of the program in Council actions and provide incentives for adoption of methods developed under the program in fishery management plans developed by the Councils.
Any fishery management plan prepared by a Council or by the Secretary may establish a system of incentives to reduce total bycatch and seabird interactions, amounts, bycatch rates, and post-release mortality in fisheries under the Council's or Secretary's jurisdiction, including—
(1) measures to incorporate bycatch into quotas, including the establishment of collective or individual bycatch quotas;
(2) measures to promote the use of gear with verifiable and monitored low bycatch and seabird interactions, rates; and
(3) measures that, based on the best scientific information available, will reduce bycatch and seabird interactions, bycatch mortality, post-release mortality, or regulatory discards in the fishery.
(c) Coordination on seabird interactions
The Secretary, in coordination with the Secretary of 1 Interior, is authorized to undertake projects in cooperation with industry to improve information and technology to reduce seabird bycatch, including—
(1) outreach to industry on new technologies and methods;
(2) projects to mitigate for seabird mortality; and
(3) actions at appropriate international fishery organizations to reduce seabird interactions in fisheries.
The Secretary shall transmit an annual report to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the House of Representatives Committee on Resources that—
(1) describes funding provided to implement this section;
(2) describes developments in gear technology achieved under this section; and
(3) describes improvements and reduction in bycatch and seabird interactions associated with implementing this section, as well as proposals to address remaining bycatch or seabird interaction problems.
References in Text
This chapter, referred to in subsec. (a)(2), was in the original "this Act", meaning Pub. L. 94–265, Apr. 13, 1976, 90 Stat. 331, as amended, known as the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, which is classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1801 of this title and Tables.
Change of Name
Committee on Resources of House of Representatives changed to Committee on Natural Resources of House of Representatives by House Resolution No. 6, One Hundred Tenth Congress, Jan. 5, 2007.
Improving Discard Mortality Data
Pub. L. 116–340, §4, Jan. 13, 2021, 134 Stat. 5129, provided that:
"(1) assessment of gaps and biases in reporting of discards and associated discard mortality;
"(2) assessment of uncertainty and likely impacts of such uncertainty in discard mortality;
"(3) assessment of the effectiveness and usage rates of barotrauma-reducing devices;
"(4) recommendations for future research priorities; and
"(5) recommendations for standardized reporting and quantification of discards in the same metric as landings for fisheries under the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Fishery Management Plan.
"(1) guidance for minimum standards for quantifying and reporting discards and associated mortality in the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Fishery Management Plan; and
"(2) a plan to assess and monitor the effectiveness and usage of barotrauma-reducing devices and the impact on discard mortality rates in Gulf of Mexico reef fish fisheries.