NMFS Issues LOA Regulations for Navy Northwest Training and Testing Study Area

The U.S. national marine Fisheries Service, upon request from the U.S. Navy, has issued these regulations pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act to govern the taking of marine mammal’s incidental to the training and testing activities conducted in the Northwest Training and Testing Study Area. The Navy’s activities qualify as military readiness activities pursuant to the MMPA, as amended by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004. These regulations, which allow for the issuance of Letters of Authorization for the incidental take of marine mammals during the described activities and timeframes, prescribe the permissible methods of taking and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species and their habitat, and establish requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such takes.