NMFS Proposes IHAs that Violate Executive Order on Offshore Energy Strategy

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service has proposed issuance of two Incidental Harassment Authorizations that use NMFS’ new Acoustic Guidance, in violation of Section 10 of President Trump’s Executive Order Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy.

NMFS proposes to issue both these IHAs under the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act. The first IHA would authorize the U.S. Air Force 86 Fighter Weapons Squadron to take marine mammals incidental to Long Range Strike Weapons System Evaluation Program activities in the Barking Sands Underwater Range Expansion area of the Pacific Missile Range Facility off Kauai, Hawaii, for the period of August 23, 2017, through August 22, 2022.  NMFS must receive any comments on this proposed IHA no later than June 5, 2017. Click here to read more about this proposed Air Force IHA.

The second proposed IHA would authorize Ocean Wind, LLC to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to high-resolution geophysical and geotechnical survey investigations associated with marine site characterization activities off the coast of New Jersey in the area of the Commercial Lease of Submerged Lands for Renewable Energy Development on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS–A 0498). NMFS must receive any comments and information no later than June 2, 2017. Click here to read more about this IHA.

President Trump’s Offshore Energy Strategy Executive Order is available here.

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