Thursday, September 20, 2012

NOAA's Secret Science

 NOAA locking the files on the science it uses must be the kind of thing we need to help send us over the fiscal cliff, so we can learn something? Shades of the world of the Western Alaska Native. Their CDQ groups have been doing this to them for 20 years, pissing away the cash in an orgy of spending. In NOAA's case, it's giving public marine resources to favored patrons for nothing. The other half of our double benefit is, drumroll please: destroying the marine ecosystem. If you haven't lived where this goes on, don't automatically disbelieve this.

If you have a passion for the marine environment, along with the land and air ones too maybe, or make a living from the sea, or live in a town by the sea, this stuff about NOAA should be extremely important to you. Like I said before, I know at least one Alaska mayor who is trying to find out why the seafood industry is going to pot. This is what is going on. I wonder how many marine ecology/management professors keep up on this kind of thing. They should, so students can see what kind of 'science' field they are getting into. The NOAA led 'science' of fisheries management is taking it's cue from W.C. Fields, the famous comedian whose motto was, "Never give a sucker an even break."

This kind of thing was certainly going on as far back as Alaska's territorial days and the Washington D.C. sanctioned salmon traps, in case anyone is tempted to blame Obama for it.

From: Patrice McDermott <>
Date: Tue, Sep 18, 2012 at 10:53 AM
Subject: sign-on opportunity -- public access to info essential for marine fisheries management

Attached please find a letter about the National Marine Fisheries Service’s (NMFS) proposed rule regarding confidentiality of information under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA).  The proposed rule would improperly restrict public access to many types of fishery data central to the public’s ability to understand the management and performance of fisheries, including information generated from tax payer-funded science. As drafted, the proposal undermines the MSA’s public participation requirements, and is inconsistent with federal policies on scientific integrity, transparency and openness in government. The implications of this rule are significant for maintaining transparency in management decisions and providing a level playing field among managers, non-governmental scientists and the general public. The letter urges NMFS to withdraw this flawed proposal entirely and replace it with one that ensures public access to fisheries information.

To sign on to the letter – with your name & organizational affiliationreply to Joseph Gordon by 7pm EST October 16th.

Every year, millions of taxpayer dollars are invested in fisheries management including the collection of data by professional observers on fishing vessels. These observers collect data about what fish are caught, where, and how fishing damages other ocean wildlife. This information is essential for citizens to understand the impacts of fishing on our public trust resources, and to meaningfully participate in fishery management to help ensure the effective conservation of ocean fish, wildlife, and ecosystems.

Specifically, this proposed rule opens the door to:
§  Requiring the public to ask permission from private fishing permit holders who have a direct financial stake to access essential information about fishing and its impacts on ocean wildlife, even when the data collection is funded by taxpayers at $40 million per year.
§  Potentially providing information to the public in an “aggregated form” that could disguise specific impacts of fishing on our public trust resources. The proposed rule essentially asks us to accept that the government will develop procedures for making the information public in a useful form. The proposal does not describe how data will be aggregated -- Americans have a right to know how NOAA Fisheries proposes to do this and whether NOAA Fisheries’ procedures will enable the public to fully understand and participate in protecting our ocean resources.

NOAA’s proposed fisheries data rule would significantly restrict the public’s access to fisheries data, including publicly-funded observer programs. The proposal would undermine the extensive public participation envisioned in America’s ocean fishing law, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), and could erode scientific integrity, transparency, and openness in government.

Please excuse duplicate postings.  Please feel free to share this post – including to whom to reply for sign-on.



Patrice McDermott, Executive Director