The Cordova Times —
Nineteen U.S. senators, led by Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, are asking NOAA Fisheries to resume research surveys in 2021. They say the work essential for commercial and recreational fisheries management.
Federal fisheries officials cancelled these surveys beginning in May to protect of those involved from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Murkowski said she understands the decision to cancel the surveys this year, but it is critical for NOAA to prepare for a safe and successful 2021 field season.
“We cannot lose another year of critical data to this pandemic,” she said.
The senators said that fishery and ecosystem research surveys are essential to support the nation’s blue economy and provide needed data to carry out provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.