Input sought on study of Peninsula fish hatcheries management plan

Peninsula Daily News

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Division is taking public comment on a draft environmental impact statement on plans for fish hatchery management.

The plans will affect the North Olympic Peninsula hatcheries on the Dosewallips, Duckabush, Dungeness, Elwha and Hamma Hamma rivers.

The draft environmental impact statement will be posted this week on the NOAA website at http://tinyurl.com/PDN-NOAAEIS.

NOAA Fisheries will accept public comments on the statement from July 25 through Oct. 23.

The statement studies plans developed over the past decade for managing salmon and steelhead hatcheries along Puget Sound.

A pair of resource management plans that would set guidelines for operations at 133 hatcheries along Puget Sound were drafted by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Puget Sound Treaty Tribes, and were reviewed by NOAA, the agency said Tuesday.

The plans have been in the works since the summer of 2004.

One plan governs hatcheries that produce Puget Sound chinook, while the other addresses programs producing Puget Sound coho, pink, chum and sockeye salmon, as well as steelhead.

NOAA will study the plans through the draft environmental impact statement to determine their potential effects on Endangered Species Act-listed and non-listed fish and wildlife species, their habitats, water quality and quantity, socioeconomics and environmental justice, an agency news release said Wednesday.

The agency said it plans to conduct public workshops on the statement in Port Townsend, Mount Vernon, Seattle and Olympia.

The schedule and location for the workshops will be posted on the NOAA Fisheries website soon, the release said.

Last modified: July 16. 2014 5:52PM
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