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Sam Pfeifle

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Posts posted by Sam Pfeifle

  1. Hey folks in Mississippi - if you're looking for a lifeline, applications for CARES Act funding for commercial fishing opens today, November 9:

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    Applications can be found on the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) website.

    Applicants must be a Mississippi resident 18 years or older and have possessed a valid Mississippi resident commercial fishing, dealer-processor, or charter boat license during the July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, license year.

    Applicants may only apply in one category and must meet the threshold of economic revenue losses greater than 35% (as required by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) compared to the prior five-year average. If applying as a business, it must be domiciled in Mississippi and registered with the Mississippi Secretary of State.

    Participants must not be debarred, not on the government “do not pay list” and in good standing the with federal and state government. Also, participants cannot have previously been made whole by other CARES Act funds.

    Applications close Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. No late applications will be considered and there will be no appeals if the deadline is missed. Funding allocation has been structured so that all applications submitted before the deadline will be considered.

     

    For those in other states, be on the look out, or just google "CARES Act [your state] fishing"

     

  2. This year has been a bumpy ride for critics and supporters of the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska’s Bristol Bay. We’ll talk about how we got here, where the plans stand, and what to look for next.

    Speakers: 
    • Katherine Carscallen, Executive Director of Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay & Andy Wink, Bristol Bay Regional Seafood
    • Lindsay Layland, Deputy Director, United Tribes of Bristol Bay

    Moderator & Host: Jessica Hathaway, National Fisherman editor in chief

  3. The Diesel Emissions Reduction Act supports the replacement of older diesel engines with those fitting higher standards, including marine engines. Since 2008, fleets at marine and inland water ports have been a priority for funding, with $93 million going to ports projects from 2008-2013.

    While some of DERA’s overall grants have specifically addressed commercial fishing vessel engine repowers, there is immense opportunity to further collaborate with Tribes, fishing communities, fishing associations, and engine manufacturers to look to the future of clean diesel powering sustainable seafood harvesting in the United States.

    Come here to discuss how industry partnerships and federal funds can support an ongoing effort to upgrade power systems for America's commercial fishing vessels, and ensure a responsible seafood economy.

    Speaker: Brett Veerhusen, Founder, Ocean Strategies

  4. The U.S. boatbuilding industry has been running strong throughout 2020. If you're looking for what’s on the horizon for builders and outfitters of commercial fishing and workboats on the West Coast and in Alaska, just ask the folks whose job it is to pay attention.

    Speakers:
    • Dr. Sue Molloy, President, Glas Ocean Electric
    • Jonathan Parrott, Senior Naval Architect, Jensen Maritime
    • John W. Waterhouse, Principal and Chairman of the Board, Elliot Bay Design Group

    Moderator: Paul Molyneaux, National Fisherman Boats & Gear editor
    Host: Jessica Hathaway, National Fisherman editor in chief

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  5. This workshop offered businesses the opportunity to learn about regional workforce training programs and partnership opportunities - including programs that will pay for your apprenticeships and student training programs. You heard how easy it is to become a mentor, create an apprenticeship program, successfully reach out and engage communities of color and women for your workforce, and get your business involved with creating the next generation of workers. Now is your opportunity to move the discussion forward.

    Sponsors: Youth Maritime Collaborative, Port of Seattle and Seattle Propeller Club

  6. What’s the future of offshore wind power? How is the industry engaging with commercial fishing and other maritime industries in the United States? What can we learn from European installations? Our panelists dug into the current status of offshore wind energy as its focus expands to all coasts - now you can offer your thoughts and ask your questions. 

    Speakers: 
    • Bonnie Brady, Executive Director, Long Island Commercial Fishing Association
    • Mike Conroy, Executive Director, Pacific Coast Federation of Fisherman's Associations
    • Annie Hawkins, Executive Director, Responsible Offshore Development Alliance

    Moderator: Kirk Moore, National Fisherman associate editor
    Host: Jessica Hathaway, National Fisherman editor in chief

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    Love this stuff:

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    In the first decade of the 20th century commercial salmon fishing took off, partly enhanced by fish hatcheries, but primarily due to the advent of the use of the “gasoline boat”. Whereas motorized boats were uncommon in 1900, five years later they were in almost universal use.

    “The reported catch for 1899 was 461,460 pounds of salmon credited to Eel River, while in 1904 the catch was 2,664,206 pounds, an increase of nearly two and a half millions of pounds in less than five years.”(Humboldt Times, 1/13/1906). Faster travel made for more fishing trips and fresher salmon hauls. However, this technological advance was a double edge sword. As well as increasing local prosperity, gasoline boats made it possible to come up the coast from San Francisco, illegally dynamite fish, and speed away.

     

     

  8. And now CT has their act together to dole out some CARES Act money:

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    Connecticut received $1,835,424 from the CARES Act Assistance to Fishery Participants but had to submit a spending plan for approval to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    DEEP, in consultation with the state Department of Agriculture, developed a plan, the final iteration of which was submitted for review on Aug. 7 and was approved by NOAA on Oct. 9

    “All applicants must submit an application, an application affidavit, and supporting documents,” DEEP’s website reads. “All interested parties are strongly encouraged to review the Connecticut CAAFP spend plan prior to applying for CAAFP aid to determine their eligibility.”

    The deadline to apply is Oct. 30. Application packages can be emailed to CTCARES@asmfc.org or sent via mail to Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, ATTN: Laura Leach, 1050 N. Highland Street, Suite 200 A-N, Arlington, Va. 22201. Application materials can be found at bit.ly/ctfishingaid.

     

     

  9. Thought this was a pretty cool look at things being made from ocean plastic refuse. 

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    Chipolo is in the hot seat with the impending release of Apple Tags. They've been sparring with Tile for years in the "tracker" market and will soon have the heftiest of gorillas breathing down their necks. 

    That's why it's nice to see them differentiating early by releasing environmentally-friendly Bluetooth-enabled finders. The aptly-named Chipolo Ocean edition is made from reclaimed fishing nets either recovered in shallow waters or intercepted at the docks before fishermen dump their old nets in the ocean. 

     

    Though it's a little bit unfair to just put out there that fishermen are dumping old nets in the ocean as a habit, no?

  10. An interesting update this week from the Port of Seattle on covid adjustments. I though this piece was interesting:

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    As we assist our customers where possible, timely relief to tenants in the form of deferments and lease adjustments came last April.  Our rent deferral programs were open to any upland tenant or moorage customer who could demonstrate negative impact by COVID-10.  Forty seven tenants out of around 200 executed deferral agreements and 31 vessel owners out of around 2,000 (1,500 recreational, 500 small fishing, 22 large fishing) also deferred moorage.

    And they do address commercial fishing directly, with some vessel updates:

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    Lastly, on fishing, the catcher/processor fleet is still very active at Terminal 91 recapitalizing and modernizing.  We expect the new North Star (the one vessel that was damaged in a hurricane two years ago, just prior to delivery) to be arriving this fall from the Gulf.  The new Arctic Fjord is expected to arrive next year. Ocean Peace has performed a complete overhaul of a vessel it’s adding to their fleet with the new name: Bering Hope. These vessels are valued customers providing revenue to the Port during these non-cruise months.  With the fishing season largely over, aside from one large catcher-processor company that had several outbreaks early in the season, we’ve had no reports of any other cases among the North Pacific Fishing Fleet this year so far.

    Great to hear that just about everyone has been virus-free on the water.

  11. Pretty interesting story out of New York about the increasing issue of abandoned "ghost ships" in Long Island Sound and what the town of Babylon is doing about it:

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    Boats left adrift or grounded, stripped of their names and anything of value, left as junk by owners who give up on expensive upkeep.

    The town created a Wall Of Shame to track down owners, but three large commercial fishing vessels abandoned after Superstorm Sandy are still going nowhere.

    “It’s not uncommon, when a big storm is coming, people will intentionally use that storm to abandon the boat and hope that it just drifts away,” Zitani said.

     

    Should we really be using federal taxpayer funds to clean up after these people? What do we do about it?

  12. Interesting op-ed in SeafoodSource this week, talking about the potential for "precision fishing" to "save" our fisheries. Here's the gist of it:

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    SmartCatch aims to address overfishing and depleting fish supplies. For the initial phase, the company is focusing on improving analytics in the large-scale fishing industry. This is a strong first step considering the team’s backgrounds, knowledge, and connections to industrial fishing companies. SmartCatch is offering real-time analytics and an integrated ERP internet of things solution for fisheries to improve data management. In line with our investment thesis, better data and analytics are required in order to create a sustainable fishing industry and improve ocean health.

    I haven't seen a lot of data talk in commercial fishing circles. Is this just an advertisement for a technology no one will ever use or does this offer some actual useful information you could see yourself using? 

  13. A bit off topic, but it will be interesting to see how new ice-breaking technology affects the maritime industry in general. And, well, a "nuclear icebreaker" does sound sort of cool. 

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    Designed to transport liquefied natural gas from the Arctic, the vessel, dubbed by Greenpeace as the "nuclear Titanic," stretches more than 173 meters in length, measures 15 meters tall, and can break ice as thick as 3 meters.

    Moscow has stepped up its construction of icebreakers in a bid to boost freight traffic along Russia's Arctic coast, making the passage between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans navigable all year round.

    "The creation of a modern nuclear icebreaker fleet capable of ensuring regular year-round and safe navigation through the entire Northern Sea Route is a strategic task for our country," Vyacheslav Ruksha, head of Rosatom's Northern Sea Route Directorate, said in a statement.

    Will this year-round navigation open up new fishing waters as well?

  14. If you can make it to 105, you're doing something great. I love that Essie Lindeman, of Grants Pass, Oregon, was fishing in Alaska with her husband in 1936! 

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    Another interest crept into Essie’s life in the ’30s. A neighboring farm boy she “sorta liked” had left home for a commercial fishing adventure on Bristol Bay in Alaska. She was invited to a welcoming party when he returned home. A movie date followed. After a two-month courtship she married Don Duryea Nov. 20, 1935.

    A cross-country automobile trip to Seattle and a harrowing boat journey from Seattle to Alaska found the newlyweds fishing and working in a Bristol Bay cannery in March 1936.

    When Essie was seven months pregnant, she caught a cargo ship from Bristol Bay to Seattle and took the train to New York to have her first child.

     

    And I thought the commute for rural Mainers to the pregnancy ward was a long one. 

  15. Here's information for Massachusetts fishermen on how to access funds from the Covid relief program set up and funded by the federal government:

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    To be eligible to receive funds, fishermen must hold a 2020 state commercial fishing permit and have suffered at least a 35% revenue loss during March 10 to July 3 (compared to the previous five-year average) that was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    They also must document a minimum of $15,000 in fishing income in any calendar year from 2017 to 2019 and be a Massachusetts resident.

    Massachusetts’ allocation represented 9.3% of the $300 million and is the highest amount of any state other than Washington and Alaska, which each received $50 million.

     

    If you're in another state, a quick google search should uncover similar plans from your state regulatory agency. 

  16. Wow. This is crazy. Just found a story about this. Can't believe this isn't a bigger story!

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    "Three warships and two support vessels of theirs were coming and would not turn," Elliott told the Alaskan media outlet via the Vesteraalen's satellite phone. "And they came marching right through the fleet."

    The incident, which has since drawn the attention of both of Alaska's U.S. Senators, is reportedly under investigation by three different federal agencies and it has been described as "unprofessional interactions" by the Russian military.

     

     
  17. The Gloucester Times reports that the state of Massachusetts is looking to extend the fishing season in some areas, due to the Covid impact on commercial fishing. 

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    Here are the proposed measures:

    Striped bass: Beginning Sept. 1, DMF would like to add Tuesday and Thursday fishing to the current calendar, which would allow a four-day fishing week of Monday through Thursday. On Oct. 2, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays will be added to create a seven-day fishing week.

    Black sea bass: Beginning Aug. 31, DMF would add Mondays and Wednesdays to the commercial fishery to bring it to a full five-day fishing week of Sunday through Thursday. On Oct. 2, Fridays and Saturdays would be added to comprise a seven-day fishing week.

    Additionally, DMF wants to increase the daily trip limit for pot fishermen to 500 pounds from the current 400 pounds. The increase would go into effect Aug. 30.

    Summer flounder: DMF wants to increase the commercial summer flounder trip limit for trawlers to 600 pounds from the current 400 pounds, effective Aug. 23. On Oct. 4, DMF wants to increase the commercial summer flounder trip limit to 1,000 pounds and eliminate the closed fishing days of Fridays and Saturdays to create a seven-day fishing week.

     

    It will be interesting to see if other states follow suit and whether we see season extensions in other areas. 

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