Commercial fishing can be a uniquely rewarding line of work. Being out at sea and catching your livelihood offers a simplicity that many find fulfilling. Of course, it is also a difficult profession, one which requires long hours in sometimes treacherous conditions. Still, to earn your living from the environment is an age-old practice, and in order to ensure that such a career exists for future generations, it is a must that you do your part to protect our fisheries. This mindset was a factor in establishing Amendment 80 for Alaskan commercial fishing operators, and if you are working in this region, you are going to want to make sure that you are knowledgeable about this change.
In many ways, Alaska offers an ideal environment for commercial fishing operations. With a number of valuable species native to its waters and a large, expansive coastline, Alaska is actually granted its own region by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). As the NOAA is tasked with issuing species-specific permits, this agency played a pivotal role in designing Amendment 80.
What Is Amendment 80?
At a fundamental level, Amendment 80 was crafted to serve those who fish in the Bering Sea and the Aleutian Islands. More specifically, it allows for the creation of harvesting cooperatives in the non-American Fisheries Act (AFA) trawl processing sector. It also allocated several non-pollock trawl groundfish species to various trawl fishery sectors. These species include Atka mackerel, Pacific cod, rock sole, and more.
The goals of Amendment 80 were multiple, but one of the primary focuses was to allocate fishery resources in accordance with present and historic harvest patterns. It also aimed to reduce compliance costs and discards, while also increasing the value of harvested fish. While the intentions of Amendment 80 aimed to protect our fisheries, it did create cause for additional paperwork for commercial fishermen.
Obtaining Your Limited Access Permit
If you are fishing in the Bering Sea or the Aleutian Islands, you may need to acquire some Amendment 80 documentation–-especially if you are trawling for the allocated species types. More specifically, you will need an Amendment 80 Limited Access Permit. You can obtain this by filling out the necessary NOAA application for processing. One avenue in which you can do this is to visit the NOAA’s website, locate the correct PDF, print it out, complete it by hand, and bring it to your nearest post office.
Of course, there is also a simpler way. By working with us at the Commercial Fishing Permits Center, you can save yourself valuable time and energy. We utilize easy-to-complete online forms for this and all of your other commercial fishing permit needs. We also use an SSL-encrypted web portal, so you can rest easy knowing that your personal data will be securely transmitted.
If NOAA permits are not required for your business, we also provide state-level licenses. Simply browse our streamlined navigation and you can locate the right online application for you. If you would like to learn more, visit our Frequently Asked Questions page, or contact us by phone or email today.