MBNMS SAC Meeting Minutes August 4, 2000
BAY NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
August 4, 2000
Cambria Pines Lodge
The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (MBNMS) Advisory Council met on Friday, August 4, 2000, at the Cambria Pines Lodge in Cambria, California. Public categories and government agencies were present as indicated:
Agriculture: Richard Nutter
Diving: David Clayton
AMBAG: Stephanie Harlan
Education: Pat Clark-Gray
At Large: Steve Webster
Enforcement: Doug Huckins
At Large: Karin Strasser Kauffman
Fishing: Dave Danbom
At Large: William Raver (Alternate)
Ports & Harbors: James Stilwell
Business & Industry: Ted Balestreri (Alternate)
Recreation: Sally Smith
CA Coastal Commission: Tami Grove
Research: Gregor Cailliet
CA EPA: Craig J. Wilson
Tourism: Ed Brown
CA Resources Agency: Brian Baird - ABSENT
U.S. Coast Guard: LT Tom Stuhlreyer
Conservation: Vicki Nichols
The following non-voting members were present as indicated:
Elkhorn Slough NERR: Becky Christensen - ABSENT
Gulf of the Farallones NMS and Cordell Bank NMS: Ed Ueber - ABSENT
Channel Islands NMS: LCDR Matt Pickett
Monterey Bay NMS: William J. Douros
I. CALL TO ORDER, ROLL CALL, APPROVAL OF June 2, 2000 DRAFT MEETING MINUTES
A) Call to Order and Roll Call
The meeting was called to order by the Chair, Stephanie Harlan, at 9:00 a.m. Ed Brown conducted the roll call - a quorum was present.
B) Approval of Meeting Minutes
MOTION: The SAC unanimously adopted the minutes from the June 2, 2000 Sanctuary Advisory Council meeting, with the following changes:
- correct spelling of Nick Papadakis
- correct the motions to reflect that the impetus & action came from the SAC
- clarification: section from Donna Blitzer. The proposal to fund water quality initiatives has passed the house but not the senate. Individuals can write in support of this bill to Sen. Feinstein and copy Rep. Farr.
II. COUNCIL MEMBER & STAFF ANNOUNCEMENTS
On behalf of the SAC, Stephanie Harlan sent Lisa DeMarignac a bouquet of flowers as a thank you and going away present.
Stephanie Harlan displayed a new brochure entitled "50 Ways to Get Your Feet Wet in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary - Santa Cruz County." The brochure was created by the Santa Cruz County Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Task Force, and will be distributed throughout Santa Cruz County.
Jim Stilwell mentioned there would be military amphibious landing exercises at Moss Landing Beach during August 5 & 6.
Karin Strasser Kauffman has contacted the Pew Oceans Commission about inviting Leon Panetta to a SAC meeting to provide an update on their activities. Mr. Panetta was not available for this SAC meeting, but Karin suggested either having him attend the October meeting or a separate meeting with interested SAC members.
Doug Huckins summarized a ceremony they had in Monterey to commission a new 58-foot aluminum hulled vessel. The boat will be based at Dana Point in S. California. Two other boats will be built, and one will be based on the central California Coast.
Dave Clayton reported on the very successful Monterey Harbor dive clean-up and BBQ on Saturday, July 22. About 120 divers participated in an underwater clean-up in the vicinity of Commercial Wharf II. Some items recovered included: bath tub, stereo equipment, fishing gear, toilet, tires, bottles, and lots of junk. Thousands of pounds of garbage were collected by divers. They also noticed from 50-70 sharks lying dead under the pier. The next clean-up in Monterey will be in January.
Jim Stilwell announced that Moss Landing Harbor has installed a new bilge water pump out facility at the maintenance dock. This facility pumps out bilge water, filters out the oil, and returns the water back to the harbor. It has a capacity of 1,000 gallons and can process the waste at 10 gallons/minute. At the end of August, the harbor will have an oil skimmer on hand at the harbor. The oil recovered can be processed at the same bilge pump-out facility.
III. PUBLIC COMMENT ON ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA
Ruth Vreeland, AMBAG/City of Monterey, (SAC Alternate): Congratulates the City of Capitola for joining Urban Watch, a community driven water quality monitoring program. The program was developed in cooperation with the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary's Water Quality Protection Program and Santa Cruz-based Coastal Watershed Council. As an alternate to the SAC, Ms. Vreeland, would like the sanctuary manager and chair to consider inviting alternates to the next SAC retreat.
Bill Warren, Cambria Resident: The residents at the southern end of coastal San Luis Obispo County, would like the MBNMS to consider expanding its boundary south to the bottom of the county. There is much public support for such an inclusion in the Sanctuary.
IV. DISCUSSION & ACTION: SECOND RELEASE OF THE MBNMS KELP MANAGEMENT REPORT
Aaron King, MBNMS Marine Scientist, provided a brief synopsis of the public comments received on the MBNMS Kelp Management Report. A more detailed summary was provided in a hand-out Aaron prepared entitled "Draft Kelp Recommendations, Summary of Public Comments Received to Date." The public comment period is open until Monday, August 7. After this period the Sanctuary will review all the comments received to date, including input from the SAC and its working groups, and provide its recommendations the California Fish & Game by late August.
Timeline for submitting these recommendations to the California Dept. of Fish and Game:
August 7, 2000: Close comment period on Draft MBNMS Kelp Management Report: Background, Environmental Setting and Draft Recommendations.
August 7 - Late August, 2000: Writing Final MBNMS Kelp Management Report, including Final Management Recommendations for the MBNMS.
Late August, 2000: Release of Final MBNMS Kelp Management Report, and delivery to the DFG.
Late August - Late November, 2000: Staff discussions with DFG on issues of concern raised in the MBNMS Kelp Management Report (DFG finishes writing Draft California Kelp Management Plan for 2001-2005).
Late August, 2000: DFG publicly releases draft California Kelp Management Plan that contains proposed solutions to issues of concern to the MBNMS.
December, 2000: DFG submits final California Kelp Management Plan to FGC for review and approval.
The report contained nine specific recommendations.
Draft Recommendation #1: The MBNMS recommends that DFG's CEQA document fully analyze the State's costs in managing kelp harvesting, including monitoring and enforcement, and that these costs should reflect revenues generated from various fees collected from the kelp harvesting industry (e.g., license fees, business and personal taxes, tonnage fees).
Draft Recommendation #2: The MBNMS recommends that California designate two no-kelp harvest areas along the Cannery Row area of the Monterey city coastline (DFG Bed #220). The first no-kelp harvest area should be from the Monterey Coast Guard Breakwater, and out 500 feet to the north. The second area should be to the 100 ft. depth contour from the low tide mark between Prescott and Drake Avenues.
Draft Recommendation #3: The MBNMS recommends that, without a special FGC approved permit, kelp harvesting north of, and including, DFG Kelp Bed #219 be exclusively by hand-harvesting (i.e., no mechanical harvesting).
Draft Recommendation #4: The MBNMS recommends that the FGC allow the Monterey Kelp Cooperative to be the exclusive commercial harvester of DFG Kelp Bed #220, and that harvest from that bed be exclusively for the abalone mariculture businesses presently represented in the Cooperative. However, the MBNMS believes that persons or businesses in possession of herring roe permits should be exempted from this prohibition provided their harvests are done "by hand" for the herring roe-on-kelp fishery.
Draft Recommendation #5: The MBNMS recommends that no hand harvesting of Nereocystis be allowed in the MBNMS
Draft Recommendation #6: The MBNMS recommends that DFG/FGC restrict harvest of any kelp bed to 50% of that bed's total maximum canopy cover per year, as determined from the overflight dataset collected by resource management agencies.
Draft Recommendation #7: The MBNMS recommends that all parties interested in kelp use issues in DFG Kelp Bed #220 join in a discussion about the pros and cons of a kelp enhancement project.
Draft Recommendation #8: The MBNMS recommends that California keep all kelp harvest data per bed (leased or open) available to the public on an ongoing basis, and in a timely fashion.
Draft Recommendation #9: The MBNMS recommends that kelp beds in the MBNMS and north of Año Nuevo Island (DFG Beds #224, 225, 226 and 301) be closed to commercial harvesting.
Aaron opened up the floor for questions from SAC members and the public on the Kelp Management Report.
Doug Huckins: Would closing all the beds to commercial harvest north of Santa Cruz impact the Herring Row Fishery in San Francisco Bay? Answer: No since most of the kelp harvested in the Cannery Row area is Marcocystis. Doug was asked if enforcement officers could tell the difference between Marcocystis and Nereocystis. He responded it would be difficult.
Greg Cailliet: The Sanctuary estimates that in total 102 people attended the public meetings. Of these 102 people, there were many people who attended several meetings. So the actual number of people attending these meeting is less than 100 -- maybe this issue is not big in the public eye.
Jim Stilwell: Does the aerial survey methodology take into consideration tide and turbidity? Answer: yes, many different factors are considered including ocean and atmosphere conditions. Jim also indicated his preference for one no-take area versus two. It should extend to 60' not 100' to make passage in and out of the harbor safer. Concerns about compressing users into limited areas. Jim supports the Kelp Cooperative limited entry proposal but ask that they don't sell kelp from cannery row to users outside the area. The kelp enhancement project is a good idea and the City of Monterey could help.
Questions & Comments from the Public:
How would the Sanctuary determine 50% of a kelp bed's total maximum canopy cover per year? Sanctuary should identify beds of special concern, where there is suspected a problem of overharvest instead of closing off all beds.
Steve Scheiblauer: How do you convert aerial surveys to tonnage --can it be done? Does it factor in interannual variability? Answer. CFG has a formula to convert the area to tonnage.
Dave Ebert: Recommendations 2,3,4,6 & 9 all restrict harvest and will put more pressure on those areas that are open. Areas north of Santa Cruz are not accessible by small boat (hand harvesters) but could be by a small mechanical harvester. The effect of closing down harvest north of Santa Cruz and from Pt. Pinos to Cypress Point is to concentrate users in the Santa Cruz and Cannery Row area. Dave wants to make sure the harvesters are able to harvest drift Nereocystis in the winter. There is already an experimental no-take area in Cannery Row -- give it a chance to work and wait for the data before expanding the areas. Opposes kelp enhancement test project. Dave provided comments on all nine recommendations.
Gary Russell: Gary provided comments on all nine recommendations. Believes we should allow the Kelp Cooperative a chance to work. Wait for the results of the existing no-take study area before closing down more areas. Concern that restrictions of harvest will only focus harvesters in concentrated areas. Ensure ability of harvesters to continue to collect drift kelp. The 50% harvest rule will be difficult to implement & enforce. Favors kelp enhancement project.
Ray Fields: Kelp harvester from Morro Bay that uses a 50' mechanical harvester. Kelp has been managed by CFG for a long time. Currently the level of harvest is 1/10th of what it was in 1982. There were 11 harvesters in 1992, and now there are 3 in the Sanctuary. This is primarily a user conflict with kelp harvesting in Cannery Row. Make sure this is what we are addressing and not harvest in the entire Sanctuary where it is not a problem. Ray provided comments on all nine recommendations. He has a need to harvest in Carmel Bay during El Niño years and thus opposed limit to mechanical harvest in that area. If you restrict harvest in the Sanctuary to hand harvesting, you are forcing the harvesters to go into Cannery Row (can't take boats outside of bay). There is no scientific evidence to support that mechanical harvest is more damaging to kelp than hand harvesting or that Nereocystis cannot sustain harvest.
Art Seavey: Supported what others have said. There is already a no-take area set aside for a scientific study in Cannery Row and no need for another one, at least until the results are in. Doesn't favor or oppose the Kelp Cooperative proposal. During the winter, he wants ability to harvest drift Nereocystis. The 50% harvest rule will be too difficult to assess and implement. Supports a kelp enhancement project.
Steve Shimek: Research has shown an impact on kelp only in cases of repeated and concentrated harvest, not in cases of occasional harvests. The more you restrict harvest to certain areas, the more you subject limited areas to repeated harvest and the more damaging it will be for the forest. There is no research that has shown that otters are impacted from kelp harvest. However, otters can be disturbed from people on water (kayakers, divers, harvester, etc.). We should not get bogged down in mechanical versus hand harvesting -- it is an issue of sustainability. Doesn't favor the establishment of a kelp enhancement project or additional closed areas. Spread out the impact of harvesting and don't concentrate it.
Dale Glantz: kelp is a well-managed fishery base on time-proven and scientifically sound regulations. Supports monitoring and enforcing existing regulations. Dale provided comments on all nine recommendations. The 50% rule won't work in S. California where there are 2-3 cycles of kelp growth. By expanded the no-take areas you are concentrating the harvest in smaller areas. The Kelp Coop. would completely eliminate them from harvesting in Carmel Bay -- opposed.
Summary of SAC Actions on Kelp Management Report:
Draft Recommendation #1:
SAC members discussed the intent of this recommendation. There was one motion to use the language in recommendation #1 but strike CEQA and insert management plan. An amended motion was offered by a SAC member to replace the first motion to better clarify the intent of the recommendation. This motion was voted on by the SAC and approved.
AMENDED MOTION: PASSED (14 favor, 4 oppose, 0 abstain)
MBNMS recommends that DFG's Management Plan fully document and analyze
the State's costs in managing kelp harvesting, including research, monitoring
and enforcement, and evaluate the extent to which the revenues generated
from various fees collected from the kelp harvesting industry (e.g.,
license fees, business and personal taxes, tonnage fees) cover these
Draft Recommendation #2:
The SAC spent considerable time discussing the original recommendation establishing two no take areas off Cannery Row. SAC members discussed the need, purpose, and extent of area. The SAC was able to reach consensus that should be only one area to avoid confusion, but couldn't reach agreement on the boundaries. There was a motion made by Jim Stilwell to recommend that there be a single no-harvest area, from the breakwater to Drake Avenue out to a depth of 60'. Dave Clayton introduced a substitute motion to recommend the establishment of a single no take area from the breakwater to the left wall of the El Torito Restaurant. The motion failed (11 opposed, 4 favor). There was vigorous discussion on no-take areas. Jim's reintroduced his motion for a single no-harvest area, from the breakwater to Drake Avenue, which did not pass (7 favor, 7 opposed, 1 abstain). After more discussion, Tami Grove introduced a new substitute motion. The SAC finally voted on a compromised motion introduced by Vicki Nichols which was approved.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: PASSED (13 favor, 4 oppose, 1 abstain)
MBNMS recommends that California designate a single no-kelp harvest
area from the Monterey Coast Guard Breakwater to the north wall of the
current location of the Charthouse Restaurant, extending from the low-tide
mark to a depth of 60 feet. The no harvest area would be in place for
5 years, during which it would be monitored for its effectiveness, and
re-evaluated during the next 5-year Kelp management plan revision.
Draft Recommendation #3:
There was much discussion among the SAC members about the need and impact of such a recommendation. Some members indicated that there is no research to indicate that mechanical harvesting is more harmful to kelp forests than hand harvesting. Others had concern that this recommendation would tend to focus the hand harvesters in concentrated areas where there are already conflicts. Some also thought it would cause the hand harvesters to go further offshore to harvest kelp and put them at a greater safety risk. Issues of public perception with kelp management and the sanctuary should be addressed through education, not prohibitions. Jim Stilwell made a motion, which passed, that the Sanctuary not include this recommendation to CFG.
MOTION: PASSED (11 favor, 3 oppose, 4 abstain)
The Sanctuary should not include draft recommendation #3 (below):
recommends that, without a special FGC approved permit, kelp harvesting
north of, and including, DFG Kelp Bed #219 be exclusively by hand-harvesting
(i.e., no mechanical harvesting).
Draft Recommendation #4:
Many SAC members were uncomfortable naming one entity, the Monterey Kelp Cooperative, as the exclusive harvester of bed #220. There were questions of its legality and whether the DFG could actually implement such a limited entry scheme. Aaron responded that CFG does have the authority to implement such a scheme, and it would involve additional public meetings. Several examples of other limited entry fisheries were discussed. Bill Raver introduced the following motion, which passed:
MOTION: PASSED (11 favor, 2 oppose, 4 abstain)
MBNMS recommends that the DFG implement a system of limited entry for
kelp harvesting in DFG Kelp Bed #220.
Draft Recommendation #5:
There was discussion about modifying the recommendation to allow the collection of drift kelp. One motion was made to substitute the word "attached" before Nereocystis. However, Doug Huckins assured the SAC that they could only enforce a total ban on the cutting of Nereocystis. Some SAC members indicated there was no scientific evidence to indicate that Nereocystis could not support harvest and thus a total ban was unnecessary. Jim Stilwell made a motion, which passed, that the Sanctuary not include this recommendation to CFG.
MOTION: PASSED (10 favor, 2 oppose, 5 abstain)
The Sanctuary should not include draft recommendation #5 (below):
recommends that no hand harvesting of Nereocystis be allowed in the
Draft Recommendation #6:
The SAC discussed how the resource management agencies would survey individual kelp bed canopies and set numerical limits. Several SAC members thought there were too many variables in coming up with the 50% number and that it was a "statistical can of worms." Gregor Cailliet made a motion that the SAC take no position, (i.e., let the Sanctuary and CFG decide). The motion passed.
MOTION: PASSED (9 favor, 4 oppose, 4 abstain)
SAC takes no position to either endorse or reject draft recommendation
#6 (no position).
Draft Recommendation #7:
There was much discussion over the merits of a kelp enhancement project. Some SAC members saw this type of project in similar lines to the creation of an artificial reef (since hard substrate would need to be brought placed on the bottom). Others saw this as a real potential to alleviate user conflicts in Cannery Row. Overall, the SAC thinks this, as artificial reefs in general, would be a healthy topic for future and more in-depth discussion. Some SAC members said it was unnecessary since the kelp forests do not need enhancing. Gregor Cailliet made a motion that the SAC take no position, (i.e., let the Sanctuary and CFG decide). The motion passed. Vicki Nichols introduced a substitute motion to say they did not support, but the SAC already voted not to endorse or reject the recommendation.
MOTION: PASSED (9 favor, 3 opposed, 5 abstain)
SAC takes no position to either endorse or reject draft recommendation
#7 (no position).
Draft Recommendation #8:
Gregor Cailliet made a motion to approve the recommendation. There was discussion on whether this recommendation was needed since most of the information can be obtained. Members discussed, and agreed, there is a need to have a more a systematic and consistent database accessible to the public. An amended motion was introduced to clarify the intent, which unanimously passed.
AMENDED MOTION: PASSED (17 favor, 0 opposed, 0 abstain)
MBNMS recommends that CFG institute a more systematic method to collect,
analyze, and publish useful data on kelp harvesting.
Draft Recommendation #9:
There was little discussion on this recommendation, as it involved similar issues with some of the other recommendations. Overall, the SAC felt there was not enough scientific information to indicate the commercial harvesting Nereocystis is harmful. Gregor Cailliet made a motion, which passed, that the Sanctuary not include this recommendation to CFG.
AMENDED MOTION: PASSED (10 favor, 3 opposed, 4 abstain)
The Sanctuary should not include draft recommendation #9 (below):
recommends that kelp beds in the MBNMS and north of Año Nuevo
Island (DFG Beds #224, 225, 226 and 301) be closed to commercial harvesting.
NEW Recommendation #10
Vicki Nichols introduced a motion to include a new recommendation relating to assessing the adequacy of existing monitoring and enforcement efforts. The SAC unanimously agreed and asked that staff make this their first recommendation to DFG.
MOTION: PASSED (17 favor, 0 opposed, 0 abstain)
recommends that the DFG ensure its kelp management plan review evaluates
the adequacy of current monitoring and enforcement of kelp harvesting
activities, and strengthen them where necessary.
NEW Recommendation #11
Tami Grove introduced a motion to include a recommendation that addressed the need for public education on kelp forest management issues. The SAC unanimously agreed.
MOTION: PASSED (16 favor, 0 opposed, 0 abstain)
recommends that the DFG implement an education program on the kelp forest
ecosystem sustainability for a variety of audiences, including kelp
harvesters and the general public.
V. PRESENTATION OF ITEMS IMPORTANT TO CAMBRIA
Cambria Desalination Project
Don Villeneuve, a member of the Board of Directors for the Cambria Community Services District provided the SAC with an overview of the desalination project in Cambria. There is a 25-member citizens advisory board that approved the concept to go forward with project. Timeline:
- Public ballot on Aug. 28 on whether to go forward with the project
- If public supports, they will prepare a detailed project design and EIS
- Acquire proper permits
- Finalize project design
- Begin construction in 2003
A desal project is needed in Cambria because there is not enough water to meet present demands nor for the future. The greatest demand is during the dry months when a lot of visitors come to Cambria. The underground aquifers, recharged by seasonal rains, regularly deplete. Goal of project is to 1) augment water supplies for Cambria to meet existing and near-term obligations for consumption, 2) help protect wildlife in stream, & 3) have water for fire protection.
Don described the desalination project for Cambria and went over the design, focusing on the intake and discharge areas. This design was included in a newsletter he distributed at the meeting.
Live Rock Fishery Update
Aaron King provided a hand-out summarizing the status of the live rock fishery. The SAC had previously had updates in August and October 1998. Since that time, California's Marine Life Management Act (MLMA) was enacted which directed the State to take many actions that affect the live fishery. These include:
- Transference of many fishery management authorities from the State Legislature to the Calif. Fish and Game Commission (CFGC)
- Development of a "master plan" for implement the MLMA
- Development of a management plans for California state fisheries
- Development of a plan for dealing with "emerging fisheries" as the become operational
- Preparing an "Annual Status of California Fisheries Report," started by Sept. 2002
- By Jan. 1, 2002, development of management plans for the white sea bass and the "nearshore fishery" (this would include the live fish fishery)
In Sept. 2000, the CFGC is expected to adopt interim regulations to protect nearshore fish populations until the DFG can complete the process of developing a nearshore fishery management plan.
Citizen Monitoring Network
Holly Price, Water Quality Protection Program Director, provided a summary of water quality monitoring and education programs the Sanctuary is currently working on. A handout was distributed that outlines her talk. Holly talked about the goals for citizen water quality monitoring networks and programs. She also summarized the specific resources that are available for local communities interested in starting water quality monitoring programs. The next steps for getting started in Cambria, include:
- Set goals for monitoring program: what do you want to monitor? why?
- Determine what type of monitoring equipment is most appropriate, according to specified goals
- Find a dedicated leader (could be volunteer or staff, but must be someone within community)
- Provide training for leader (e.g., monitoring protocols, use of equipment, data management, QA/QC) &endash; via Network
- Purchase water quality monitoring equipment (cost: $600 minimum; full kit $2500)
- Recruit volunteers
- Provide training for volunteers &endash; via Network
- Organize volunteer effort (on-going, including continued training)
Andrew DeVogelaere provided a presentation on the Beach Coastal Ocean Mammal and Bird Education and Research Surveys (BEACHCOMBERS). The is a partnership between the Monterey Bay Sanctuary, Cal. Fish & Game, Calif. Office of Spill Prevention and Response, Calif. State Parks & the Pacific Grove Natural History Museum.
The beach monitoring program uses trained volunteers to sample selected sections of beach for dead, sick or injured birds and marine mammals. The data is collected into a database and can be used to track trends or identify potential problems, such as an oil spill or harmful algae bloom. The primary goals of the beach-cast monitoring program are the following:
- to determine the appropriate number of beaches to sample, the appropriate number of days in each month to sample, and the appropriate time of each day to sample;
- to provide adequate training of volunteers and check for the accuracy of data they collect (8-week training sessions have been established);
- to obtain additional funding for long-term monitoring program for marine bird,mammal, turtle beach carcasses, while determining natural and human-related changes in populations with a pilot study.
After these goals are reached, the program will expand from the area of Monterey Bay to cover the entire coast from Ano Nuevo to Point Sur, and even down to Cambria.
VI. UPDATE: FIBER OPTIC CABLES
Bill Douros provided an update on the Department of Commerce and NOAA's "white paper" on fiber optic cables. NOAA will publish an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) in August. The document will be available for public comment for 60-days. The Sanctuary will send notice to the SAC members as soon as it becomes available. Bill suggested that the SAC form a working group to address how they want to respond to the document.
The ANPR is asking the public to provide comments to NOAA on whether it needs to make changes to existing National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) regulations or establish some form of policy guidance to clarify NOAA's decision-making process regarding the installation and maintenance of commercial submarine cables within NMSs.
Recently, NOAA allowed a cable to be installed in part of the Stellwagen Bank NMS. The cable will be buried and will go from Dublin, Ireland to Nova Scotia, Canada to Boston, MA. The National Marine Sanctuaries Act allows for the recovery of costs necessary to issue and monitor permit activity. Stellwagen Bank NMS received money for monitoring, education and outreach. There will also be some fee charged for the fair market value for use of the seabed, to be determined in the future.
MCI Southern Crossing Project/Pacific Genesis Applications Group Update:
Dallas Meggit presented the SAC with a detailed update on the MCI Southern Cross Project. MCI-WorldCom abandoned their permit application for the Southern Crossing (permit # 99-0098) in June. However, the Pacific Genesis Applications/World-Com Group, is proposing to pick up this project where MCI left off. The project proposes to establish a multi-cable landing site for up to 5 cables as suggested by NOAA principles and anticipated state policy. The proposed project would consolidate cables bound for San Francisco and Silicon Valley at one site, in one corridor, landing at the Monterey Bay Academy, in La Selva Beach, south of Santa Cruz. The cable will be buried in a trench about 2 feet below the seafloor out to a water depth of 2,000 meters.
Dallas discussed the merits of submarine cables, including information about the why cables are used, cable bandwidth and projected Asian growth of demand for access to the Internet. Monterey Bay was chosen as a landfall sites for several reasons, including its proximity to Silicon Valley, favorable marine routes into the bay, Asia demand, and close to the system backbone (closest terrestrial route). The Monterey landing site will be a cable corridor, meaning that cables will be concentrated in this area as opposed to each having separate landings.
As part of an EIS, Pacific Genesis will evaluate six in-Sanctuary and one out-of-Sanctuary alternative route/landings. This will include a terrestrial option as well as several marine options. Pacific Genesis desires to work in cooperation with the Sanctuary, other permitting agencies, and the industry and address concerns. They believe that public participation and outreach are critical to acceptance.
Dr. Gary Greene, from Calif. State University, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, presented the SAC with a detailed geologic evaluation of the Monterey Bay area and the locations of the proposed project. He described his research methodologies and a summary of the information collected to date.
Global Photon Project Update
Lucy Demian and Tom Lumberg provided an update on the Global Photon fiber optic cable project. This cable would travel in the Sanctuary in a north-south direction with landfalls off San Francisco, at Pajaro, and at Point Lobos. This cable is able to handle 4-terabits of data transmitted by light and not electricity. The cable will be inserted to a depth of 3-feet below the seabed over approx. 93% of the cable route. Upgrades to the system would be done at the landfall stations. After a delay to revise its financial transaction documents and cable supply contracts, Global Photon is interested in meeting the Sanctuary's NEPA needs and pursuing the approval process to lay the cable.
Global Photon will be working with the Sanctuary and the California Coastal Commission on conducting a full EIS and related environmental studies. They are committed to ensure that a secure route is identified to minimize the impact of the cable on the environment over the life of the system. They will also be using Dr. Gary Greene, Calif. State University, Moss Landing Marine Laboratory, to conduct geological surveys of the Sur and Partington canyon crossings.
SAC members questioned Lucy about the cable route, alternatives including a land option, and the proposed landing at Point Lobos.
VII. UPDATE: PRESIDENTS MARINE PROTECTED AREA EXECUTIVE ORDER
Brady Phillips provided a brief summary of what has happened since President Clinton signed Executive Order #13158 on Marine Protected Areas on May 26, 2000. Dr. Baker will be sending out a letter to constituents explaining where NOAA is in implementing this E.O. It will be distributed to SAC members as soon as it becomes available.
1) MPA Federal Advisory Committee. NOAA, in coordination with the Department of the Interior, is preparing guidelines, which will be published in a Federal Register notice, concerning the newly created MPA Federal Advisory Committee. The notice will explain the purpose of the committee and how interested persons can apply to serve on the committee. Brady will send this out to SAC members as soon as it is available.
2) New MPA Center. NOAA is currently evaluating a range of possibilities for the structure and geographic location of the MPAC. No decision has been made on the structure or location of the MPAC. Since no new funding was provided to fulfill any of the responsibilities in the Executive Order, NOAA has to consider how to best fulfill the MPAC task under the current budget and personnel constraints. NOAA has developed a number of criteria to begin evaluating different options for the structure and any geographic location for the MPAC. They anticipate reporting the results of this process to the President by October 1, 2000.
3) New Web Site. The Executive Order (EO) directs NOAA and other federal agencies to develop a national inventory of MPAs that will be publicly accessible on a new MPA web site (mpa.gov). The information in this database will provide the foundation for gap analysis to design the national system of MPAs. NOAA has established an Inventory Work Group to assess the type of information that will be included on the database.
VIII. PRESENTATION: SANCTUARY'S OIL SPILL RESPONSE
Due to time constraints this presentation was postponed until a future SAC meeting.
IX. REPORT: WORKING GROUP ON CONGRESSIONAL CONTACT
Jim Stilwell distributed a memo to the SAC that set forth a set of proposed changes to the SAC Charter and Protocols, and a recommended course of action. The SAC did not have time to read the document in advance. There was discussion that the SAC endorse the proposed process to negotiate the revised language with NOAA. Bill Douros asked that SAC members first read the recommended language, understand the substance of it, and decide whether to actually change the charter, before starting negotiations. Other SAC members spoke in favor of this suggestion. The SAC members want to devote time at the next SAC meeting on this topic and hear what the NOAA attorneys' response to the Congressional Research Service report. A motion was made to proceed with Jim's recommended course of action, starting at number 3.
MOTION: (Passed, Unanimously): The SAC agrees to adopt Jim's recommended course of action for modifying the Charter and Protocols, starting at number 3 and place the topic on the agenda for October 6th meeting.
As such, the course of action includes:
October Meeting: Discussion of proposed amendments and modification to SAC Charter and Protocols. SAC provides additional guidance to working group.
October/November: Working Group prepares final documents for approval
December Meeting: Action by SAC to amend or modify SAC Charter and Protocols.
X. PROGRESS REPORT: FUNDING PILOT PROJECTS
Steve Webster provided a very brief update on recent developments with the funding pilot program chairs. New packets, containing color copies of the new NMSP Interpretive Sign Standards, and pledge protocol were distributed to the pilot project chairs.
XI. ACTION: SET OCTOBER 6 SAC MEETING AGENDA
The SAC discussed topics for the next agenda. Some of the topics included:
- Update: Kelp Management Plan update
- Update: Sanctuary Foundation
- Presentation: Sanctuary's Oil Spill Response
- Presentation: Management Plan Review
- Update: Funding Pilot Project Update
- Update: Presidents MPA Exec. Order
- Discussion: Working Group on Congressional Contact (1 hour)
- Update: NAPA Committee. The SAC formed a Committee to review the NAPA Report's recommendations to NOAA.
- Presentation: MTBE if time allows.
Sally Smith announced that National Geographic Society has a new cable TV channel. The water quality monitoring program from the Surfrider Foundation's Santa Cruz Chapter will be featured in July.
Dave Clayton announced a Monterey Underwater Harbor Clean-up on Saturday, July 22 at Wharf II. Check in is at 8:30 A.M. Volunteer divers are needed to clean-up trash and non-divers are welcome to help with shore support.
Gregor Cailliet directed the SAC members to the written summary of the topics discussed at the July 14 Research Activity Panel (RAP) meeting held at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. Gregor also invited SAC members to at BBQ at Moss Landing on Sept. 8th.
Patricia Clark-Gray directed the SAC members to the written summary of the topics discussed at the July 13 Sanctuary Education Panel (SEP) meeting held at the Monterey Maritime Museum.
Brady Phillips announced the 8th Sanctuary Birthday Celebration and Santa Cruz Shark Festival on September 16, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m on the Santa Cruz Wharf. The event will feature a live shark release, a treasure hunt for kids, marine education and activity booths, food, & entertainment. A formal Sanctuary Anniversary ceremony, with speeches from U.S. & California legislators, will take place at the Wharf Stage from 1:00 to 1:30 p.m.
Ruth Vreeland, AMBAG/City of Monterey, (SAC Alternate) presented a proclamation commending Dr. Steve Webster "for his services as chair of the Sanctuary Advisory Council and his dedication to the preservation of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary."
The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.
Monterey Bay Sanctuary Advisory Council Coordinator