Report to Congress on the Implementation of the Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program
In 2008, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released the first report to Congress on the Implementation of the Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program, called for in the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act of 2006 (MSRA). Prepared under the auspices of NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program and in consultation with the Nation's eight Regional Fishery Management Councils, the report provides information on steps taken by NOAA and its partners to identify, monitor, and protect deep sea coral areas. Sections provide a brief discussion of current knowledge and knowledge gaps about deep sea corals (also known as deep water or cold-water corals), NOAA’s expertise and authorities to conserve deep sea coral communities, and summaries of management actions taken by NOAA, the Fishery Management Councils, other federal agencies, and international organizations in 2007. The final section highlights research priorities for 2009 and recommendations for addressing knowledge gaps. The report includes an initial list of areas known to contain deep sea corals that NOAA recommends the Regional Fishery Management Councils evaluate in considering zones to protect deep sea corals as allowed in discretionary provisions of the MSRA.
Click here to view the report.