Public Comment Period for Proposed Designation of Hawaiian Monk Seal Critical Habitat Extended

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) recently reopened  the public comment period for its proposal to designate additional critical habitat for endangered Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi).  As we previously reported, on June 2, 2011, NMFS proposed revising the critical habitat for the Hawaiian monk seal pursuant to section 4 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by extending the current designation in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands out to the 500-meter depth contour, including Sand Island at Midway Islands; and by designating six new areas in the main Hawaiian Islands, including Kaula Island, Niihau, Kauai, Oahu, Maui nui, and Hawaii.  NMFS provided a 90-day comment period, ending August 31, 2011.

NMFS received numerous requests for an extension of the comment period.  The requests identified that additional time was needed to more fully consider the proposed rulemaking and provide comments on the proposed designation.  In response to those requests, NMFS elected to extend the deadline.  The public will now have until January 6, 2012 to comment on NMFS's proposed designation.

Documents and reference materials related to the proposed rulemaking are available via the NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office Web site:

  • David J. Miller

    David Miller assists clients on a variety of complex land use and environment related matters, including matters dealing with the National Environmental Policy Act, Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act, and the ...

Nossaman’s Endangered Species Law & Policy blog focuses on news, events, and policies affecting endangered species issues in California and throughout the United States. Topics include listing and critical habitat decisions, conservation and recovery planning, inter-agency consultation, and related developments in law, policy, and science. We also inform readers about regulatory and legislative developments, as well as key court decisions.

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