Endangered and Threatened Species; Recovery Plans

Federal Register: October 7, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 193)


Page 51553-51555

From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XR39

Endangered and Threatened Species; Recovery Plans

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and

Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice of availability; request for comments and notice of public meetings.

SUMMARY: The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announces availability for public review and comment of the Draft Central Valley

Salmon and Steelhead Recovery Plan (Draft Plan). The Draft Plan addresses the Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU), the Central Valley spring-run Chinook salmon (O. tshawytscha) ESU, and the Distinct

Population Segment (DPS) of Central Valley Steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss). NMFS is soliciting review and comment from the public and all interested parties on the Draft Plan. In addition, four public meetings will be held in October 2009 as opportunities for providing comments on the Draft Plan (dates to be determined).

DATES: NMFS will consider and address all substantive comments received during the comment period. Comments must be received no later than 5 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on December 7, 2009. Public meetings will also be held (see Public Meetings below).

ADDRESSES: Please send written comments and materials to Brian

Ellrott, National Marine Fisheries Service, 650 Capitol Mall, Suite 8- 300, Sacramento, CA 95816. Comments may also be submitted by e-mail to:

CentralValleyPlan.SWR@noaa.gov. Include in the subject line of the e- mail comment the following identifier: ``Comments on Central Valley

Salmon and Steelhead Draft Plan.'' Comments may be submitted via facsimile (fax) to (916) 930-3629.

Persons wishing to review the Draft Plan can obtain an electronic copy (i.e., CD-ROM) from Aimee Diefenbach by calling (916) 930-3600 or by e-mailing a request to aimee.diefenbach@noaa.gov with the subject line ``CD-ROM Request for Central Valley Salmon and Steelhead Recovery

Draft Plan.'' Electronic copies of the Draft Plan are also available on-line on the NMFS website http://swr.nmfs.noaa.gov/recovery/ centralvalleyplan.htm.

The specific dates, times, and locations of public meetings will be posted on this website as they become available.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Brian Ellrott at (916) 930-3612 or

Howard Brown, NMFS Sacramento River Basin Branch Chief at (916) 930- 3608.



Recovery plans describe actions beneficial to the conservation and recovery of species listed under the Endangered Species Act of 1973

(ESA), as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). The ESA requires that recovery plans incorporate: (1) objective, measurable criteria which, when met, would result in a determination that the species is no longer threatened or endangered; (2) site-specific management actions necessary to achieve the plan's goals; and (3) estimates of the time required and costs to implement recovery actions. The ESA requires the development of recovery plans for each listed species unless such a plan would not promote its recovery.

NMFS is responsible for developing and implementing ESA recovery plans for listed salmon and steelhead. In so doing, NMFS' goal is to restore endangered and threatened Pacific salmonids to the point that they are again self-sustaining members of their ecosystems and no longer need the protections of the ESA.

Recovery Plans developed under the ESA are guidance documents, not regulatory documents. However, the ESA envisions Recovery Plans as the central organizing tool for guiding the recovery of listed species.

Recovery Plans also guide Federal agencies in fulfilling their obligations under section 7(a)(1) of the ESA, which calls on all

Federal agencies to ``utilize their authorities in furtherance of the purposes of this Act by carrying out programs for the conservation of endangered species and threatened species.'' In addition to outlining proactive measures to achieve species recovery, Recovery Plans provide a context and framework for implementing other provisions of the ESA with respect to a particular species, including consultations on

Federal agency activities under section 7(a)(2) and the development of

Habitat Conservation Plans in accordance with section 10(a)(1)(B).

This Draft Plan serves as a guideline for achieving recovery criteria and goals by describing the criteria by which NMFS would measure species recovery, the strategy to achieve recovery, and the recovery actions necessary to achieve viable ESU's of Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon and Central Valley spring-run Chinook salmon, and a viable DPS of Central Valley steelhead.

Recovery Criteria

Recovery criteria are built upon criteria recommended by the NMFS

Technical Recovery Team (TRT) for the identification of viable anadromous salmonid populations and ESUs/DPSs. A viable population is defined as a population having a negligible risk (

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