Zero Mortality Rate Goal
Pilot Whale mortality
Photo: Mandy Merklein, P. Michael Payne
The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) was enacted in 1972 with the ideal of eliminating mortality and serious injury of marine mammals incidental to commercial fishing operations.
In 1994, Congress amended the MMPA and established a requirement that the level of incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals be reduced to insignificant levels approaching a zero rate by April 30, 2001, which is commonly referred to as the Zero Mortality Rate Goal (ZMRG).
To implement the MMPA, NMFS established a threshold level for mortality and serious injury that would meet this requirement. NMFS defined an Insignificance Threshold in regulations and estimated this threshold level as 10 percent of the "Potential Biological Removal (PBR) level" for a stock of marine mammals.
- Final Rule Implementing the Zero Mortality Rate Goal (ZMRG) [pdf] [77 KB] (69 FR 43338, July 20, 2004)
- Environmental Assessment and Regulatory Impact Review for the Implementation of the Zero Mortality Rate Goal of the Marine Mammal Protection Act and Finding of No Significant Impact [pdf] [416 KB]
- Authorization for Commercial Fisheries under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972; Zero Mortality Rate Goal: Proposed Rule [pdf] [72 KB] (69 FR 23477, April 29, 2004)
- Guidelines for Differentiating Serious and Non-serious Injury of Marine Mammals Incident to Commercial Fishing [pdf] [3.3 MB]
- Report to Congress: Fisheries' Progress Under the ZMRG [pdf] [672 KB] (August 2004)