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New Features of the 2016 National Standard 1 Guidelines

1. Phasing-in changes to catch levels

The 2016 NS1 guidelines include a provision that allows changes to catch limits to be gradually phased in over a period of time not to exceed 3 years, as long as overfishing is prevented. Historically, changes in catch limits were made over the course of one year. Phasing-changes to catch levels will help the fishing industry plan for the future and help create more stable fisheries over the short-term. For more information on phasing-in changes to catch levels, please see our FAQs page.

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2. Carrying-over unused quota into the next year

If a fishery does not catch all of its annual catch limit during one fishing season, the NS1 guidelines allow Councils to carry-over a portion of the catch underage into the next year. Carrying-over unused catch is designed to relieve pressure on fishermen to catch their entire catch limit, which can result in fishing in unsafe situations or harvesting fish during poor market conditions. There are two approaches to carrying-over a portion of a catch underage – as shown below. For more information on annual catch limits and carry-over provisions, please see our FAQs page.

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3. Determining which stocks require conservation and management

Under the Magnuson-Stevens Act, federal management is required when a fishery is in need of conservation and management. The new National Standard guidelines clarify and streamline guidance on determining whether a stock requires conservation and management.

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