Petition to List 83 Species of Coral Threatened or Endangered Will Hold Listening Sessions and Workshops

NMFS will begin their public listening sessions and science workshops related to our status review of 82 coral species in response to a petition from the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) to list 83 coral species as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The purposes of the listening sessions are toexplain to the public the process and information we are using to decide whether listing one or more of the 82 corals species is warranted, and to allow opportunity for the public to provide us with additional information that may further inform that decision. The purpose of the science workshops is to provide the opportunity for additional individual expert advice and public input on the science relevant to our decision concerning the 82 species of coral being considered for listing under the ESA.

DATES: The public listening sessions and science workshops will be held in June 2012. 

ADDRESSES: A public listening session and a science workshop will be 

held in Hawaii, and another public listening session and another 

science workshop will be held in Florida. For specific locations, see 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. You may obtain a copy of the Status Review 

Report of 82 Candidate Coral Species Petitioned Under the U.S. 

Endangered Species Act (Status Review Report) and the draft Management 

Report for 82 Corals Status Review under the Endangered Species Act: 

Assessment of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms and Conservation Efforts 

(draft Management Report) by visiting the Internet at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/stories/2012/04/4_13_12corals_petition.html.

    The two reports may also be viewed, by appointment, during regular 

business hours, at: NMFS, Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1601 

Kapiolani Blvd., Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI, 96814; or NMFS, Southeast 

Regional Office, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.

 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For listening sessions: Chelsey Young, 

NMFS, Pacific Islands Regional Office, 808-944-2137; Lance Smith, NMFS, 

Pacific Island Regional Office, 808-944-2258; Jennifer Moore, NMFS, 

Southeast Regional Office, 727-824-5312. For science workshops: Samuel 

Pooley, NMFS, Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, 808-983-5301; 

Margaret Miller, NMFS, Southeast Fisheries Science Center, 305-361-

4561.

Background

    These public listening sessions and science workshops are not part 

of the usual rulemaking process and are unique to NMFS's response to 

the petition to list 83 coral species. Thus, the additional outreach 

conducted in this case does not establish precedent for any other ESA-

listing process.

    We will hold one public listening session and one science workshop 

in each of two NMFS regions: the Southeast and Pacific Islands.

Speaker Sign Up

    Doors will open for speaker registration one hour before the 

listening sessions and science workshops begin, though sign-up will 

continue throughout these meetings. If there are more speakers signed 

up than time allows for, we will select speakers from the registration 

list randomly. Registered speakers will be asked to indicate their full 

name, contact information, any organization(s) they are representing, 

and a brief summary of the information provided. Because it is possible 

that the schedule may not accommodate all registered speakers, we also 

encourage attendees to submit written information at the listening 

sessions and science workshops.

Listening Sessions

    June 25, 2012: 6-9 p.m.; Pagoda Hotel; 1525 Rycroft Street; 

Honolulu, HI; telephone: (808) 941-6611.

    June 28, 2012: 4-7 p.m.; Nova Southeastern University, 

Oceanographic Center, Center of Excellence in Coral Reef Ecosystems 

Science, 8000 North Ocean Drive; Dania Beach, FL; telephone: (954) 262-

3600.

    NMFS staff will provide a moderator for meeting management. Note-

takers will document the listening sessions, and audio recordings will 

be used to assist in clarifying speaker information for the final 

record.

    NMFS staff will provide a brief PowerPoint presentation that will 

cover the ESA status review process, the Status Review Report, and the 

draft Management Report. There will then be an interactive, time-

limited, question-and-answer period during which attendees may ask NMFS 

staff about information presented. Finally, registered speakers will be 

provided with an opportunity to speak and provide information. Each 

registered speaker will be limited to 5 minutes. Attendees may also 

submit written information.

Science Workshops

    June 18, 2012: 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; East-West Center; Jefferson 

Hall (Imin Conference Center), University of Hawaii campus, 1601 East-

West Road, Honolulu, HI; telephone: (808) 983-5303.

    June 27, 2012: 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.; Nova Southeastern University, 

Oceanographic Center, Center of Excellence in Coral Reef Ecosystems 

Science, 8000 North Ocean Drive, Dania Beach, FL; telephone: (954) 262-

3600.

Science Workshop Topics

    The science workshops in the Pacific Islands (HI) and Southeast 

(FL) regions will follow a similar format. Each will begin with a brief 

presentation on the Status Review Report, followed by sessions that 

expand specific elements of the Status Review Report. The science 

workshops will focus on two themes: ``Climate Change and Climate 

Impacts on Coral Reef Ecosystems,'' and ``Coral Reef Ecology and 

Adaptation.'' The Pacific Islands science workshop will include two 

Panel sessions, and the Southeast science workshop will include three 

sessions.

Speaker Time Limits and Opportunities for Public Input

    After the presentation on the Status Review Report, there will be 

an interactive, time-limited, question-and-answer period during which 

attendees may ask NMFS staff about information presented.

    After each thematic session, there will be a 45- to 60-minute 

period during which registered speakers will be given an opportunity to 

ask additional questions of the panelists or to present additional 

information.

    During registration, speakers should sign up to speak under one or 

more thematic sessions. Each registered speaker will be limited to 5 

minutes. Attendees may also submit written information.

Questions

    Questions to panelists should be limited to those necessary to 

clarify the panelist's presentation. Questions seeking consensus among 

panelists or registered speakers will not be entertained.

Workshop Rapporteur

    NOAA scientific experts knowledgeable of coral reef ecosystems and 

climate will prepare a summary of the workshop, noting the main points 

raised by the panelists and the registered speakers. This summary and 

any written information submitted by the panelists, registered 

speakers, or other attendees will be part of the record of the 

workshop.