NMFS Extends Comment Period on Proposal to Designate Critical Habitat for Indo-Pacific Corals
On February 9, 2021 the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) published a notice extending the public comment period on its proposed rule to designate critical habitat for Indo-Pacific Corals. The proposed rule would designate critical habitat for seven species of Indo-Pacific corals in Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and the Pacific Remote Islands areas. If these areas are designated, certain industry activities would be required to go through additional Federal Agency review under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act to ensure that they are not likely to jeopardize the species’ continued existence. Written comments on the proposed rule are now due by March 27, 2021.