The Council reviewed reports from the FEP Team, Climate Change Taskforce (CCTF), and Local Knowledge/Traditional Knowledge/Subsistence Taskforce (LKTKS). The Council approved the workplan for the CCTF following requested revisions.
Fishery Ecosystem Plan Team
The FEP Team provided a report on their March 2020 meeting, at which they discussed the ongoing work of the two Taskforces as well as research priorities and the development of a new ecosystem report focused on strategic and long-term indicators. The Team will meet again before June to continue development of the report, and will continue to coordinate with the Taskforces on consolidating and distinguishing ecosystem and climate information products for the Council. Staff contact for the FEP Plan Team is Diana Evans.
Climate Change Taskforce (CCTF) Workplan
The Council received a report from the Bering Sea FEP Climate Change Task Force (CCTF) on their draft work plan. The Council endorsed the work plan and supports the goal of the Climate Change Module as developed by the CCTF: ‘to facilitate the Council’s work towards climate-ready fisheries management that helps ensure both short- and long-term resilience for the Bering Sea’ as well as the steps outlined by the CCTF to achieve this goal. The Council noted that its existing public process incorporates extensive, primarily near-term, ecosystem and climate information in decision-making. The CCTF workplan will focus on how to incorporate long-term trend information from a diverse knowledge base into the Council’s existing processes. The Council requested some additional revisions for the CCTF workplan including: 1) regular check-ins with the SSC and Council; 2) a list of deliverables that relate to the module’s steps and the taskforce’s remaining timeframe (2021 – 2025); 3) identification of NMFS and/or Council groups proposed to take on ongoing maintenance of new climate information once the work of the CCTF is complete; and 4) input provided by the Ecosystem Committee intended to increase understanding and readability of the workplan. The CCTF will be holding its next meeting in the Spring of 2021 to finalize the work plan and draft the timeline for their work. Additional information on the meeting will be posted to the Council’s website.
The Council also issued a call for nominations for a new CCTF member with industry expertise. Staff contact for the CCTF is Diana Stram.
Local Knowledge, Traditional Knowledge, and Subsistence Taskforce
The Council received a presentation on the Local Knowledge, Traditional Knowledge, and Subsistence (LKTKS) Taskforce’s work over 2020. The co-chairs’ update reminded the Council of its past action in January 2020 which adopted two over-arching goals and five objectives for its work. In 2020, the LKTKS Taskforce had three meetings (one in-person and two virtual), completed their workplan, created a glossary of terms to guide their work, made progress towards identifying initial onramps for LKTKS experts and information, and began to outline protocols. The LKTKS Taskforce’s next meeting will be held virtually on March 16 and 17. Staff contact for the LKTKS Taskforce is Kate Haapala.