Steve Bittenbender

Contributing Editor

Steve Bittenbender works as a freelance journalist based in Louisville, Kentucky. Besides working for SeafoodSource.com as a contributing editor, Steve also works as an editor for Government Security News and as the Kentucky correspondent for the Reuters News Service. He also works as a sports writer for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal and The Associated Press. He has received awards from the Kentucky Press Association and the Louisville Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for his on-going and enterprise reporting work.

Published on
January 21, 2022

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo announced Friday, 21 January, 2022, her office has approved disaster declarations for eight Alaska fisheries.

The rulings means those fisheries are now eligible to federal assistance through NOAA. No funding total was mentioned in the NOAA release, with the amounts to be determined at a later date.

“Helping communities to bounce back from the impacts of fishery disasters is essential, and we are

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Published on
January 18, 2022

Starting in February, NOAA Fisheries will enact a ban prohibiting port access for all Mexican fishing boats that operate in the Gulf of Mexico.

The federal agency said in a statement that the move, which will become effective Monday, 7 February, comes as the U.S. issued a “negative certification” against its southern neighbor for illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing in a report to Congress last August. American

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Published on
January 13, 2022

The Center for Biological Diversity filed a federal lawsuit on Monday, 10 January, saying a permit NOAA Fisheries authorized for sablefish further endangers Pacific humpback whales.

In December 2021, NOAA Fisheries approved the use of pot gear for harvesting sablefish. The pots sit on the ocean floor in a two-mile long string with vertical lines tied to each end of the string, according to the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for

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Published on
January 12, 2022

U.S. Representative Andy Harris is calling on the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden to make more H-2B visas available to cover the need crab houses have in the Maryland Republican’s district.

It’s not the first time Harris has called for an increase in the temporary worker permits that enable companies to bring nonimmigrant workers to the U.S. for temporary, non-agricultural work. In 2020, the U.S. Department of Homeland

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Published on
December 28, 2021

Through 20 January, 2022, NOAA Fisheries is accepting pre-proposals to fund projects designed to reduce bycatch.

In an announcement made on Wednesday, 15 December, the agency said about USD 2.4 million (EUR 2.1 million) is expected to be available for the Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program (BREP). The program looks to support new technologies or fishing practices that will minimize the amount of protected and endangered species that are

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Published on
December 22, 2021

For the second time in four years, the Center for Food Safety (CFS) has taken the federal government to court to keep the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from approving projects in Washington state that expand shellfish aquaculture without considering their environmental impact.

The lawsuit, filed Monday, 19 December in U.S. District Court in Seattle, Washington, by CFS claims the Corps’ policies violate the Clean Water Act, the National

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Published on
December 16, 2021

A push to expand offshore aquaculture in the United States garnered more support on Tuesday, 14 December with the refiling of the Advancing the Quality and Understanding of American Aquaculture (AQUAA) Act.

U.S. Rep. Stephen Palazzo (R-Mississippi) and U.S. Rep. Edward Case (D-Hawaii) are the sponsors behind the House version of the bill. Their bill would create a national framework for aquaculture developments and streamline the regulatory

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Published on
December 15, 2021

More than 100 scientists signed a letter sent to Congress on Monday, 13 December, urging lawmakers to ensure that all seafood products imported into the United States are caught using legal means.

Illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing is often associated with human trafficking and other human rights abuses, and distant-water fishing forces vessel owners and operators to extend trips to “achieve a sizeable catch,” the

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Published on
December 10, 2021

The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday, 8 December, passed a bill that seeks to reform the Federal Maritime Commission and reduce the country's trade deficit ...

Photo courtesy of Philip

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Published on
December 3, 2021

Fishing-related businesses in the U.S. state of New York are now able to apply for direct payments from the second round of COVID-19 relief funding the state received from the federal government.

The money comes from the USD 255 million (EUR 225.4 million) Congress approved in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which lawmakers passed late in 2020.

In March 2021, NOAA Fisheries announced allocations for each state and territory. New

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