This omnibus action establishes a new Habitat Area of Particular Concern (HAPC) in Southern New England through framework adjustments to the groundfish, scallop, monkfish, skate, and Atlantic herring plans.

HAPCs support the development of conservation measures through the Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) consultation process by providing focal locations and habitat types where the Council recommends an especially hard look at the impacts of federally permitted activities. HAPCs do not directly restrict fishing or non-fishing ocean activities. Rather, they strongly encourage actions to avoid, minimize, or mitigate impacts on habitats within HAPCs. HAPCs provide a clear indication of the value the Council places on specific habitat types and functions and underscore recommendations to protect such habitats from impacts.

Southern New England HAPC Final Rule - February 5, 2024

Southern New England HAPC Proposed Rule - Comments due October 26, 2023

Southern New England HAPC Final Submission – September 26, 2023