Text: H.R.5064 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (02/15/2018)


115th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 5064


To authorize aboriginal subsistence whaling pursuant to the regulations of the International Whaling Commission and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

February 15, 2018

Mr. Young of Alaska introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs


A BILL

To authorize aboriginal subsistence whaling pursuant to the regulations of the International Whaling Commission and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Whaling Convention Amendments Act of 2018”.

SEC. 2. Amendment of the Whaling Convention Act of 194.

(a) Aboriginal subsistence whaling.—The Whaling Convention Act of 1949 (16 U.S.C. 916 et seq.) is amended by inserting after section 6 the following:

“SEC. 6A. Aboriginal subsistence whaling.

“(a) In general.—The Secretary of Commerce, or such officer as may be designated by the Secretary, shall authorize aboriginal subsistence whaling pursuant to paragraph 13 of the regulations of the Commission (or any successor to such paragraph), if such whaling—

“(1) is for subsistence purposes (including the sale of authentic native articles of handicrafts and clothing);

“(2) does not include the striking, taking, or killing of calves or any whale accompanied by a calf; and

“(3) is not accomplished in a wasteful manner.

“(b) Catch limit.—

“(1) REQUIREMENT TO ESTABLISH.—The Secretary of Commerce shall establish catch limits for the Alaska Native aboriginal subsistence whale hunt for any year, if the Secretary determines that—

“(A) the Commission has failed to adopt catch limits applicable to the hunt for such year; and

“(B) the biological status of the affected stock is such that, based on the most recent review of the status of such stock by the Scientific Committee of the Commission, the aboriginal subsistence needs statement submitted by the United States to the Commission of that year is sustainable.

“(2) LIMITATION.—The catch limits established by the Secretary under paragraph (1) shall satisfy the Alaska Native subsistence needs described in a statement submitted by the United States to the Commission, and shall include carryover at the level accepted by the Scientific Committee of the Commission in its most recent review of the subsistence whaling quota.

“(3) CONSTRUCTION.—Nothing in paragraph (1) relieves the United States Commissioner of the Commissioner's obligation to continue seeking adoption by the Commission, pursuant to the paragraph 13 of the regulations of the Commission (or any successor to such paragraph that permits aboriginal subsistence whaling), of catch limits that provide for Alaska Native aboriginal subsistence needs.”.

(b) Waiver of environmental review.—The Whaling Convention Act of 1949 (16 U.S.C. 916 et seq.), as amended by subsection (a), is further amended by adding at the end the following:

“SEC. 17. Waiver of environmental review.

“An action taken under this Act, with respect to a stock of a whale species, shall be deemed not to require any review under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) if the Secretary determines such action is sustainable based on the most recent review of the status of such stock by the Scientific Committee of the Commission.”.

SEC. 3. Implementing regulations.

(a) In general.—Not later than 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Commerce shall issue any regulations necessary to implement section 6A of the Whaling Convention Act of 1949, as added by section 2(a).

(b) Review and updates.—The Secretary of Commerce shall review and update the regulations required by subsection (a) as needed, and at least once every 5 years, after the date on which the Secretary of Commerce issues the regulations as a final rule.