Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA)
Legislation providing for the protection of all marine mammals. The Act (16 USC 1361 et seq.) prohibits the hunting, killing, capture, and/or harassment of marine mammals, as well as the import, export, and sale of marine mammals, within the United States. Authority under the MMPA is divided between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). A third agency, the Marine Mammal Commission, was established to review and make recommendations on the policies and actions of the USFWS and NMFS related to their implementation of the MMPA. The full suite of MMPA regulations promulgated by the USFWS is available at 50 CFR 18. The full suite of MMPA regulations promulgated by the NMFS is available at 50 CFR 216.
Regulations Applicable to Energy Development
The entire suite of MMPA regulations may be applicable to energy development activities in or adjacent to the marine environment. The USFWS has responsibility for the conservation and management of sea and marine otters, walrus, polar bear, 3 species of manatees, and dugong. The NMFS has responsibility for the conservation and management of pinnepeds other than walrus (i.e., seals and sea lions) and cetaceans (whales and dolphins).
Relevant Web Site(s)
This statute may apply to the following energy resource:Hydrokinetic