Haint Blue: The 1997 NC Fisheries Reform Act

Discussions of Science, Policy and Politics : A project of the Coastal and Ocean Policy program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

In commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the NC Fisheries reform Act of 1997, several scientists and commercial fishing representatives joined together to provide an oral history of the act including, its passage and locals' experiences.  

The research team conducted 13 oral history interviews, created 3 podcasts, and developed a discussion guide suitable for use in classrooms and public forums.  

During the Spring 2017 term, the MCOP capstone class participated in the researchers' introduction of their podcast to elicit feedback and students had the opportunity to discuss the material with project leads.  

The podcast was very cool and very well done!  Definitely worth a listen.

You can find more information on the project and the full podcast at Raising the Story.com

(From http://thehaintblue.blogspot.com/2017/04/the-1997-nc-fisheries-reform-act-oral.html )

New Podcast Explores History of North Carolina’s 1997 Fisheries Reform Act

The first episode of Lo & Behold: The Fisheries Reform Act, a podcast by Bit & Grain, is now available at bitandgrain.com.

The podcast is based on 13 oral history interviews conducted with fishermen, scientists, environmental advocates and resource managers involved in creating and implementing the 1997 N.C. Fisheries Reform Act. The comprehensive oral history project was made possible by the Community Collaborative Research Grant, a program supported by North Carolina Sea Grant in partnership with the William R. Kenan Jr. Institute for Engineering, Technology and Science based at North Carolina State University.

Project coordinator, Susan West, notes that opportunities to record and document the experiences of those involved are fading as this year marks the 20th anniversary of the original act. “Through collaboration, we were able to produce a multidimensional record of these voices that can be readily accessed by the public,” she explains.

Read the complete North Carolina Sea Grant news release here.

Telling the Story of the Fisheries Reform Act

“I think the most important aspect was the mechanism of developing a fisheries management plan for each of the major species.  Now, that’s not as easy as it sounds, of course, and no species stands on its own,” Dr. B. J. Copeland, retired North Carolina State University professor of Zoology and Marine Sciences, told oral historian Mary Williford last June.

Copeland was talking about the 1997 North Carolina Fisheries Reform Act, the most significant fisheries legislation in state history, and the three years of research, meetings, outreach, and negotiation that preceded passage of the act.  In 1994, the General Assembly had approved a moratorium on the sale of new commercial fishing licenses and established a 19-member committee to oversee study of the state's coastal fisheries management process and recommend changes to improve the process. 

Copeland was the executive director of North Carolina Sea Grant during that period and served on the study committee.  The committee reviewed fishing licenses, fishing gears, habitat protection, regulatory agency organization, and law enforcement, and developed recommendations to improve the coastal fisheries management process.  Those recommendations formed the basis for the Reform Act. 

Altogether, Williford and other oral historians interviewed thirteen people for the 1997 NC Fisheries Reform Act: An Oral History Perspective project.  Interviewees were fishermen, scientists, resource managers, elected officials, and environmental advocates instrumental in developing and implementing the legislation. 

Read more at the Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Partnership’s Sound Reflections.

 

 Photograph by Jimmy Johnson, APNEP

Photograph by Jimmy Johnson, APNEP

Podcast Preview: 1997 Fisheries Reform Act

Interested in marine fisheries management?  Enjoy listening to first-hand accounts of how public policy is made?  Curious about how oral history can help bring scholarship into the public square?

 You are invited to attend a special preview airing of a new podcast exploring the NC Fisheries Reform Act. 

The podcast features the voices of fishermen, scientists, environmental advocates and resource managers instrumental in crafting and implementing the 1997 Act that brought far-reaching change to the way NC manages coastal fisheries.  It is one of a three-part series based on thirteen oral history interviews conducted last year as part of the 1997 NC Fisheries Reform Act: An Oral History Perspective project funded by the North Carolina Sea Grant Community Collaborative Research Program.

 A guided discussion with project developers and narrators will follow the airing.

 Three podcast previews will be held:

 Wednesday, February 22, 2 to 3 p.m., in Newport, NC

Wednesday, March 1, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., in Wanchese, NC

Tuesday, March 7, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., in Raleigh, NC

 The event is free but pre-registration is required, as space is limited.

 Please contact Susan West (westontheridge@gmail.com, 252-995-4131) for more information or to register. 

 

The 1997 NC Fisheries Reform Act: An Oral History Perspective

The 1997 NC Fisheries Reform Act project consists of thirteen oral history interviews conducted with fishermen, scientists, advocates, and resource managers instrumental in crafting and implementing the Reform Act, the most significant fisheries legislation in North Carolina history.  The interviews will be available online and form the basis for a series of podcasts currently under production.  Garrity-Blake and West conducted interviews and West serves as project manager, working with a team of collaborators fluent in coastal ecosystems, archival science, and audio podcasting.  The project is funded by the North Carolina Sea Grant Community Collaborative Research Grant Program.

photo by natalie abassi.jpg