Washington Law Review


This note will analyze the major issue of Maine v. Kreps, whether Secretary Kreps fulfilled the FCMA's requirements in her determination of optimum yield. This issue is discussed in two parts. First, the criteria expressed in the preliminary management plan are analyzed in light of the relevant provisions of the FCMA. Second, the inclusion of foreign policy considerations in the optimum yield calculations (a factor not discussed in the preliminary management plan) is analyzed by (1) inferring from the Maine opinion the proper use of foreign policy in management decisions, and (2) suggesting criteria which may affect the role of foreign policy in the development of future management plans. This note concludes that the need for rebuilding a fish stock and the capacity and incentive of domestic fishermen to exploit that fish stock are appropriate considerations in determining optimum yield. These considerations should, however, be treated more comprehensively than they are in Secretary Kreps' preliminary management plan. The FCMA also requires an analysis of the effects a fishing quota might have on other interrelated fish stocks whether or not those stocks are under exclusive U.S. control. The effect of fishing quotas on U.S. foreign relations is an appropriate secondary consideration in establishing optimum yield, but the possible decrease in efficiency of domestic fishermen caused by increased foreign fishing should be considered as well.

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