The Western Division has a long history of weighing in on environmental issues through resolutions, comment letters, and policy statements (see archive here). The Resource Policy and Environmental Concerns Committee (RPECC) is the means by which much of this work gets done. The RPECC improves communication and coordination between the Division, Chapters, and Society when addressing environmental issues and policies that may influence fisheries and aquatic ecosystems, primarily within the Division, but also nationally and even globally.
The RPECC Chairperson (see below) is appointed by the Division President and serves also on the Society’s Resolutions Committee as an ex officio member. The RPECC consists of at least two other Division members (including the Division Past President). The remaining composition of the Committee, when feasible, will include at least one member of each Chapter, preferably those concurrently serving as Chairperson of the Chapter’s committee equivalent to the RPECC. The diversified structure of the RPECC will facilitate the accomplishment of the committee’s objectives and responsibilities.
The RPECC will work toward accomplishing the mission of Division and Society by “advancing sound science and disseminating science-based fisheries information for the global protection, conservation, and sustainability of fishery resources and aquatic ecosystems.” The RPECC will rely primarily on members, the Division’s Executive Committee, and AFS staff to: 1) assist in screening potential environmental issues and policies that may be relevant for action, and 2) develop initial language for the RPECC review and recommendation to the Division’s Executive Committee. This information exchange will facilitate awareness and encourage active participation within the Division membership.
The RPECC will:
- seek and identify actions, issues, and policies that may be detrimental or beneficial to aquatic resources within the Division by providing a forum for the exchange of information;
- serve as counsel to the Division by reviewing and researching these concerns in a timely manner to determine if a response from the Division is desired;
- if a response is warranted, ascertain the target audience and appropriate approach in accordance with Society and Division advocacy procedures;
- recommend a suitable response to the Division’s Executive Committee;
- in collaboration with the respective subject matter experts, complete a technical review by developing an accurate, biologically sound, and scientifically defensible response; and
- communicate the Division’s action by disseminating information to the Division’s membership and external publics.
The RPECC will also address requests when the Division’s position on such matters is solicited by the Society, members of the Division and Chapters, organizations, or agencies. In these situations, requests for Division action will be submitted to the RPECC Chairperson with supporting and sufficient documentation. The RPECC Chairperson will judiciously refer the requests for action to the RPECC for review; the Chairperson will also communicate such requests to Division officers. The RPECC has developed guidelines to help ascertain whether to act on such requests. See the guidelines here.
RPECC contact information:
Chair: Robert Hughes, Ph.D.; [email protected]
AK: Joel Markis; [email protected]
AZ/NM: Colleen Caldwell; [email protected]
CA/NV: Gary Sprague; [email protected]
MX : Norman Mercado-Silva; [email protected]
MT Adam Strainer; [email protected]
UT: Brett Roper; [email protected]
WA/BC: Bob Vadas Jr.; [email protected]
Resource Policy and Environmental Concerns Addressed
See Resolutions and Policies page in the archives.