NOTE: The Aquaculture Fishery Management Plan is voided. A Court ruling determined that the Department of Commerce did not have the authority to permit aquaculture under federal fisheries management law. The following materials are provided for reference only.
Offshore aquaculture is the rearing of aquatic organisms in controlled environments (e.g., cages or net pens) in federally managed areas of the ocean. Federally managed areas of the Gulf of Mexico begin where state jurisdiction ends and extends 200 miles offshore, to the outer limit of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
The purpose of this Aquaculture Fishery Management Plan was to maximize benefits to the nation by establishing a regional permitting process to manage the development of an environmentally sound and economically sustainable aquaculture industry in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.