• Sunset view of Glacier Bay and the surrounding Fairweather Mountains.

    Glacier Bay

    National Park & Preserve Alaska

Proposed 2015 Cruise Ship Quota for Glacier Bay

cruise ship in glacier bay

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News Release Date: November 13, 2013
Contact: Allison Banks, 907-697-2230

In 2003, the National Park Service (NPS) completed the Vessel Quotas and Operating Requirements Environmental Impact Statement (VQOREIS). Subsequent regulations delegated the authority to set annual cruise ship quotas to the park superintendent. The VQOR EIS Record of Decision (ROD) states that a determination to increase cruise ship seasonal use-day quotas will rely on criteria that define the environmental and social conditions to be met before any additional use-days are approved.

In 2004, an independent Science Advisory Board (SAB) was appointed to assist in determining and recommending studies that better define these environmental and social conditions, and fill important information gaps. In 2005, the SAB made recommendations for priority research, and several studies were implemented. In 2009, SAB members, principal investigators, and NPS managers met to review results of the first suite of studies. Their assessment indicated that the original impact analyses from theVQOR EIS remain accurate but recommended additional studies that focus on potential impacts to air quality, soundscape, marine wildlife, and the Huna Tlingit relationship to their ancestral homeland.

Based on the scientific information available at this time,the Superintendent has proposed that the 2015 seasonal use-day quotas remain unchanged from the 2014 levels. For the June, July, and August summer season the quota would be set at 153 use days. The May and September shoulder season quota would be set at 92 use days. The year-round daily quota for cruise ships remains at two per day in accordance with the 2003 VQOR EIS ROD and existing regulations.The NPS is soliciting public comment on the proposed 2015 day use quota. Comments will be accepted until close of business on November 27, 2013. You may read more about the proposal and submit comments by visiting the NPS Planning, Environment, and Public Comment website at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/ 

Comments may also be mailed to the address given above, or submitted by email to: e-mail us

Did You Know?

Kittlitz's Murrelet

Kittlitz Murrelets are seabirds, spending most of their lives on the ocean, diving for fish. However, they nest on scree slopes or cliff faces near the tops of mountains in glaciated regions. Their plumage is so cryptic, only 25 nests have ever been found.