On August 9, 2017, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) issued a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) as an endangered or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), concluding that listing at this time is not warranted. NMFS determined that the species is not endangered throughout all or a significant portion of its range, and that it is not likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future.
NMFS’s 12-month finding follows the Center for Biological Diversity’s June 20, 2016 petition to list the Pacific bluefin tuna as threatened under the ESA. NMFS evaluated 25 distinct threats, including overharvest, climate change, and water pollution, to the Pacific bluefin tuna and determined that, while the species’ population is near historical lows, it is estimated to include more than 1.6 million individuals with at least 143,000 adult males as of 2014. Moreover, NMFS concluded that 2014 management changes addressed concerns about the risk of overfishing.