FSMC, TITLE 23.  RESOURCE CONSERVATION

 
 
Chapter 3:  Endangered Species Act

301.     Short title.
302.     Findings.
303.     Policy.
304.     Administration of chapter.
305.     Definitions.
306.     Prohibited acts.
307.     Exception - Scientific uses.
308.     Exception - Public nuisances; Public safety.
309.     Exception - Controlled farming.
310.     Exception - Subsistence uses.
311.     Exception - Innocent possession.
312.     Exception - Prior possession.
313.     Regulations.
314.     Importation of endangered species.
315.     Importation of exotic plants and animals.
316.     Confiscation of plants, equipment, etc., for violations.
317.     Penalties for violation of chapter.

      301.  Short title.
     This chapter is known and may be cited as the "Trust Territory Endangered Species Act of 1975."

Source:  COM PL 6-55 1; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 101.

      302.  Findings.
     The Congress of Micronesia has determined that certain species of plants and animals are threatened with or in danger of becoming extinct in the Trust Territory.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 2; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 102.

      303.  Policy.
     The indigenous plants and animals of the Trust Territory are of esthetic, ecological, historical, recreational, scientific, and economic value and it is the policy of the government of the Trust Territory to foster the well-being of these plants and animals by whatever means necessary to prevent the extinction of any species or subspecies from our islands or the water surrounding them.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 3; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 103.

      304.  Administration of chapter.
     The provisions of the chapter will be administered by the director of Resources and Development through the office of the chief conservationist within his department.  This administration of the chapter will include the authority to set up conservation programs aimed at conserving endangered and threatened species, including research programs to adequately define which species are in fact endangered or threatened, and including, when necessary, the acquisition of land or aquatic habitat or interest therein for the conservation of resident endangered or threatened species.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 4; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 104.

      305.  Definitions.
     As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

     (1)     "Animal" means any species of organism in the animal kingdom including, but not restricted to, mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, clams, crustaceans and corals.

     (2)     "Commercial activity" means all activities of industry and trade including, but not limited to, buying or selling of commodities, and activities conducted for the purpose of facilitating such buying or selling.

     (3)     "Director," when used alone, means the director of Resources and Development of the Trust Territory.

     (4)     "Endangered species" means any species which is in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range.

     (5)     "Export" means to remove from any land or water area under the jurisdiction of the Trust Territory to any other place in the world.

     (6)     "Import" means to land on, bring into, or attempt to land on, bring into, or introduce into any place subject to the jurisdiction of the Trust Territory.

     (7)     "Or parts thereof" means, in the case of animals and fish, hide, hair, bone, skeleton, teeth, feathers, skin, scales, tissues or internal organs.  In the case of plants, the term means any root, leaf, stem, trunk, bark, fiber, seed, fruit, flower, tissue or extract.

     (8)     "Person" means any individual, corporation, partnership, trust, association, or any other private entity, or any officer, employee, agent, department or instrumentality of the Government of the Trust Territory, or of any Trust Territory district or municipality.

     (9)     "Plant" means any species of organism in the plant kingdom including, but not restricted to, trees, shrubs, flowers, grasses, algae and fungi.

      (10)     "Possession" means the personal holding of any endangered or threatened species of plant or animal or parts thereof by any person, or possession of that species on his or her property, land, vehicle, home, place of business, or place of work.

      (11)     "Species" means any species or subspecies of scientifically described plant or animal.

      (12)     "Take" means to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such activity.

      (13)     "Threatened species" means any species which is likely to become an endangered species within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range.

      (14)     "Trust Territory" means the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 5; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 105.

Editor's note:  Subsections were rearranged in alphabetical order in the 1982 edition of this code.

      306.  Prohibited acts.
     It is prohibited for any person to take, engage in commercial activity with, hold possession of, or export any threatened or endangered species of plant or animal or parts thereof, so listed in this chapter or in any regulation issued in accordance with this chapter, except in accordance with the exceptions listed in sections 307 through 312 of this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 6; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 106.

      307.  Exception - Scientific uses.
     This chapter shall not apply to the taking, possession of, or export of species of endangered or threatened plants and animals or parts thereof for scientific purposes, providing the person or persons involved apply for and are issued a permit for such activity by the director of Resources and Development in accordance with regulations governing the issuance of such permits.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(1); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(1).

      308.  Exception - Public nuisances; Public safety.
     This chapter shall not apply to any species of endangered or threatened plant or animal if that plant or animal becomes a public nuisance or public safety factor, providing that any remedial action be taken only by the Trust Territory government and in accordance with regulations issued in accordance with this chapter for this purpose.
 
Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(2); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(2).

      309.  Exception - Controlled farming.
     This chapter shall not apply to those species of endangered or threatened plants and animals or parts thereof which have been taken under authority of section 307 of this chapter and raised successfully in commercial quantities under controlled conditions of aquaculture, mariculture, game farming, agriculture or horticulture, providing that the individuals or quantity lots of these species or parts thereof are identified and identifiable as having been raised under these controlled conditions, such identification to be in accordance with regulations issued under this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(3); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(3).

      310.  Exception - Subsistence uses.
     This chapter shall not apply in those cases where the director has determined that the taking from certain islands of certain species of endangered or threatened plants or animals for subsistence food or for old traditional uses does not further endanger the species involved; provided, that the species or parts thereof involved are not subjected to commercial activity nor exported; and further provided, that this exception will only apply to the bona fide indigenous inhabitants of the islands excepted by the director.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(4); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(4).

      311.  Exception - Innocent possession.
     This chapter shall not apply to any person in innocent possession of any species of endangered or threatened plant or animal or parts thereof, except that such plants or animals or parts thereof will be confiscated by the Trust Territory and disposed of in accordance with regulations issued under this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(5); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(5).

      312.  Exception - Prior possession.
     This chapter will not apply to any nonliving species of endangered or threatened plant or animal or parts thereof, if a person was in possession of same prior to this chapter becoming law; and provided, that the person gives adequate evidence of such prior possession in accordance with criteria contained in regulations issued in accordance with this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 7(6); TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 107(6).

      313.  Regulations.
     The director of Resources and Development shall issue regulations, subject to the approval of the High Commissioner, applying to this chapter and including a listing of the species of endangered and threatened plants and animals of the Trust Territory.  These regulations shall have the force and effect of law.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 8; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 108.

      314.  Importation of endangered species.
     In anticipation of international cooperation and reciprocation, it is prohibited to import into the Trust Territory any species of endangered or threatened plant or animal or parts thereof which is listed by the convention on international trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora.  This list may be a part of the regulations applying to this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 9; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 109.

      315.  Importation of exotic plants and animals.
     Since exotic plants and animals not already established in the Trust Territory can cause ecological upsets, compete with, prey upon, and introduce serious or devastating diseases which could further endanger our indigenous plants and animals or drive them to extinction, it is prohibited to import such exotic plants and animals or parts thereof into the Trust Territory except under permit by the director as defined in the regulations authorized by this chapter, except that beneficial insects and biological control microorganisms may be imported in accordance with the Trust Territory plant and animal quarantine laws.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 10; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 110.

      316.  Confiscation of plants, equipment, etc., for violations.
     Any endangered species of plant or animal or parts thereof, held by any person in contravention of any of the other sections of this chapter, may be confiscated by the Trust Territory government and disposed of in accordance with the regulations applying to this chapter, and further, any gun, weapon, spear, knife, trap, net, fishing gear, boat, engine, or vehicle used for the purpose of violating any of the provisions or regulations of this chapter may be confiscated and disposed of by the Trust Territory Government in accordance with the regulations applying to this chapter.

Source:  COM PL 6-55 11; TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 111.

      317.  Penalties for violation of chapter.
     Any person found guilty of violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be fined not more than $10,000, or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.
 
Source:  COM PL 6-55 12, TT Code 1980, 45 TTC 112.