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Green Light For Unregulated Fish Farm Expansion

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Tags: Fish Farms, Marine Environment, Environment

Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Environment spokesperson

Minister Rockliff has ruled out any further assessment of the impacts of fish farming in Okehampton Bay, despite the fact that there’s been no environmental baseline study of salmon farming impacts undertaken for 20 years.

In the last 20 years, East Coast waters have become a global warming hotspot. There’s been dramatic changes in that marine environment, as well as in capacity for fisheries.

Minister Rockliff has told the Greens that the Huon and D’Entrecasteaux waterways have “similar environmental characteristics  to Okehampton Bay”.  He then stated that no specific modelling of fish farming impacts on local conditions would be needed.

The Minister has decreed industry self-monitoring is enough to guarantee “sustainable operation” for the proposed development, despite its scale. Tassal are proposing close to a million salmon in the clear waters of Okehampton Bay.

The East Coast community are being faced with serious impacts on their clear waters and existing fishing industries by the Okehampton Bay proposal. Minister Rockliff's confirmation the expansion will essentially be unregulated will do nothing to relieve their fears.

This is a community that has had this proposal thrust upon them with no consultation. Minister Rockliff needs to meet with residents, hear their concerns, and begin an open environmental, social and economic impact assessment of this development.