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Macquarie Harbour Waste Collection Needs Independent Monitoring

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Tags: Marine Environment, Fish Farms, Macquarie Harbour, Oxygen Levels

Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens' Marine Environment spokesperson 

The EPA’s revelation today that there’s been no independent testing of Tassal’s “nappy” waste collection system on their Macquarie Harbour pens, other than a single visual inspection, is a disgrace.

Tassal’s new waste collection technique is unproven and un-trialled, and it’s being used to justify a massive increase in salmon stocking density in what was once a pristine harbour.

The Director of the EPA acknowledged on radio today that oxygen levels in the lower layers of Macquarie Harbour are even worse now than a year ago.  He’s confirmed Tassal’s self-monitoring data, combined with one personal site visit, were all that was needed to convince the EPA to approve the untested system.

Tassal’s operations have caused damage to parts of the World Heritage Area, and their Franklin lease now contains a dead zone and is without Aquaculture Stewardship Certification.  Despite all of this, the Liberals refuse to properly regulate the industry, to protect the environment and the State’s clean green brand.

The Liberals continue to put business interests first, whatever the cost. They have proven themselves appalling custodians of the endangered Maugean skate, and all other life in Macquarie Harbour.

The only way to restore confidence in Tasmanian salmon is to properly regulate the industry and protect the health of our marine environment.  Until this is done, and the legacy damage cleaned up, expansion of the industry should be halted.