New Net Pen Aquaculture Proposed on Strait near Twin & Lyre Rivers

Pacific Seafood has proposed a sea cage operations on the Strait of Juan de Fuca 20 miles west of Port Angeles. The site is proposed to produce up to 5000 lbs of Steelhead or Atlantic Salmon.

The site, between the Lyre and the Twin rivers, will take up 180 acres of sea space, The spot is two miles west of the Twin and 3 miles east of the Lyre.

The cages will be anchored between 50 and 150 feet deep, in open exposed waters. An alternative site is in the lee of Pillar Point, 8 miles west.

The plan at present calls for up to 1.7 Million fish (depending on species) to be caged at the site.

It is unclear where this proposal sits with the county. It appears to be a new proposal. The timing, as the county prepares it’s SMP, is interesting, to say the least. The ability of this site to create a problem with sea lice is pointed out in the company’s documentation, but dismissed as being easy to fix with freshwater. If it were that simple, you would think that British Columbia wouldn’t be up in arms over this issue. Coming on the heels of opening up the Elwha to replenish wild stocks, this seems to be an ill timed proposal, to say the least.

Coincidentally today, this reporter was interviewing Jim McEntire, who is running for Clallam County Commissioner, a role that would be very influential in approving these pens. He was not asked specifically about this proposal, but about netpens in general, and he said that he did not know ‘a lot about net pens. We were talking specifically about the possibility of supporting moving netpens onshore, as is being discussed in Jefferson County…

“ I don’t know if it’s a question of scale… if you have multiple locations that it is a way to avoid some of the environmental downsides.’ Jim went on to say that understanding the business model issues in this was important as, “in no way am I wanting to choke off any kind of commercial activity. The question becomes how to best do it, to minimize the effects.”

I was unable to get input from Linda Barnfarther or Steve Tharinger prior to posting this news.

More news on this as it becomes available. We hope to get more feedback on this tomorrow.

21 Responses

  1. […] Additional information from the Olympic Peninsula Environmental News blog:… […]

  2. Hi;

    Why is my response to Dennis Reid on September 27th still awaiting moderation? My response if factual and polite. Others that have posted since have been ok’d??

    I hope this site is not being purposely selective?


    RESPONSE FROM ALF – Chris, I’ve had to deal with a family health crisis, so I have not been tending to the site closely since Friday as I have had other issues to work on. Some of your comments apparently are automatically accepted and I’m not quite sure why that is. If your comments can be automatically accepted you would think it would do so each time. So I’ll look into this, but not today. So go for it.

    But to answer your question, yes, I do selectively decide who can post, but did not filter your posts. I only do so because I want this site to be a place of dialogue, not ranting. I subscribe to too many blogs that allow any lunatic to post any hateful speech or rant they want. Since I run this site at my cost, with no commercial advertising (at least for now), I’ve chosen to be selective. My prerogative, I suppose.

    • Thanks Alf, I can appreciate your situation. I understand your need to prevent rants or personal attacks on your blog, and am pleased that you’ve provided an opportunity to correct some of the errors made above. Thanks for allowing my post.

  3. In truth, the experts that testified before the Cohen Commission all concluded that wild and farmed salmon could exist compatibly in the same systems and environments. None of them alleged that farmed salmon were responsible or even contributed to the decline of the Frazer River runs. Your shotgun indictment of farmed salmon seems credible but when we examine the parts, they don’t hold up.

  4. Further expansion of salmon / steelhead feedlots is insane given the overwhelming evidence of negative impacts (health, economy, environment, culture) directly related to floating open salmon feedlots cited in the path of migrating salmon. Much of this evidence (500,000 documents) was supplied in advance of the recently-completed Cohen Commission Inquiry rersponsible for identifying probable causes for the decline of wild, Fraser River-origin sockey salmon.

    Refuse to buy feedlot-raised salmon and steelhead, even if it means not having salmon in your diet.

  5. here is another example of international perception of the aquaculture:

    Aquaculture Heart Of Reform In Scottish Parliment

    UK – Plans for increased focus on aquaculture were included in a debate on reform proposals for the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) in the Scottish Parliament.

    In his introductory motion, the Cabinet Secretary responsible for fisheries, Richard Lochhead MSP, urged the Parliament to “support Scotland’s aquaculture industry without burdening it with unnecessary regulation.”

    Noting that Scotland has a well-deserved reputation for producing healthy and high-quality farmed fish and shellfish the Cabinet Secretary, and supporting……………

  6. This is how other countries react to aquaculture:

    Set apart for aquaculture

    Several thousand hectares of coastal lands and seas will soon be gazetted as aquaculture industrial zones to enable the sustainable management of aquaculture development.

    This also includes the substantive on-going preparations by many stakeholders on the proposed Tun Mustapha Marine Park, north of Sabah by 2015.

    “This park will be the largest multiple-use park in South-East Asia,” said………….

  7. My position on this is…. HELL NO !!! not in a million years !!!

    • Well good for you and thanks for offering your “position on this”. A position that’s apparently not backed up by any reason nor fact. It’s just the way you feel – good for you.

  8. The comments from Dennis Reid needs corrections;
    #1 – Dennis omits very important information about Harrison sockeye. Unlike most other Fraser River sockeye, the Harrison stock don’t spend 1 year in freshwater – they outmigrate soon after hatching. They enter saltwater not only in a different year, but also at a different time of year. This may have influenced their high survival but Dennis Reid purposely doesn’t mention this. He also neglects to say that pink salmon from the Fraser River has had very good returns and these salmon do pass by salmon farms.
    #2 – Despite what Dennis believes, BC farmed salmon have been tested for ISA for years and have never tested positive. 4700 samples – zero positives. He ignores fact.
    #3 – Contrary to what Dennis suggests, experts at the Cohen commission all agreed that wild and farmed salmon can coexist in BC.

    Dennis says “don’t wait for science”. That’s quite funny, because the science is already done, and Dennis just chooses to ignore it.

    Dennis (DC) Reid was recently reprimanded by the newspaper he writes too – for making false allegations – but that apparently hasn’t stopped him.


    • Care to comment on the ISA outbreak now found in BC? Now found in Sockeye and Coho Juvenile’s in the Fraser.

      I await your response…

  9. There have been atlantic salmon farms in Washington State for more than 30 years. They have not caused any environmental problems in this State. These farms employ many people and help the local economy. They also help alleviate the huge US seafood deficiet.

    I leave you with web link to governmental internet sites that discusses the true facts of salmon farming in the Pacific Northwest. USA is a huge importer of farmed salmon. I say let’s keep the jobs here!

  10. Washington State has a long history of salmon net pens. It has existed here even longer than British Columbia’s. There have been no significant problems from any of the existing facilities. I challenge anyone to demonstrate scientifically any such problem here in Washington.

    The industry in BC is much bigger and so the few problems that have occurred have been remedied mostly by moving the farms. The anti-fish farm publicity in BC is speculative and not founded in good science. it was originally funded by the commercial fishing industry and later some local environmental groups jumped on the band wagon.

    The allegation that ISA exists in North America is false and a scare tactic to convince uninformed people of the false “danger” of fish farms. Fish farming is a developing world wide phenomena that is helping other nations develop economically and produce jobs.

    Continued resistance here in Washington just makes us more dependent on imports and denies our economy and coastal communities much needed jobs.

  11. Hi Everyone

    I live in BC and I can tell you that you need to stop fish farms before they are put in the water – BC residents are fighting to get them out of the water, and have done so for a very long time.

    There will be some initial low level employment that will drop once the cameras, lights and feeding systems are installed. The financial figures they claim for crops are, in fact about a quarter of what they say. Don’t be fooled.

    They will ignore the problems they have caused all around the world. Your ocean bottom will be fouled, marine mammals will be killed, and your Puget Sound and Olympic Peninsula salmon runs will be in jeopardy. Google the Cohen Commission and read the testimony from the end of August and first 8 days of September.

    The only Fraser River component of the sockeye run that is improving is the Harrison fish. Why? Because they migrate out to the Pacific via Jean de Fuca St where there are no fish farms. Those migrating up Georgia St, are in seriously decline and the fish that make it back die in as high a percentage from disease as 90% going up the Fraser to spawn. You don’t want to put fish farms in Juan de Fuca as it will affect all runs. They put out 60 billion viruses per hour per infected farm.

    MY opinion is that ISA is already in BC – brought from Norway because there is no Pacific ISA other than Chile where they brought it and caused a $2 billion loss and threw 13,000 out of work. Sixty three workers have been killed there.

    Don’t wait for science as it will take a decade. Furthermore, there is pretty much an open door for staff and resources to flow to and from fish farms, government and scientists. These conflicts of interest plague BC, where such conflicts have been demonstrated at the Cohen Commission.

    Go read the David Miller, 2008 article on how Norwegian derivative companies treat anyone who opposes them. See

    You need to stop them before they get in the water.

    DC Reid

  12. It is bad enough that our land food sources are being contaminated by big corporations and now we are going to let them do it to the sea life as well. All in the name of making more money. Don’t eat farmed salmon!!!

    We all need to wake up and say, “Absolutely, No Way!” can a fish farm be installed anywhere!

    Luger Sound is in Crisis. High levels of Fecal Bacteria have closed swimming beaches all over the sound.

    Everyone, please say NO! Loud and Clear!

    OMG…..Atlantic Salmon? For Real? It’s Insane!
    Tori Hansen

  14. I’m glad to say now who I won’t be voting for, and the concept of understanding the business model issues are mere damage control.
    You can make sense of assembly line work, but biological production is entirely different, oh I meant McEntirely different.

  15. After reading about the carnage that salmon farms have brougnt to salmon runs in British Columbia, it would seem that this should be an important issue for Linda Barnfather and Jim McEntire to develop a position on. I would not vote for a candidate that would emperil what remains of our wild salmon runs. As stated in the artlcle, if it was easy to control sea lice, wouldn’t the farms in BC have done that already. Contact Linda Barnfather and Jim McEntire and tell them that you can’t support net pen aquaculture in areas important to wild salmon runs.

    • Good luck everyone in that surrounding area. I live in Clayoquot Sound in the heart of fish farm land and it truly is a nightmare. I think it might be easier to stop them before they begin—so gather as many like-minded supporters as you can and confront the monster NOW.

  16. This is a terrible idea! And to think we are trying to restore native runs by removing dams……then to expose those wild fish to the diseases associated with pen fish culture. Sign me up to oppose this travesty!

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