Fish-farming company offered money for Lummi Nation’s silence about net pens, letters show | The Seattle Times

Pathetic. we need to ban fish farms now.

Cooke Aquaculture offered the Lummi Nation a premium price for the fish it caught that had escaped from Cooke pens, in exchange for keeping silent about a ban on net pen Atlantic salmon farms in Washington. The tribe called the offer “insulting.”

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/environment/fish-farming-company-offered-money-for-lummi-nations-silence-about-net-pens-letters-show/?utm_source=The+Seattle+Times&utm_campaign=8fa0c0570a-Morning_Brief_10_12_2017&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5beb38b61e-8fa0c0570a-121946289

A disgrace: Ten million salmon thrown away by fish farm industry in last year alone – The Herald Scotland

The world of salmon farming in Scotland. Wonder what our statistics are:

THE Scottish fish farming industry has admitted that it threw away up to ten million salmon last year – nearly a quarter of its stock – because of diseases, parasites and other problems.

Official figures reveal the tonnages of dead fish that had to be disposed of has more than doubled from 10,599 in 2013 to a record high of 22,479 in 2016. Most are transported south to be burnt at an incinerator in Widnes near Warrington in northwest England.

 

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/15583156.A_disgrace__ten_million_salmon_thrown_away_by_fish_farm_industry_in_last_year_alone/?ref=mr&lp=6

Ecology solicits comments on net pen guidelines – PT Leader

Worth monitoring. Will not include members of NGOs on the core panel.Only Dept. of Ecology employees. We will be keeping a close eye on their output. The project will take over a year to complete.

When the state Department of Ecology kicked off the new year by soliciting early input on a net pen management project, it reawakened concerns among fish conservationists. Project coordinator Cedar Bouta sent out an email Jan. 4 inviting public input. The email explained that the departments of Ecology, Agriculture and Fish & Wildlife are replacing the state’s 30-year-old management recommendations for commercial marine finfish aquaculture, or net pens, in collaboration with the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science…. According to Bouta, the project’s goal is to update the state’s guidance for the industry and coastal managers – including state and local government regulators – and provide them with the most current scientific data and methods…. Comments due by March 4. Kirk Boxleitner reports. (Port Townsend Leader)

http://www.ptleader.com/news/ecology-solicits-comments-on-net-pen-guidelines/article_2d3c880e-fe0a-11e6-a68a-03e87de5c947.html

INPUT NEEDED: State Ecology Netpen Guidelines being updated – March 4 deadline

New commercial fish farm (net pen) management tools being are developed by the Department of Ecology:

Provide your input on project scoping by March 4

Washington’s 30-year old management guidelines for commercial, marine fish farms (net pens) are getting an overhaul. (This is not about whether net pens are to be allowed or not, it’s about updating best practices management of the pens).

Ecology has partnered with the state departments of Fish & Wildlife and Agriculture, and the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science to write new management recommendations useful for the industry and coastal managers – including state and local government regulators.

The project is designed to provide up-to-date information on this use and better understand the concern of citizens. Results will help ensure any new facilities are sited and operated consistent with current science and modern management practices. It is not designed to determine whether or not future net pens will be allowed (See Frequently Asked Questions).

The planning team is just getting started, and they want your input

The multi-year project is just getting underway and you are invited to provide input on early decisions made by the project team. Two documents are available for review and comment.

  1. A summary of draft scoping decisions that describes early decisions made by the team regarding:
  • Geographic and topical scope
  • Scientific and technical review
  • Outreach and opportunities for interested parties to influence the outcome

 

  1. A writing outline that will guide the project team through fact-finding and identification of suitable safeguards and management practices. The team is especially interested in feedback on topics you would like to see addressed in the final document.

 

View and download these documents on the project website.

Comments accepted now through March 4.

 

Submit input to:

Ms. Cedar Bouta

Shorelands and Environmental Assistance Program

WA Dept. of Ecology

P.O. Box 47600

Lacey, WA 98504-7600.

Email: Cedar.Bouta@ecy.wa.gov

 

Visit the project webpage to learn more.

Subscribe to the listserv to get email updates and make sure you have the latest information

First Hard Proof that Net Pen Salmon Eat Wild Species – Alexandra Morton

The raging controversy over net pens, both here and in Canada, just got a bit more intense. The first hard evidence that net pen salmon are eating wild stocks of herring, that we as taxpayers are paying millions to try and restore. The net pen fish are probably also eating other juvenile wild fish. As one example of what this might mean to us, there have been oldtime fishermen I’ve spoken to, who claim that when the net pens went in on south side of Bainbridge Island, fishing collapsed in Agate Pass. Coincidence? Maybe. But no serious study has ever been made, that I can find, on whether there were problems caused by the net pens being introduced there.

This may end up being one of the most important environmental news stories of the year for the Pacific Northwest, especially at this point in time, due to the Washington State Department of Ecology continuing it’s PR campaign to say that net pens are ecologically ok for Puget Sound waters. It’s time to continue the call for a total ban on net pens throughout our Sound, and the greater Salish Sea. The little amount of science having been done on this industry is incomplete, and focuses only on whether the sea bottom, directly under and around the pens is restoreable. NOAA has never (from what I’ve tried to find) looked at the wider issues that implementation of pens may pose on wild stocks, either of salmon or herring, let alone whether locations where pens have been tried and failed, have ever recovered as NOAA claims they should. They can start right here in Port Townsend Bay, and investigate the sands just below where the last pens were located some decades ago.

UPDATE: since this article a person who is employed by an aquaculture operation, laughed off my concerns about farmed fish eating herring and wild stocks. “Of course they do!” was his answer. I had to remind him that this is the way this always goes. The industry denies any impact until confronted with their impact, then tries to laugh it off or bring out their shills to discount any attempt to bring science (that they don’t control) to the table.  Sorry friend, but your lack of science to support your industry is going to ultimately bring you down. Live it up while you can.

“On August 23, 2016 I put a Go Pro camera on a pole and submerged it in a salmon farm run by Marine Harvest.”

https://www.voyageforsalmon.ca/first-hard-evidence/

Gulf Of Mexico Open For Fish-Farming Business – NPR

NOAA continues its promotion of the aquaculture fish farming industry. Since the government destroyed huge swaths of the Gulf with its lack of stiff enforcement of oil drilling, now it has decided that fish farming there is a great idea. No environmentalists  anywhere in the world that have looked at this industry think it’s a good idea. And the fish farming industry and NOAA are targeting  opening  up the Salish Sea for more fish farming also.  Their science on it, when you read it, is missing key issues of investigation, such as long term affects of the bottom and the general larger habitat around the fish. The experience of fish farming in British Columbia, Norway and other locations, is one of vast overuse of antibiotics, needed because of dense packing in the cages, which create a vector for disease, like sea lice infestations that are infecting wild stocks that pass by the cages. Escaped farm fish compete with native species, coverups of massive problems with disease by the highly secretive farming industry and smear campaigns for highly credible scientists and their labs, including using the Government of Canada to arbitrarily shut down the labs involved after they publish their results (under the Harper and Christie government two and three  years ago) and a basic lack of concern for anything but their own bottom lines. While I support much of what NOAA does, this area is very suspiciously looking like it has been corrupted by the industry that it is supposed to be impartially regulating.

This is yet another example of a Democratic administration doing exactly what we would expect from a Republican one. It is the kind of arrogance towards our shared environment and the people of the Gulf that fuels the anger of the electorate towards Washington D.C. and the administrators there that choose business over the environment time and time again.  It’s worth remembering that Obama opened up offshore oil drilling against environmentalists concerns just weeks before the Gulf Spill in March 2010, saying it was ‘safe’ and that we had great safeguards. He was proven wrong in May of that year. He has since reopened drilling off the coast, even after the BP spill, against the wishes of Governors of those coastal states affected by the decision. Now he is opening up Gulf waters for large scale fish pens. We are also targeted for that same treatment, as fish farms are proposed west of Port Angeles at present time. The State demanded that counties not ban fish farming in their Shoreline Master Programs, and actually have held up approval of the Jefferson County SMP over that very issue. Luckily we have had Phil Johnson an ex-fisherman, fighting this issue with the State, but at present it is still legal to open a fish farm in Jefferson County, over the objections of both a scientific panel and a citizen advisory group of 20 citizens that included a shellfish farmer. When I questioned the previous head of the State of Washington Department of Ecology, he had no idea that it was even a problem worth addressing. The latest head of DOE is a lawyer as well as an administrator and she is unwilling to seriously discuss reversing her department’s decision.

To be clear, while I’m  disappointed in the administration for allowing this, voting in the opposition will simply make it worse, as the Republicans have never seen an environmental law they like. Just look at Flint Michigan for a great example of Republican oversight of the environment.  Our best efforts are to fight decisions like this in the courts, contact our representatives to make them aware of the public feelings on the issue, make it an issue at elections, and elect people like Phil Johnson who will fight against the influence of big money industries trading off the environment and our wild fish for short term profits.

To their credit, NPR does point out the  criticisms of this decision.

The Gulf of Mexico is now open for commercial fish farming. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced last month that, for the first time in the U.S., companies can apply to set up fish farms in federal waters. The idea is to compete with hard-to-regulate foreign imports. But opening the Gulf to aquaculture won’t be cheap, and it could pose environmental problems. Tegan Wendland reports. (NPR)

http://www.kplu.org/post/gulf-mexico-open-fish-farming-business

New film on Salmon Piscine Reovirus Outbreak

While Canadian officials stonewall the publication of scientific data that shows that Piscine Reovirus in net pen raised Atlantic salmon appears to be spreading to wild stocks, Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich’s keep working to get the news out. Why  is this important? Because our Department of Ecology and Department of Fish and Wildlife do not seem to have a sense of urgency on this issue, which could easily spread down here. Over 70% of the samples of store bought salmon in BC appear to be infected by the virus.

Filmmaker Twyla Roscovich traveled to Norway to ask the remaining experts who have not been forcibly silenced on this issue.  A very disturbing report from the scientists actually doing the research in Norway.

A new short film on piscine reovirus in wild salmon

 

Asking Norway about the Piscine Reovirus

https://vimeo.com/70399899

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