Saturday, 23 December 2017

Bantry Bay Update

Salmon Watch Ireland received the following updated decisions of the Aquaculture Appeals Board in relation to our objection to a licence granted to Marine Harvest Ireland for Shot Head in Bantry Bay. The report of the Chairman of the Oral Hearing has determined that Marine Harvest Ireland must submit additional information regarding a number of issues highlighted at the oral hearing. This is a decision which is positive and certainly increases the environmental burden of proof which Marine Harvest have to reach if a licence is to be granted. We await these additional Environmental Impact Assessments and Appropriate Assessments and will be stringently defending our position that open net salmon farming is not sustainable or environmentally appropriate.

The main recommendations from the Chairman are as follows:

Further to section 59 of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Chair of the Oral Hearing recommends as follows:
Conditional upon the results of the supplemental EIA and desk-top studies recommended immediately below, the Board should issue an aquaculture licence for the Shot Head facility (Ref: T05/555) pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, subject to the conditions identified below.
Before making a determination pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Board should request a supplemental EIS addressing the following matters:
  • The risk of sea-lice infestation of wild salmonids migrating from/to the  Dromagowlane and Trafask Rivers, and any resulting implications for local freshwater pearl mussel populations, based on available research and data;
  • An assessment of the potential impact of salmon farm waste on water quality, having particular regard to the maintenance of ‘good water status’ as required under the WFD; and
Before making a determination pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Board should conduct desk-top studies of the following matters, which may indicate the need for supplemental appropriate assessment (AA) screening for such matters:

  • An assessment of the otter population of the Dromagowlane and Trafask catchments, and (if necessary) assessment of potential impacts on otters, including the potential impact of declining wild salmon stocks;
  • The potential impacts upon common seal populations in the Glengarriff Harbour and Woodland SAC; and
  • The potential impacts upon wild birds within nearby SPAs.




·        Before making a determination pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Board should make every effort to consider the potential impacts of large-scale farmed salmon escapes.

·         If, on the basis of such further information, the Board should decide to grant an aquaculture licence pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Board should consider the inclusion of appropriate conditions requiring a change to the production schedule in order to protect migrating wild salmon and sea trout smolts, or otherwise to control stocking densities at the time of wild salmonid migration, for example by means of early harvesting of mature salmon.   
·        If, on the basis of such further information, the Board should decide to grant an aquaculture licence pursuant to section 40(4) of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1997, the Board should include conditions to change the current production limit to one based on a maximum allowable biomass of 2,800 tonnes.



 

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Lfc4b3IlyCrvTojQwqyV73YYIaIAjMBF (Full Oral Hearing Report)

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Atlantic Salmon Lost at Sea Invitation


Salmon Watch Ireland would like to invite you to a viewing of Lost at Sea in Limerick on the 28th Dec 2017. This is a most worthwhile experience as it gives anglers and interested parties an opportunity to experience and comment on the various factors which affect Atlantic salmon on their oceanic journey. Please RSVP to address below.