After the draft salmon industry growth plan was released on Thursday, the State Government has announced that Huon Aquaculture has received an environmental monitoring permit to explore the potential for salmon farming on the east coast of South Bruny Island.
Minister for Primary Industries and Water Jeremy Rockliff said the exploration — including an area more than 6km off the coast of South Bruny Island — reflected the commitment of the growth plan for future “grow zones” to be mainly oceanic rather than estuarine.
“This permit is part of the preliminary investigation process covering areas like water temperature, tidal flow and depth and also includes extensive local community consultation,” he said.
“This is all about getting the balance right and the plan relates to all aspects of the industry from hatchery to harvest, research and development, skills and also future planning.”
Tassal already has two oceanic sites, one near Nubeena and the other in the Channel.
It also has plans underway for one west of Wedge Island near Nubeena.
Tassal chief executive Mark Ryan reiterated the importance of the industry working together.
“As all three salmon companies are committed to oceanic development and growing larger smolt on land, it is critical that industry works together under a common vision to remain world leaders in transparency, innovation and environmental stewardship,” he said.
Petuna acting chief executive David Wood said his company supported the growth plan.
“It will hopefully also help to build the community’s confidence in the environmental regulation and transparency of the aquaculture industry in Tasmania,” he said.
The Government’s draft salmon industry growth plan bans any new fish farms along the state’s East Coast — excluding the already approved Tassal operation at Okehampton Bay — and on large parts of the northern Tasmanian coast.