Nordic

Nordic takes next step forward in California

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The Humboldt County Planning Commission, in California, United States (US) voted to certify the Environmental Impact Report (EIR), a comprehensive initial step in the Nordic Aquafarms (NAF) permitting process. In addition to that certification, the commission also approved the coastal development permit for Terrestrial Development.

“We would like to convey our appreciation for the many hours of collaborative work done by the Humboldt Bay Harbor Recreation and Conservation District, and the County of Humboldt on this Environmental Impact Report,” said Brenda Chandler, Nordic’s Interim CEO and CFO.

“We consider this certification to be the first of many steps forward to provide a fresh, high quality seafood product, using environmentally sound and state of the art RAS technology, close to consumers on the West Coast of the United States.”

Opportunity to hear the concerns

Chandler states that through the EIR, the company have had the opportunity to hear the concerns of and address the issues of environmental groups and other interested parties during this first step. “We thank them; and our partners, supporters, and the community for their collaborative efforts in helping us make this the best project for Humboldt County,” Chandler states.

“The support from those that took the time to come and speak at the public hearing, as well as send letters of support is greatly appreciated. It is a reminder of how deeply meaningful our presence in the community will be,” she said.

“According to them, being transparent and readily available to the community has always been at the core of Nordic’s work on the Samoa Project these past three years.”

“With each step forward, we will continue to engage in open dialogue and strengthen our relationship with the community,” they said.

The vision of a resilient food system with sustainable, environmentally friendly practices is for them an exciting prospect to share with evolving aquaculture programs in the local colleges and workforce development programs.

Chandler states that they “see a region that is ready to walk with us into a new opportunity to thrive, creating a California brand of close-to-market fish, and it strengthens our commitment to a successful project.”

Next step in the permitting process

With the EIR certified, Nordic will now go before the California Coastal Commission and the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board for the next step in the permitting process.

“We look forward to working with the community as we transform a brownfield site into a fish farm that will produce a fresh, top-quality seafood product. Our philosophy is to approach environmental and social goals with balance,” said Chandler. Sustainable aquaculture is a solution, a solution to providing healthy protein in an environmentally sound, balanced way.”

Recently assumed

This news arrives some weeks after the company’s announcement the change in US leadership: Brenda Chandler, who has served as Nordic’s Chief Financial Officer for the past three and a half years, has been appointed interim CEO.

Chandler assumed her new position and splits her time between Humboldt, California and the Nordic corporate office in Portland, Maine. Erik Heim and Marianne Naess have left the company to pursue other opportunities.

“Bernt Olav Rottingsnes, the CEO and Chairman of the Board for parent company, Nordic Aquafarms Group, continue to serve as Chairman of Nordic Aquafarms, while the remainder of the company leadership and staff in California and Maine remain unchanged.”

Chandler is a Maine native with family roots in Belfast and Jonesport. She joined Nordic Aquafarms as Chief Financial Officer in March 2019 after a broad and successful career in the technology and paper sectors. She has progressive experience in treasury, risk management, finance, accounting and real estate.

She has also served on the boards of non-profit youth organizations whose mission is enabling education for “at risk” teens.  Chandler holds Bachelor of Science and Associate of Science degrees from the University of Maine at Augusta.

Nordic Aquafarms develop land-based seafood production close to the large markets and has already established production of salmon in Fredrikstad, Norway, where are the company corporate headquarters, and yellowtail kingfishin Hanstholm, Denmark.

In the US they have a bi-costal strategy with projects in Maine and California, and they have an open eye for projects in Asia.

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