Scot­land no place to in­vest says Grieg boss

Fish Farmer - - United Kingdom News -

SCOT­LAND’S salmon farm­ing sec­tor con­tin­ues to be ham­pered by plan­ning rules dic­tated by en­vi­ron­men­tal in­ter­ests, said Grieg Seafood direc­tor Sig­urd Pet­tersen.

The Scot­tish gov­ern­ment is wrong in mak­ing the Scot­tish En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency (SEPA) the reg­u­la­tor of fish farm­ing be­cause its brief is to pro­tect the en­vi­ron­ment, Pet­tersen told the Her­ald.

‘Farm­ing of any kind has some im­pact on the en­vi­ron­ment,’ he said but reg­u­la­tory bod­ies need to ac­com­mo­date economic in­ter­ests with en­vi­ron­men­tal ones.

SEPA, said Pet­tersen, has no brief or frame­work that allows it to bal­ance economic ben­e­fits against en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact.

‘So any en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact is con­sid­ered ‘bad’ and plans for new farm sites get re­jected re­peat­edly on en­vi­ron­men­tal grounds.

‘We have tried again and again to find ad­di­tional sites on the west coast of Scot­land and we have had our ap­pli­ca­tions re­jected time after time.

‘When my friends in Scan­di­navia ask me if Scot­land is a good place for them to con­sider in­vest­ing in, I have to tell them no, not un­der cur­rent cir­cum­stances,’ he said.

The is­sue will not be solved un­til Scot­tish politi­cians re­alise that the sec­tor has a prob­lem that re­quires a po­lit­i­cal so­lu­tion.

Above: Sig­urd Pet­tersen

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