Mass es­cape de­lays new farm plan

Fish Farmer - - World News -

AN ap­pli­ca­tion by Cooke Aqua­cul­ture to build a new farm has been put on hold, fol­low­ing a mass es­cape of salmon from one of its other farms.

The com­pany lost thou­sands of fish in August from a pen in Sk­agit County, Wash­ing­ton, hold­ing 305,000 salmon.

Cooke, which hopes to site a new farm in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, asked plan­ning of­fi­cials that a September hear­ing for a project per­mit be post­poned as it deals with the mass es­cape of thou­sands of fish at its other fa­cil­ity.

Cooke has re­cov­ered more than 122,000 fish. The Lummi tribe says its an­glers have caught an­other 20,000 fish, re­ported lo­cal me­dia.

Cooke is propos­ing to build 14 float­ing cir­cu­lar net pens about 1 ½ miles off­shore.

It would move cur­rent op­er­a­tions from Port An­ge­les Har­bour and in­crease pro­duc­tion by 20 per cent.

Wash­ing­ton state gover­nor Jay Inslee placed a mora­to­rium on net pen per­mits un­til an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the es­cape is com­pleted.

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