US sees future in offshore fish farming
MOVES in the US to develop offshore fish farms in federal waters are being backed by the Trump administration.
The US Commerce Department is to hold meetings around the country throughout November to talk about its strategic plan for fish farms, according to a report by Alaskafishradio.
The Advancing the Quality and Understanding of American Aquaculture (AQUAA) Act was introduced in the summer to facilitate the permitting process for aquaculture farms in federal waters, and fund research and development to advance the aquaculture industry.
The new National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) director, Chris Oliver, said at a recent session in Juneau, Alaska, that wild harvests can’t keep up with global demand.
‘Aquaculture is going to be where the major increases in seafood production occur, whether it happens in foreign countries or in United States waters,’ he said.
Alaska bans fish farming in state waters, but Trump is pushing for sites in federally controlled waters, from three to 200 miles offshore.
Under Secretary of Commerce Timothy Gallaudet also backed the development of fish farms.
‘Some of the changes in the environment are affecting fish stocks,’ he said. ‘They are either moving or they’re not thriving and so this aquaculture, done the right way and scientifically based, provides a means for employment of fishermen who are losing some of their gain through these changing conditions.’