Grieg NL’s Pla­cen­tia Bay aqua­cul­ture project re­leased from en­vi­ron­men­tal as­sess­ment

The Southern Gazette - - Front Page - BY COLIN FAR­RELL MARYS­TOWN, N.L. Colin.far­[email protected]­erngazette.ca Colin.far­[email protected]­erngazette.ca

The pur­posed Pla­cen­tia Bay aqua­cul­ture project by Grieg NL has been re­leased from en­vi­ron­ment as­sess­ment, the Depart­ment of Mu­nic­i­pal Af­fairs and En­vi­ron­ment an­nounced on Thurs­day, Sept. 6.

In a news re­lease, the depart­ment said it in­formed Grieg NL Nurs­eries Ltd. and Grieg NL Sea­farms Ltd. that the En­vi­ron­men­tal Im­pact State­ment was deemed ac­cept­able and that the project may pro­ceed sub­ject to the con­di­tions and all other leg­isla­tive re­quire­ments such as the nec­es­sary per­mits, li­cences, and ap­provals.

Ad­di­tion­ally, the pro­po­nent was pro­vided with the reg­u­la­tory and mit­iga­tive ad­vice col­lected from the re­view­ing fed­eral and pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment agen­cies through­out the sci­en­tific and tech­ni­cal as­sess­ment of the project.

Grieg NL was ad­vised on Nov. 8, 2017 that an EIS would be re­quired for the project, which in­cludes a salmon hatch­ery in Marys­town and 11 sea cages in Pla­cen­tia Bay.

Pla­cen­tia West-Belle­vue MHA Mark Browne is call­ing the de­ci­sion by the prov­ince wel­comed news for Pla­cen­tia Bay.

“This is an im­por­tant step in the evolution of this aqua­cul­ture project, which will re­sult in hun­dreds of jobs from both the project it­self and the re­lated sup­ply in­dus­tries,” he said in an e-mailed state­ment to The South­ern Gazette.

“Hav­ing a land-based hatch­ery in Marys­town with ad­ja­cent ma­rine sites in Pla­cen­tia Bay will trans­form our lo­cal econ­omy in a pos­i­tive way. Sta­bil­ity and con­ti­nu­ity will mean jobs at home for many peo­ple. This is in­deed good news and com­ple­ments work un­der­way to re­de­velop the former Marys­town Shipyard into an Aqua­cul­ture Sup­ply Hub.”

Burin-Grand Bank MHA Carol Anne Ha­ley is also cel­e­brat­ing the depart­ment’s de­ci­sion.

“We have over­come a huge hur­dle in the on­go­ing process of es­tab­lish­ing Grieg Sea­Farms as a ma­jor player in the econ­omy of the Burin Penin­sula, and in­deed, the whole prov­ince.”

Ha­ley said that the news also means good thing to the peo­ple she rep­re­sents in St. Lawrence, “where year-round pro­cess­ing of salmon is ex­pected to take place.”

She added the di­rect jobs, as well as the many eco­nomic spin-offs re­sult­ing from the aqua­cul­ture project could serve the Burin Penin­sula for many years to come.

This is an im­por­tant step in the evolution of this aqua­cul­ture project, which will re­sult in hun­dreds of jobs from both the project it­self and the re­lated sup­ply in­dus­tries.

Town’s po­si­tion

Marys­town Mayor Sam Sy­nard said it is time for the project to pro­ceed.

“Grieg sea farms has gone through a rig­or­ous, lengthy and de­tailed en­vi­ron­men­tal as­sess­ment process … Let’s get on to the next stage — the con­struc­tion phase,” Sy­nard said. “When it’s all up and run­ning its go­ing to cre­ate 600 jobs in Pla­cen­tia Bay, and an­other 1,200 spinoff jobs.”

He said the project would also re­sult in the Marys­town Shipyard be­ing re­ac­ti­vated to serve as a sup­ply base for aqua­cul­ture projects through­out Canada, creat­ing “an­other cou­ple hun­dred jobs.”

Sy­nard said the an­nounce­ment will bet­ter po­si­tion the town in its ef­forts to pur­chase the fa­cil­ity, which is cur­rently owned by Kiewit.

“We are in dis­cus­sions as we speak with Kiewit to pur­chase the shipyard, and we are in dis­cus­sions with a Nor­we­gian com­pany as we speak to lease the shipyard from us once we ac­quire own­er­ship.”

TELE­GRAM FILE PHOTO

Pla­cen­tia West-Belle­vue MHA Mark Browne.

SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

Burin-Grand Bank MHA Carol Anne Ha­ley.

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