Tromsø may over­turn ban

Fish Farmer - - News -

A CON­TRO­VER­SIAL de­ci­sion by Tromsø City coun­cil late last year to ban any fur­ther open fish farm­ing inside its mu­nic­i­pal zone may yet be over­turned.

The Labour party on the coun­cil, which makes up the largest po­lit­i­cal group inside a largely left lean­ing coali­tion, has said it will look again at the rul­ing, which stip­u­lates that any new fish farms should be en­closed or based on land.

Labour leader Jarle Heit­mann told iTromsø, the north­ern Nor­we­gian city’s main news­pa­per, that he had lis­tened to ob­jec­tions from the fish farm­ing in­dus­try and had taken on board com­ments that much of the tech­nol­ogy for to­tal closed farms was still in the de­vel­op­ment stage.

He said he would hold a party con­fer­ence on the is­sue af­ter mem­bers had met rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the aqua­cul­ture in­dus­try.

‘We do want to learn more,’ he told iTromsø. ‘We agree, along with the in­dus­try, that there must be en­vi­ron­men­tal con­sid­er­a­tions, but we may have to find so­lu­tions other than de­mand­ing that all new plants should be en­closed.’

Marit Bærøe, re­gional man­ager for Seafood Nor­way’s Depart­ment for Aqua­cul­ture in the north of the coun­try , said she was pleased that the party was re­con­sid­er­ing its stance.

‘It is very, very pos­i­tive,’ she added. ‘It has been scary to us that lo­cal politi­cians are sit­ting with such neg­a­tive at­ti­tudes to­wards an in­dus­try that is very im­por­tant (eco­nom­i­cally).’

Im­me­di­ately af­ter the city coun­cil’s de­ci­sion in Novem­ber, there was a ma­jor back­lash from the in­dus­try and na­tional (mainly con­ser­va­tive) politi­cians.

Fish­eries min­is­ter Harald Tom Nesvik said it sent out all the wrong sig­nals to fu­ture in­vestors, while Nor­way Royal Salmon, which had been plan­ning fur­ther in­vest­ment to build a new salmon waste fa­cil­ity in Tromsø, warned it may have to re­con­sider that de­ci­sion.

Above: Nor­we­gian fish­eries min­is­ter Harald Tom Nesvik

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