Fish Farming at Oakhampton (East Coast)

From our Director – Peter McGlone

     Tasmania's east coast environment, economic and social values are likely to be severely damaged by the establishment of fin fish farms in its marine environment. This industry would create visual and noise pollution, exclude other users and dump large amounts of waste into the marine environment.

Even if one ignores all the other problems associated with this zone, the relevant marine farming development plan [Great Oyster Bay and Mercury Passage Marine Farming Development Plan October 1998 (Reviewed November 2007) (Modified 17 May 2010)] itself states that water temperatures "... are considered suitable for farming finfish during most summer periods ...". What happens when the water temperatures are not suitable?

Climate change 2 and warming sea temperatures are likely to make this site less suitable and may result in large-scale fish mortality events. Tourism, fishing and a variety of recreational activities associated with the coastal and marine environment are vital part of the east coast. Given the widespread public concern expressed about the proposed expansion of the Tasmanian fish farming industry into the east coast, it is obvious that many in the wider community hold the view that the introduction of fish farms into this part of Tasmania is inappropriate. 

 There is an increasing amount of anecdotal evidence (from the Tasmanian Abalone Council for example) that raises concerns about sedimentation in the south east being related to finfish farms (along with changes to macroalgae communities).