Supporting the Tasmanian Salmon Industry

Labor is a strong supporter of the salmon industry.

Labor facilitated and oversaw the growth of the salmon industry into one of Tasmania’s largest and most important industries.

Aquaculture is a significant provider of full time jobs in regional Tasmania at a time when we desperately need full time employment.

Labor has always respected the independent science around fish farming and we accept the Marine Farm Planning Review Panel’s decision on Okehampton Bay.

However, in recognition of growing community interest in the regulation of the salmon industry, we believe the Okehampton lease should be subject to the most stringent environmental regulations and oversight.

The following measures should be imposed on the Okehampton lease and all new salmon leases. There should also be a phase in period of 12 months of these new measures for all existing leases.

  • Labor proposes that maximum stocking densities be reviewed and assessed based on an individual lease, rather than a body of water. This will ensure greater accountability and compliance with environmental conditions for each individual lease.
  • Labor also proposes the Regulator consider net depth and tonnes of fish per farmed hectare when determining fishing density.
  • Remote sensor technology should be used to collect real time environmental data that can be provided to the Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) for reporting to the Regulator each quarter. This report should be made publicly available.
  • The resources of the EPA must be bolstered to allow them to adequately regulate the salmon industry.
  • The frequency of surveys of the seabed should increase to quarterly for each new lease for the first year and twice a year for every year thereafter. This will allow the Regulator to act more swiftly in the event of non-compliance.

Protecting Tasmania’s brand

In addition, Labor also proposes further measures to ensure the salmon industry continues to uphold the integrity of the Tasmanian brand.

  • Finfish licenses that have been in abeyance for longer than 10 years will require a full environmental assessment prior to new applications being considered.
  • Labor will use international best practice to inform the development of a robust biosecurity management plan for the industry.
  • Labor will provide opportunities for new investment to be made using technology and innovation that will ensure Tasmania’s salmon industry maintains competitiveness in the market and meets environmental standards.
  • Labor will develop a plan for future growth of the industry in association with all marine users to fully understand the value of the aquaculture sector to Tasmania.

Protecting Tasmanian jobs

The Liberal Government has eroded community trust in this important industry by failing to provide leadership. This lack of action has also led to a lack of certainty for the industry.

Labor’s policy will continue to support jobs in the salmon industry and support companies to grow sustainably whilst also improving the regulatory framework within which they operate so they meet the high expectations Tasmanian’s have of any industry doing business in this state.

Labor will act to provide certainty to the industry, to the community and to markets.

Support our Salmon Industry

Labor knows how important the salmon industry it is to our regional communities as one of Tasmania’s largest industries and provider of jobs.

Sign our petition and say you stand with Labor to find the balance between jobs, industry growth and the environment.

Click to download to a copy of Labor’s policy. 

Photo by CSIRO, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0.