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9 new cages for Kilkieran Bay and 5 or 6 for Bertraghboy Bay in Connemara plus more to be added

category galway | environment | press release author Wednesday December 04, 2013 21:59author by Ireland Against Salmon Farms Report this post to the editors

Destruction of our bays continues

The destruction of Kilkieran Bay and Bertraghboy Bay by our state. Nine new cages for Kilkieran Bay and 5or 6 for Bertraghboy Bay in Connemara and more to be added. You could practically walk to them from the shore and this is an SAC and SPA.

Again economically supported by Udaras na Gaeltachta and now run by a multinational salmon feed lot operator. Replacing salmon farms that never worked and got huge funding from Udaras na Gaeltachta in the past and this is a SPECIAL AREA OF CONSERVATION. It is a total disgrace.

Kilkieran Bay
Kilkieran Bay

The destruction of Kilkieran Bay and Bertraghboy Bay by our state. Nine new cages for Kilkieran Bay and 5or 6 for Bertraghboy Bay in Connemara and more to be added. You could practically walk to them from the shore and this is an SAC and SPA.

Again economically supported by Udaras na Gaeltachta and now run by a multinational salmon feed lot operator. Replacing salmon farms that never worked and got huge funding from Udaras na Gaeltachta in the past and this is a SPECIAL AREA OF CONSERVATION. It is a total disgrace.

Not much chance for the wild fish of Connemara...


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Bertraghboy Bay
Bertraghboy Bay

author by Derrick Hambleton - Galway - An Taiscepublication date Thu Dec 05, 2013 09:19Report this post to the editors

An Taisce
The National Trust for Ireland - Galway Association

30th November, 2013
Re: EU Concern over the proposed Galway Bay Salmon Farm:
Dear Editor,
Without much doubt, the reopening of a European Commission investigation, confirmed the public are right to be concerned about negative implications surrounding the proposed development of a massive industrial scale ‘open cage’ salmon farm, still waiting to be licensed by Minister Coveney at the head of Galway Bay. Galway City Tribune, page 37 “Euro probe a setback for giant Galway Bay fish farm” Nov 29th.
As the EU Commission now steps back in and seeks to investigate claims that this project, not alone threatens the future health of wild salmon and trout stocks, but also the future of economically important angling tourism in Connemara, even human health. The Commission has to be satisfied that the use of scientific information being raised in evidence, both for, and against the scheme, may have been manipulated but was not also being suppressed by a state body?
An Taisce members in Galway along with many other local organisations and individuals, had sought to question the potential for negative impacts emanating from this project from the very beginning. In fact, since Minister Coveney first published his departmental report ‘Our Ocean Wealth’ - Towards an Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland, 2011. That document included sections focusing on the required increase of commercially significant quantities of ‘cage’ reared salmon, and to promote sustainable development of finfish production. In its response, it was said that “An Taisce supports the sustainable development of aquaculture, [however] the granting of licenses must be in keeping with other objectives for the area, and developed in a balanced manner which is not damaging to the conservation interests of any site” An Taisce Natural Environment Office response - 28th March 2012.
An Taisces submission also recommended the adoption of ‘Whole Bay Management Plans’ which need to be developed for all Irish bays supporting aquaculture. To ensure the level of aquaculture does not exceed the carrying capacity of the bay. The use of large quantities of veterinary chemicals used to keep farmed salmon free from sea lice infestation, and other disease has implications for all other fishing activity within Galway Bay. Crustaceans are susceptible to changes in water quality standards, therefore existing Crab, Prawn, Lobster, Clam and Oyster production within the bay are all put at risk. Existing jobs, and an export led local fishing industry could be lost to Galway.
Finally. Rumours abound that, as well as the known 20,000 fish mortalities from a Jellyfish “bloom” at Clare island (Lorna Siggins - Irish Times 20th Oct), that a recent outbreak of Amoebic Gill Disease has forced cessation of production at this Marine Harvest island site. With the unit now being fallowed (closed), for at least another year. Meanwhile, production is being transferred to a number of other sites along the west coast?

As has become normal in Ireland, commercial consideration has been made the entire focus, for short-term financial gain. All environmental considerations having been set aside, are seen as mere obstacles to future development with local protest seen as the ranting of bystanders, who were always seen as being uninformed contrarians, if not plain ignorant!
The question that most sensible citizens in Ireland will now wish to have answered is: How much tax payers money has been, cumulatively wasted by BIM in pushing ahead with this vastly unsustainable project, in spite of authorities being advised from a very early stage that furtherance of this scheme would not be welcomed?
Huge sums of public monies have over-time been wasted by governments putting forward a number of environmentally unsustainable projects in recent years. Who is it that foots the bills? Tax payers in the first instance! But long term it is Irelands reputation as having a ‘green, clean environment, that suffers most.
Yours faithfully
Derrick Hambleton
An Taisce – Galway Association

author by Tpublication date Sat Dec 07, 2013 22:05Report this post to the editors

The Southern Star which hails from West Cork carries a report on this issue titled Baffled by enthusiasm of salmon farm endorsement and in it they talk about how the massive salmon fish farm for Galway will create cesspools of waste and huge infestations of sea-lice. It's not pleasant even to swim in the water with these creatures as they will try and attach to your skin.

As West Cork salmon fishermen know to their cost, our politicos don’t do resignations even when they make a bags of things – as they feel is the case with Marine Minister Simon Coveney.

A matter that baffles fishermen just now is Coveney’s enthusiastic endorsement of a massive BIM salmon farm in Galway Bay that is mired in controversial allegations of flawed and suppressed information – and which has prompted the EU Environment commission to take the unprecedented step of opening an investigation into the project.

Commissioner Janez Potocnik wants clarification of supposed ‘fundamental errors’ allegedly contained in a major scientific analysis carried out by the Marine Institute.

And, he also wants to know why Coveney’s Department of Agriculture withheld a report from Inland Fisheries Ireland (a State agency) that was critical of the Marine Institute’s monitoring of sea lice on fish farms, even though the EU had specifically requested the report. Commissioner Potocnik is now seeking a copy of the documents.

The Galway Bay project is gigantic. Located between the Aran Islands and Galway Bay it will occupy 456 hectares (more than 1,100 acres) and produce more farmed salmon than all existing Irish fish farms combined.

Critics pull no punches when they claim it will create ‘cesspools of disease’ with a sewage equivalent of more than twice the population of Galway city.

Inland Fisheries Ireland point out that sea lice breeds on fish farms and infects migrating wild salmon as they pass the farms. The parasite is also feared for the damage it can do to the country’s rivers, wild fish, native habitats, freshwater quality and, most importantly, the €700m angling industry.

However in the last paragraph they ask the sort of question that should be carried in the rest of the press and that is:

But the most serious question doing the rounds is this: has his [Marine Minister Simon Coveney] department been tailoring scientific evidence to suit an outcome that he and BIM have been advancing?

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