Friday, 21 June 2013

Darina Allen clashes with BIM over proposed salmon farms

Celebrity chef Darina Allen and the international Slow Food organisation have clashed with Bord Iascaigh Mhara over its proposed 500-hectare organic salmon farm off the Aran Islands.

Potentially Disastrous Situation on Irish Shores

The shocking image below was sent to us today and it really calls into question the Irish governments so called monitoring regime carried out by the Marine Institute and protocols which are proclaimed to be more advanced than any other jurisdiction. This Finnock was caught in the Kylemore River today, the 21st June 2013. The number of sea lice on this fish are way above trigger levels. This did not happen overnight.

To the best of our knowledge, there are two salmon farm sites in operation in Ballinakill Bay at Froachoileann which are operated by Bifand Ltd. This particular company has a history of problems with controlling numbers of sea lice, infact it was instructed to de-stock back in March 2012 by order from the Marine Institute. There is obviously a major sea lice problem yet again in Ballinakill Bay and the Marine Institute must investigate this potentially disastrous situation for our wild stocks. NSFAS do not have any faith in the present monitoring process or the agency tasked with carrying out the inspections as they are not effective.

We are calling on the government, the gaurdians of this state and its natural resources, to review the current sea lice inspection process. The inspection process, as it is currently carried out, makes a mockery of the claims by Minister Coveney that the controls in place “are generally regarded as representing best practice internationally”. It is not in anyones interest to have a situation whereby the operators of salmon farms are notified days in advance of any inspection. A completely independent angency, such as the EPA, need to be appointed as the monitors of the aquaculture industry in order for the policing of the industry to be carried out in a transparent and effective manner.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Protest March in Castlebar 27th of April 2013

The next anti salmon farm proposal protest is planned outside Enda Kenny's office  in Castlebar on 27Th April @ 1400hrs.


Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Minister Simon Coveney Goes Silent when Questioned

Aquaculture Question's in the Dail 26th March 2013
Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív: I asked the Minister whether a moratorium was in place or not. The question has nothing to do with a specific application. I am talking about a general policy issue of a moratorium which the Minister's Department put in place under the seafood programme. It is a simple question. Is there a moratorium in place under the seafood programme? Perhaps the Minister might answer that question in view of the issue I have raised in the House which has nothing to do with a specific application but with the generality of the moratorium in place.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Does the Minister have an answer?

Deputy Simon Coveney: No.
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: As the Minister has no answer, we will move on.

Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív: The silence says a lot.

Deputy Simon Coveney: There is no moratorium in place.

Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív: There is.


The current National Development Plan states: ‘The targets for increased productive capacity for salmon will now have to be deferred until after 2013 at the earliest as a result of the amendments made to this programme… during the SEA (strategic environmental assessment) process’.

The concerns related to the negative impact of sea lice emanating from salmon farms on wild salmon, said SBB, and were submitted by the former central and regional fisheries boards and supported by the Department of Communication, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR).


Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Salmon Farming Cracked Open in its Honesty

Do you know what you are eating? Do you know the truth behind farmed salmon across the world?

Watch this video

Public Comments:

Jimmy:Very eye opening video! The threat of ISA and other fish deseases spread through fish farming or feed lotting practices, can also decimate wild, migratory Atlantic fish populations in Newfoundland and Labrador as well as the other Atlantic provinces. It is very disturbing to me to see how Government hides data and uses intimidation tactics to cover up this real threat to a very important keystone species and integral part of our ecosystem, so as to protect big industry and trade agreements with other countries. These lying, blinky, shifty eyed politicians make me cringe.

John: Government corruption, disease, scientists gagged and almighty lies by the salmon farming companies. It's all in there, exactly the same thing that is happening in Scotland. This film is the wake up call to Scotland's people who care for the survival of Wild Scottish Salmon.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Connemera Sea Trout Collapse of the 1980's

The Famous Connemara sea trout collapse of the 1980's was a direct result of having salmon farms placed on the West Coast of Ireland. Connemara was a great sea trout angling destination but the salmon farms placed on the coast destroyed this angling sector. Connemara never recovered to this day. July 8th 1993 this parlimentary question was raised

20 Years later it seems nothing has changed and nothing learned. Only this time the worlds biggest salmon farm is being proposed by Simon Coveney. If approved, will have the capacity to wipe out ALL juvenile sea trout and salmon along the Western Sea Board of Ireland. Not only effecting the West Coast but the South Coast of Ireland together with German and France's migrating salmon smolts on which these salmon farms lay on their migratory path.

Not only now, is this an Irish issue but a very serious European issue effecting other countries.

First Global Study Reveals Health Risks of Widely Eaten Farm Raised Salmon

First Global Study Reveals Health Risks of Widely Eaten Farm Raised Salmon


Science Study Suggests Sharp Restrictions in Consumption

Albany, New York — A study published this week in a leading scientific journal found significantly higher levels of cancer-causing and other health-related contaminants in farm raised salmon than in their wild counterparts. The study, published in Science and by far the largest and most comprehensive done to date, concluded that concentrations of several cancer-causing substances in particular are high enough to suggest that consumers should consider severely restricting their consumption of farmed salmon.

The majority of salmon served in restaurants and found on grocery store shelves is farmed rather than wild. In most cases, as detailed in the study, consumption of more than one meal of farmed salmon per month could pose unacceptable cancer risks according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methods for calculating fish consumption advisories.
 The Pew Charitable Trusts, one of the U.S.’s largest philanthropies, sponsored the study. Pew has sponsored major research on fisheries including a number of widely reported recent studies on the deterioration of the marine environment.

Whereas earlier studies have analyzed anywhere from 8 to 13 salmon samples from individual salmon farming regions, the current study analyzed fillets from about 700 farmed and wild salmon produced in eight major farmed salmon producing regions around the world and purchased in 16 large cities in North America and Europe. The study’s authors, six U.S. and Canadian researchers representing fields from toxicology to biology to statistics, selected salmon samples to be representative of the salmon typically available to consumers around the world.

The researchers found significantly higher concentrations of contaminants in farmed salmon versus wild. In particular, four substances that have been well studied for their ability to cause cancer — PCBs, dioxins, dieldrin, and toxaphene — were consistently and significantly more concentrated in farmed salmon as a group.

Geographic Differences

Among the study’s conclusions, salmon farmed in Europe were generally more contaminated than farmed salmon from North or South America. Farmed salmon purchased for the study from supermarkets in Frankfurt, Edinburgh, Paris, London, and Oslo were the most contaminated and triggered consumption recommendations of one-half to one meal per month — based on U.S. EPA consumption advisories for these contaminants. A meal was considered to be an eight-ounce portion.
 Farmed salmon purchased from supermarkets in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Chicago, New York, and Vancouver triggered a recommendation of no more than two meals per month.
 There was slightly more variation in fish purchased in North America than those purchased in Europe. While farmed salmon purchased for the study in New Orleans and Denver were generally least contaminated — triggering a recommendation of about 3 meals per month — farmed salmon purchased in Boston, San Francisco, and Toronto triggered the more stringent consumption recommendations of the European-purchased fish.

"Ultimately, the most important determinant of risk has to do with where the fish is farmed not where it is purchased," said Dr. David Carpenter, an author of the study and Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany. "And because it’s a global market, it’s hard to be sure what you’re getting."

According to Carpenter, "Just because Europeans have the most contaminated farmed salmon, this doesn’t mean American consumers shouldn’t be concerned."
 With very few exceptions, farmed salmon samples tested significantly exceeded the contaminant levels of wild salmon, which could be consumed at levels as high as 8 meals per month. Even the least contaminated farmed salmon, from Chile and the state of Washington, had significantly higher levels of PCBs, dioxins, and dieldrin than wild salmon.

Contamination Likely Related to Feed

The Pew-sponsored study concluded that the contamination problem is likely related to what salmon are being fed when they’re on the farm. While wild salmon eat a diverse buffet from small aquatic organisms like krill to larger fish, farmed salmon are fed a concentrated and high fat mixture of ground up fish and fish oil. And since chemical contaminants a fish is exposed to during its life are stored in its fat, the higher fat "salmon chow" passes along more of these contaminants to the farmed salmon.

The study’s results confirmed this possibility when it found higher contaminant concentrations in salmon feed from Europe than feed from North and South America, a result roughly consistent with contaminant levels in European and American salmon.

Consumption Advisories and Recommendations

Given the overall contaminant levels found, if these were locally caught fish instead of fish purchased commercially EPA and many state consumption advisories would suggest that consumers restrict their consumption of farmed salmon to an average of no more than one meal per month. However, consumers need to be aware that in some cases even that could exceed advised contaminant exposure levels. EPA’s consumption advisories use acceptable lifetime risk levels to identify the maximum number of fish meals per month that can be safely eaten.

"If anything, the study conservatively estimates the health risks from the contaminants in farmed salmon," said the University at Albany’s Carpenter. The EPA fish consumption guidelines don’t take into account exposures people have to the same cancer-causing substances from all other sources in the environment. "They assume," said Carpenter, "that fish consumption is the only source of exposure people have to these substances; and we know that’s not true." "Also," according to Carpenter, "the recommendations only consider the risk of cancer and don’t take into account the neurological, immune, and endocrine system effects that have been associated with these contaminants."

Consumers interested in knowing whether salmon is wild or farmed should be aware that the word "Fresh" on the label does not mean the salmon is wild-caught from the ocean. And any salmon labeled "Atlantic" in the U.S. is almost always farmed. Salmon labeled "Atlantic" in other countries is most likely farmed. The authors recommended that governments require clear and prominent labeling of farmed and wild salmon as well as the country of origin of all farmed salmon.
 The authors also said their results strongly reinforced the recommendations of a July 2003 National Academy of Sciences report on dioxins in the food supply which called for reducing dioxin levels in animal feed such as fishmeal.

Since contaminants build up in the fatty tissue of the fish, the authors point out that consumers may be able to reduce their consumption of contaminants in farmed salmon by following the recommendations of many state governments and the federal government to remove as much skin and visible fat as possible. However, it is difficult to determine how much of the contaminant load can be removed in this way.

In assessing the human health risks of consuming farmed salmon, the authors of the study used U.S. EPA consumption guidance for PCBs, toxaphene, and dieldrin covering locally caught fish rather than U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards for these substances governing commercially-sold fish because EPA’s recommendations are based on health effects only.

While FDA is the agency that actually regulates contaminants in commercial fish, unlike EPA FDA does not have consumption standards for toxaphene in fish, and the agency’s standards for PCBs and dieldrin weren’t set using purely health-based criteria. According to Dr. Barbara Knuth of Cornell University and one of the study’s authors, "Because the FDA regulatory levels take into account factors such as effects on the food production system, they were never designed to consider exclusively human health risk-which was the only concern we were looking at in this study."

"Plus," said Knuth, "the health and diet information and the technology FDA used to help set the regulatory levels for PCBs are 20 years out of date. We can detect PCBs at much lower levels today; new studies provide more information about the health risks associated with these substances; and people eat more fish today." In fact, both EPA and FDA have agreed that FDA levels are inappropriate for setting fish consumption advisories (see last paragraph on p. 1-5 in the EPA National Guidance for Fish Advisories).

Knuth said, "It’s this vast difference in the approach of the two agencies that explains why farmed salmon with these levels of contaminants could trigger such restrictive consumption recommendations based on EPA methods, but is still allowed to be sold legally in the U.S. by the FDA."

The annual global production of farmed salmon has increased 40 times during the last two decades — making inexpensive salmon available to consumers year-round. Between 1987 and 1999, salmon consumption increased at an annual rate of 14% in the European Union and 23% in the U.S. Since 2000, over half of the salmon eaten globally has been farmed, coming primarily from fish farms in Northern Europe, Chile, and Canada.

Largest study of salmon health ever undertaken set to begin in B.C.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Current Locations of Salmon Farms in Ireland

Locations of the salmonid farm sites operational in Ireland are indicated on the maps below.