A long-time opponent of open-net fish farming has given the thumbs up to B.C.’s first-ever closed, floating salmon-farming tank.
“I think it’s great,” Alexandra Morton told the Straight by phone from her home on Vancouver Island. “I know the Namgis [First Nation] are doing something up here on land with the closed tank. I think that now is the time, and you’re going to see all kinds of entrepreneurs, who want to do this to make money.”
In a press release today (January 17), Vancouver-based AgriMarine Holdings announced its launch of the tank, in partnership with the Middle Bay Sustainable Aquaculture Institute, in Campbell River.
The release describes it as “the first marine based, commercial scale, closed containment tank for rearing salmon”.
Morton said she only has one concern.
“I’d prefer that they were completely out of the water, because the ocean always breaks everything that’s in it eventually,” she said. “But really, my hat is off to them [AgriMarine] and all power to them. I mean, this is what needs to happen. This is the answer—closed containment. It could be a B.C. industry. Once you go into closed containment, you can grow a lot of exciting things, like algae, for example. People should really look into that—sunlight and water and you are making food.”
Additionally important, she said, is the fact that, “you’d be raising the bottom of the food chain and not the top of the food chain. That’s the way the planet works, it works from the bottom up.”
According to the AgriMarine release, the tank will be operational once life support and waste recovery systems are installed and the transfer of Chinook fingerlings into the tank is completed.