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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:50 pm 
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Planning is now in for the 'new' fish farm, which involves moving the current fish farm at Ardmaddy to a new site further south at Port Na Morachd.

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The farm will be kitted out with new cages which will hold twice as much biomass (i.e. fish). The reason given for the move is improved tidal flow. Concerns include the transmission of sea lice to passing wild fish. The public have until 4th August to comment / object and can do so on the Council website HERE.

There is more information HERE - albeit with a strong anti-fish-farm slant. Perhaps someone on here might wish to put an opposing (pro-fish-farm) view?

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:27 pm 
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How about the fact that fish farming employs far more people around the country than land farming??? People want smoked salmon...perhaps folk don't like to complain or object to every new enterprise under the sun...the argument that salmon/ sea trout numbers are flourishing this year...Scottish salmon has been winning awards around the globe...China wants in on the action...it is a great source of Scottish product exportation to the rest of the world in a time of global financial crisis...


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 7:00 pm 
canUsmellthat wrote:
How about the fact that fish farming employs far more people around the country than land farming???


What fact canu ?? Why are you making this up ??

In Scotland salmon farming employs 963 people, trout and finfish farming employ 183 people. Together they produce output worth around £434 million per year.
http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/marin ... andFigures
http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/marine/Fish-Shellfish

In Scotland landbased farming employs 65,000 people who produce output worth around £2.3 billion a year.
http://www.nfus.org.uk/farming-facts

The Ardmaddy salmon farm, like the vast majority of salmon farms in Scotland, is not Scottish owned so their profits go overseas and do not benefit Scotland. Fish farming in Scotland is yet another example of our economic colonisation (nearly all Scottish renewables and power companies are now foreign owned for example).
The Ardmaddy operation is owned by Lakeland Marine Ltd which is part of the Norwegian multinational The Lakeland Group. It has large operations in Scotland, Norway, Belize, Spain and Vietnam.

Smoked Shanks (Getting facts right by choice)


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 8:25 pm 
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Don't trust your figures Smoked Shanks...What exactly does "directly employed in agriculture mean"??? Are we talking about the subsidy good time farmers??? What year are these data taken from??? and surely staff employed by a financially successful company (never mind the nationality) gain direct benifits???

I know you pick your side and that's what is good about your personality...predictability...Black is white and all that...


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:37 pm 
canUsmellthat wrote:
Don't trust your figures Smoked Shanks
The data is from The Scottish Government and National Farmers Union Scotland
...What exactly does "directly employed in agriculture mean"???
You should be able to figure that out for yourself canU, at least I hope you can.
Are we talking about the subsidy good time farmers???
The data is for all who make their living in agriculture
What year are these data taken from???
2009
and surely staff employed by a financially successful company (never mind the nationality) gain direct benifits???
Yes, they do of course, in the form of wages. I agree, someone's nationality is irrelevent so if fish farms in Argyll mainly employ east Europeans, for example, that's fine. However when the fish farm is Norwegian owned it means that the profits (that's the money left after wages and other costs of production have been paid CanU) leaves Scotland and is not used for the benefit of our nation but for the benefit of Norway.


I hope thats a little easier for you to understand CanUsmellthat.

LongShanks


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:21 pm 
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8) :lol: While generally agreeing with Long Smoked Shanks about the financial aspects, I think the main arguments should be about the marine environment. This farm is already much too close to shore and to human & constrained ecological systems. It is well established internationally now that fish-farms need to move further off-shore as their outputs of wastes and parasites are considerable. Why locate such an (enlarged) pollution source next to a population for whom huge sums of money have just been spent on reducing sewage releases to, and levels in, the sound? It's absurd. We don't want to increase sewage pollution levels around Seil, do we? Oppose the Green Goblin's dastardly plans! KAPPOOOOWWWW! :x 8)


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:39 pm 
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I think the problem with basing fish farms further offshore is that they then become uneconomical in terms of logistics re. transport and structural integrity. Cheap protein and a protected environment are difficult to reconcile.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:15 am 
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So let's just ban fish farming then...and wind turbines...and land farms...and anything else that causes ecological pollution/ detrement...

What about cars???pharmasuticals???solid fuel heating systems??? Oh no dare I say it...nuclear power stations!!!

Is the right to live ok with everyone or will we start mass suicide forth with??? Or perhaps the question should be "Is the right for some people to live ok with everyone"???


Fish farming does cause pollution, but so does many other things in our lives and we still manage to deal with it...the alternative is either to take wild caught fish or not to supply at all...it's a case of supply and demand...

Now I'm not a retired person, so I can't sit back and rest on my historical carbon footprint and say hypocritically that you can't do this or you can't do that...my generation can't do much of anything at the moment...I'm not going to blame the baby boom generation either, I think you're all to blame!!!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:03 am 
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I am frankly amazed that there have been so many objectors to this proposal but . . . who are the 'you all' and what are we all to blame for? Us and Them has never been a helpful starting position in any debate.

What is wrong with some of the profits made by (Norwegian) fish farm companies being used to improve environmental practices in the industry? Why can't we have our (fish)cake and eat it? The industry is steadily improving its practices, but under protest - these improvements largely come through public pressure and/or legislation. It is a huge overreaction from suggesting that perhaps the fish farming industry could clean its act up a little to talking of banning everything :roll:

If more was done to tackle issues of seabed pollution, escapes and sea lice, if the industry was prepared to spend a little more on double netting rather than the cheaper expedient of shooting seals, then what objections to salmon farming could there be? The visual impact of this development will be minimal for 99% of us - and I speak as a boat owner who will be regularly passing the new farm. I do wonder however why so many of the control and storage structures on fish farms have to be quite so ugly . . .

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 1:23 pm 
I sent an objection to this new, much enlarged, Ardmaddy salmon farm for the following reasons;
1. SNH calculated that it will produce as much pollution as a town of 50,000 people.
2. It will be using audiotronic seal scarers which are proven to also affect porpoises and dolphin.
3. It will not have double barrier netting so the chances of diseased/liced salmon escaping is high.
4. Their policy will be to shoot predating seals (double netting would have avoided this).
5. It will lit during hours of darkness.
6. The lighting will come from a generator.
7. Yachtsmen will find those particular waters much more constricted and may actually have to learn how to tack :lol: , that is if they ever bother to switch their motors off :mrgreen:
Both 5 and 6 will ruin what was a beautiful and peaceful part of our local environment. The generator will be heard from the old manse (Kilbrandon House), Balvicar Farm and chalets, and possibly as far as Balvicar under the right (wrong!) conditions.
Further:
If the Norwegian company which owns this operation would be prepared to lower their profit expectations (doubtful because their shareholders would be unhappy) then all of these objections could be resolved. They are not. They are a foreign owned multinational which, like thousands of others, are exploiting and ruining Scotland's resources and environment for the benefit of shareholders in Norway, or Spain , or USA etc. and to our detriment.
7. was a joke !

Red Shanks (objectioneer by choice)

ps Canu.... use a spellchecker FFS.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:21 am 
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Hi

It seems to me that for the sake of providing a very few jobs, possibly not to locals, that many other local businesses will suffer. It all depends on the impact which some say will be catastrophic. I have friends who dive, they will go elsewhere if the seabed is significantly ruined. I have other friends who come just to see the porpoises and seals.... they will go elsewhere. The light pollution could spoil the reason many of my friends come to Seil. Last week the current fish farm had a ship with spot lights on all night plus a generator. You might just as well have been in Grimsby. Hardly the escape from the rat race that so many visitors seek. All these effects are slight in the grand scheme of things, but can build up and make the difference between Seil being an attractive place to live or visit.... or to avoid.
We need to know how much this will effect our lives. Those with businesses may well see a loss in customers if tourism declines and many people may notice a decline in the natural resources we all enjoy. Perhaps these effects will all be small and most people on Seil will hardly notice. But surely it is something we really need to know about? I was amazed to find no posters or proper local campaigns asking for more information or raising the debate. Everyone I recently spoke to was surprised to learn of the proposal but quickly became complacent and more interested in their immediate problems. Sadly, people may well be saying in a year or two "why weren't we warned?".
Whether you can or cannot see the fish farm when you open your curtains in the morning, it will probably effect your life in the next few years. What I think we need to find out is how much? Hopefully hardly at all. But for the sake of a company lowering its transport costs and bringing little local benefit, we all run the risk of our lives being changed for the worst.

The Norwegian company must be delighted that so little opposition has been made and be wondering if the locals care? If this goes through, perhaps they will consider taking the easy option and proposing more developments around Seil? With so much complacency, that would be a consideration if I was them.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:14 pm 
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Mhes,

There have been 377 comments made on the Council website, so I find your claim that there is 'so little opposition' a bit surprising. It is hardly the sort of issue that is likely to get people manning the barricades.

We live in Balvicar and have never been disturbed by light or noise from the fish farm at Ardmaddy. Moving it a mile further down the coast takes it further from habitation and should mean less nuisance, not more. The only trip boat based on this side of the island wil not even pass it on most trips now as it heads through Cuan Sound. I don't think that area is much frequented by divers either. We occasionally see small boats fishing off Degnish Point, but that is about it.

If there had never been a fish farm at Ardmaddy - and if Shuna Sound and Loch Shuna weren't full of the things already - then perhaps I could see the point. In reality though I don't think this development will have any impact at all on 99% of the inhabitants of Seil, or on our tourists. However, if people feel strongly enough then you could do worse than look HERE where a successful campaign has been carried out to prevent fish farms being installed in Broad Bay near Stornoway.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:37 am 
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Yr "There have been 377 comments made on the Council website, so I find your claim that there is 'so little opposition' a bit surprising."

I was first told about this proposal from a friend in London. They have helped the campaign by sending an email which makes it easy for people to copy and paste the objections onto the council site. When I look at who has objected (names are posted onto the council site), I can see a lot of people from outside Seil. What I don't see are many local names that I know of or more importantly any evidence of a campaign on the island itself. The conclusion is that either people are unaware, or not concerned. I think both scenarios are dangerous. 377 would be a better response if half the objectors were local but I don't think that is the case. A proper campaign fuelled by locals going through their visitor guest books etc could surely get a few thousand objections?

Yr "Moving it a mile further down the coast takes it further from habitation and should mean less nuisance, not more"

I suspect it is moving a lot less than a mile, a few hundred yards is probably more accurate. But I think you are missing the important point. They are not proposing to move the existing fish farm, but build a farm considerably bigger. The campaign literature and comments here suggest it will still have an impact on Balvicar Bay even if it were several miles away.

Here is the campaign email which people have been using (cut and paste) to object. I think it should be published onto this thread, I hope you agree....

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The technology now exists for the salmon farming industry to situate new farms offshore in areas less damaging to wildlife and tourism jobs. To operate in a more environmentally friendly way, the applicant (a large multi-national company) could relocate offshore, away from areas important to conservation and use double underwater netting (with the outer net mesh the same type and size as the inner net to prevent entanglement of wildlife). There would then be no need to shoot seals, and the double nets would also reduce the problem of farmed salmon escaping and damaging wild stocks. Instead, the applicant has chosen the cheaper option of applying for a site in a sensitive area important to wildlife, using single nets and shooting seals.



The farm is close to an important seal pupping ground around Cleit Rock in Cuan Sound. When mothers are shot, orphaned pups are left to starve. Under the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010, guidelines state that seals should only be shot as a "last resort". This application does not propose to fit double nets and therefore will not employ the most efficient non-lethal means of keeping salmon and seals separated. Accordingly seal shooting by this farm is not a "last resort" and the farm should not be granted a license to shoot seals.



The farm will also use seal-scarers, which are known to disturb dolphins and porpoise which regularly use the Sound. This may well change their migration patterns and impact on wildlife tourism jobs not to mention the good effect that seeing dolphins regularly has on the local community.



The application is for an inshore location in Seil Sound, which is a narrow channel used by migrating salmonids where sea lice and disease from the farm will continue to damage local salmon and sea trout stocks (Ref.3). There is no excuse for expanding without regard to local wildlife and tourist interests as these companies are currently highly profitable - one company reporting first quarter profits this year of over £1 million per 1000 tonnes of salmon farmed.



Historically, local rivers had healthy runs of salmon and sea trout. There used to be a bag-netting station at Easdale and the coble at Loch Feochan. The Rivers and Fisheries Trusts of Scotland (RAFTS) blame sea lice infestations from salmon farms for infecting migrating wild salmon and sea trout. They report that wild salmon rod catches between 1970 and 2009 in the West Highlands and Islands (the aquaculture area) have declined by 42%, whereas catches in the East, where there are no salmon farms, have risen by 24% [ref. 2]. Studies show that as many as 80% of juvenile salmon and sea trout are killed by sea lice from salmon farms [ref. 3].



The visual impact of the farm will detract from an area of great scenic beauty. Should consent be granted, the area within the moorings would be greater than the existing farm by a factor of 3.2 and the buoys would be halfway across the channel. There would be a large concrete feed-barge and 24,000 watts of underwater lighting with a generator running all night.



One report [ref. 1] estimates that the farm will produce pollution equivalent to the untreated sewage of a town of 50,000 people (Oban population is 8,120). Although salmon farms may not look particularly large, a huge biomass of fish is crammed into them. The proposed peak stocking density of 17.4 Kg / cubic metre exceeds the RSPCA "freedom foods" standards. On the 26th of April 2006, the applicant pleaded guilty to over-stocking fish cages and polluting the environment on their neighbouring site in Loch Shuna, and was fined £1000. Inevitably, pollution from the proposed site will reach both the local designated shellfish waters and the Firth of Lorn Special Area of Conservation yet no Appropriate Assessment (as required by the Habitats Directive) or Environmental Impact Assessment has been carried out. It was deemed necessary to spend £11 million to improve the sewerage of around 150 houses to comply with legislation - should the same legislation apply here?



The farm will be located very close to an important dive-site, which contains a "Priority Marine Feature" - an area of white cluster anemones (Parazoanthus anguicomus).

All public bodies have statutory duty under the Nature Conservation Act (Scotland) 2004, to 'further the conservation of biodiversity' as they carry out their work. There is a great deal of environmental legislation designed to protect biodiversity, seals, wild salmon, porpoises and dolphins, and the Firth of Lorn SAC. To this date, this legislation has not been correctly applied. It is important to note that the normal burden of proof in planning is reversed under the Habitats Directive. It is the responsibility of the appropriate authority of the member state to demonstrate that a "plan or project" will not adversely affect a Special Area of Conservation.



The Crown Estate owns the seabed. The views and the wildlife, which will be damaged should this application be approved, belong to the people of Scotland. If the application is approved, the planning consent alone will be worth perhaps £ millions to the applicant. People have a right to expect that the salmon farming industry will work to reduce its impacts on landscape and wildlife. This is not an environmentally responsible application. Please object to it.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:26 am 
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You are right, there are not many local objectors, nor do I expect there to be. People living in rural areas have a slighly more pragmatic approach to these things. In an ideal world yes, fish farms would be situated further offshore, use a smaller percentage of wild fish in the feed, be double-netted and the industry would be working hard to address the sea lice problem. I am all in favour of campaigns to encourage this, but these are not valid grounds for objecting to a planning application.

No matter what people may say about employment, most of the permanent full-time jobs in the Oban Times each week that are not council positions are in fish farming, and people here know that. That is much more important to them than the ability of people to come up from London and enjoy the view from a holiday cottage at Ardmaddy for a couple of weeks, or for weekend divers to view anemones.

This has obviously been a well-orchestrated campaign but it has singularly failed to win the hearts and minds of local people as few of the arguments put forward are seen as relevant. Indeed, it may well have had the opposite effect, as people are quite resistant to being told what is good for them by people who do not live here or who do not work here.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:23 pm 
Mhes wrote:
A proper campaign fuelled by locals going through their visitor guest books etc could surely get a few thousand objections?

I agree but the problem was that very few local people were even aware of the application until very recently.
I thought that the email objection letter was excellent and, hopefully, has the desired effect.

Nick B's comments in favour of the new fishfarm need a little unpacking.
1. It is a myth that fishfarms are large employers of local people. Lets do a little count in The Oban Times on Thursday shall we? or, if you can't wait, do a google search for argyll job vacancies and surf the results for a few minutes. Only one fishfarm job advertised, scores of tourism jobs, building and driving and store workers come out well too. Or pop down to a local fishfarm (Kames?) and notice two things; probably only one person there. Go at a stocking or catching time when there are more. Listen to the accents !
2. Because local people are not objecting doesn't mean they want the new fishfarm. Nor does it mean they are angry about people who don't live here telling them what is good for them. Noone is telling anyone what is good for them and residents need to be given credit for knowing that rather than words put in their mouths.

The key question is "How will the new fishfarm benefit the area?" Answers on a postage stamp please.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:42 pm 
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There were three posts for fish farm technicians (Loch Etive) in last week's OT plus one for a technical manager. (Plus an ad for weekend staff for fish farms on Mull). Of course, the fish farms also support several local food processing firms (Argyll Smokeries, Inverawe Smokehouses etc).

I said local people were 'resistant' to being told what to do by outsiders. That is rather different from saying that they are 'angry'. Please do not misquote me or put words into my mouth.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:29 pm 
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:lol: 8)
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Please do not misquote me or put words into my mouth


Then, NickB, please don't feel that you should speak on behalf of the entire local community by blethering on that there has been a well-orchestrated campaign and it has "singularly failed to win the hearts and minds of the local people". Longshanks is dead right in saying that very few of the locals knew anything about this proposal until a few days ago, i.e. until leaflets came through our letter boxes (last Friday in our case), our household knew nothing about it. So there has been no long-term local campaign. And personally I know noone local who is in favour of it. Thus the current rate of 20 registered objections per day may well continue. In any case, what's all this fixation with locals and outsiders? What's so special about locals' opinions? Outsiders may well be the ones who end up eating contaminated oysters from Seil Sound once the sewage equivalent from a good-sized town is introduced into this confined area. In my view, everyone's opinion is equal, including yours. But that's all yours is, ie your opinion - you are not our heart and mind! :wink: 8)


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:03 pm 
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spiderman wrote:
In my view, everyone's opinion is equal, including yours. But that's all yours is, ie your opinion - you are not our heart and mind! :wink: 8)

lol

IN that case, I can only say that it was not such a well co-ordinated campaign as it could have been quicker to seek local support . . . just as well I started this thread then, as it has now had 224 views. Still a few days for people to object, and apart from CanU no-one else on here appears to be in favour.

Still, based on the fact that only 5 of us have actually posted an opinion on here that makes it 20% in favour, 20% noncommital and 60% against. I'm not trying to influence opinion, neither do I have a very strong opinion myself - I am simply trying to facilitate discussion and present some alternative points of view.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:17 pm 
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I am simply trying to facilitate discussion and present some alternative points of view.


Throughout this thread there has been part of me that feels slightly hypocritical as I am doing precious little to publicise the concerns I have.

This forum is a great platform, I hope people realise that they can be heard and make a difference. Copying and pasting the objections (if you feel so inclined!) to the council at http://publicaccess.argyll-bute.gov.uk/publicaccess/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=makeComment&keyVal=LN76RBCH06O00 could help.

I would love to hear from people who have experience of living near big scale fish farms or just can add some real facts and figures?

NickB - your position is understood and appreciated!


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 10:27 pm 
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8) :wink: Actually NickB, you have indeed done us all a great service by initiating this thread & adding the link for quick comment/objection. I see that the numbers of the sane continue to increase! Personally, I find few things more obscene than packing free-ranging globally migratory wonderful fish into little cages but, as I am probably in a tiny minority in this regard, I have contained my formal objections to those of local environmental pollution, threat to mammals etc.. What also bugs me, not only for this thread, is the large number of stalkers who read this stuff and post nothing. Are they the human equivalents of cage-reared salmon?! C'mon folks, let's be havin' you! KAPPOOW! 8) :wink:


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