Ministry for Primary Industries releases proposal to relocate six King Salmon farms in the Marlborough Sounds

Salmon in a King Salmon hatchery, in Marlborough.
SUPPLIED

Salmon in a King Salmon hatchery, in Marlborough.

The central government wants to relocate up to six salmon farms in the Marlborough Sounds, forcing a change to the region's aquaculture rules. 

The Ministry for Primary Industries has said moving New Zealand King Salmon farms in the Pelorus Sound and the Tory Channel area to different locations would bring environmental and economic benefits. 

Waitata Bay, in the Marlborough Sounds, would not be moved.
DEREK FLYNN/FAIRFAX NZ

Waitata Bay, in the Marlborough Sounds, would not be moved.

The plan comes after months of discussions with the Marlborough Sounds Salmon Working Group, which included representatives from the Marlborough District Council, MPI, community and interest groups, iwi, and NZ King Salmon. 

Kenepuru and Central Sounds Residents Association member Hanneke Kroon, who sat on the working group, was concerned about the proposal, saying it bypassed the usual safeguards. 

READ MORE: 
* Three Marlborough Sounds salmon farms in the spotlight after failing to meet environmental guidelines
New Zealand leading the way with sustainable salmon 
New salmon farms in the Marlborough Sounds nearly ready

One new salmon farm is proposed for the Tory Channel: two would be removed.
SUPPLIED

One new salmon farm is proposed for the Tory Channel: two would be removed.

Relocating the farms would require amending the council's Marlborough Sounds Resource Management Plan, which the ministry could alter by recommending regulations under the Resource Management Act. 

"It bypasses the council, it bypasses the Environment Court," Kroon said. ​

According to an MPI consultation document, consent applications would not be publicly notified as they would usually be during the resource consent process, for residents to make submissions.

Some of the proposed new sites in the Pelorus Sound area.
SUPPLIED

Some of the proposed new sites in the Pelorus Sound area.

However the council could still give "limited notification" to any affected person, to enable them to have their say. 

Ad Feedback

"The regulations will address the substantive effects of salmon farming, and the public has the opportunity to input at this stage," the document said. 

There will be an eight-week consultation period on the proposal, beginning today. 

Kroon said she understood the salmon working group was set up to address best practice issues, and the proposal that had come out of the discussions - six new farms - seemed completely different.

The entrance to Pelorus Sound had a rich array of wildlife, including the rare king shag, and she was concerned about the salmon farms' effects on wildlife. 

"This whole idea is to the detriment of the Pelorus Sound," she said. 

The salmon working group was set up last year, in response to a Cawthron Institute report which revealed King Salmon's Forsyth, Ruakaka and Otanerau farms were not running in a way that enabled them to meet best management practice guidelines.

The report found pollution under pens and seabed enrichment, caused by fish waste falling on the seabed and uneaten fish food.​

King Salmon has resource consents for 11 salmon farms within the Sounds, and the MPI consultation document said three other low-flow areas were also predicted to have issues meeting the best-practice standards. 

Existing King Salmon farm sites which could be relocated are Ruakaka Bay, Otanerau Bay, Forsyth Bay, Waihinau Bay, and two farms in Crail Bay which have not been stocked since 2011. 

Potential new sites are Blowhole Point North and South, the middle of the Waitata channel, the southern part of Richmond Bay, and Horseshoe Bay, as well as Tio Point in the Tory Channel.​

The consultation paper said moving farms to sites where the water was deeper, with higher flows, would provide for a more sustainable, productive, and resilient industry. 

"To secure a consent to farm at a new site, applicants would have to relinquish consents and close down operations at an existing lower flow site," the document said. 

Kroon said she was worried if the proposal was implemented the residents' association would have no recourse apart from the High Court, which would be expensive. 

A Marlborough District Council spokeswoman said the council was satisfied the proposal put forward reflected various perspectives.  

"The consultative process getting underway now allows for more input from those various viewpoints," she said. 

King Salmon chief executive Grant Rosewarne said the new proposal had the dual benefit of being better for the environment and better for the company. 

In the proposal there was no overall increase in total surface area used for salmon farming in the Sounds. 

MPI predicted the relocated farms could contribute up to $49 million annually to Marlborough's regional GDP, and up to 511 fulltime jobs. 

"Economic gains would occur over about 10 to 15 years as the sites are relocated and then developed in stages," the consultation paper said. 

Kaikoura MP Stuart Smith said he was confident the process had been handled appropriately, and was satisfied there were both environmental and economic benefits to the proposal. 

Kenepuru and Central Sounds Residents Association marine committee member Trevor Offen was worried and said the mid-channel farm would raise a multitude of issues in terms of navigation and visual concerns. 

It was generally understood Horseshoe Bay and Richmond Bay were also too warm to farm salmon, Offen said. 

However Rosewarne said the company's high-flow site in the Pelorus Sound area got good results, despite the temperature. 

"The flow in the area seems to make up for that." 

The MPI consultation paper said King Salmon would be required to provided advanced real-time monitoring buoys to ensure cumulative water quality effects were monitored and managed. 

Public drop-in sessions would be held during the consultation period, and hui would be held with iwi authorities. 

Confirmed dates, times and venues for public drop-in sessions and public hearings would be available on the MPI website. 

Written submissions had to be received by 5pm on March 27. 

A  Marlborough Salmon Farm Relocation Advisory Panel comprised of independent resource management experts would hear submissions.

 - The Marlborough Express

Comments

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

Blistering pace

Waitākere Cricket Club's Ben Lister has been called up to Auckland's senior squad for this season.

Young west Auckland bowler Ben Lister called up to Auckland Aces.

Million dollar wind fall

The winning ticket in Wednesday night's $1 million draw was sold at Countdown Browns Bay on Auckland's North Shore.

Mid-week celebrations for a lucky Aucklander after Lotto win.

Children love the taniwha

Mahi Pai at Manukau Institute of Technology.

More than 1500 South Auckland youngsters were treated to the very popular Mahi Pai taniwha performance over Māori Language Week.

Wide Awake at Hawkins Theatre

Hawkins Theatre is staging the play Wide Awake.

An award winning children's play is hitting the stage in Papakura.

Wellington

Eli gains loyal, helpful friend video

Six-year-old Eli Burkhalter with  his new assistance dog Taffy.

Taffy the golden labrador is a welcome companion for six-year-old Waikanae boy.

Kids sick on synthetics

Synthetic drugs, often mixed with dried leaves resembling cannabis, have claimed at least 20 lives in New Zealand this ...

Youngest was just 5 as three Porirua kids taken to hospital severely ill.

SH1 blockage cleared

NZTA advised of delays on around the Paremata roundabout and Mana on State Highway 1 after a three-car crash at Plimmerton.

Minor delays continue after a two-car crash near Plimmerton.

Capital train strike likely

Capital commuters are likely to face disruptions as rail workers prepare to strike.

Disruptions ahead for Wellington rail commuters as employment dispute boils over.

Canterbury

'Bound together by cancer' video

Christchurch father of two  Kevin "Chalky" Carr received the news that his pancreatic cancer was back  and his prognosis ...

This time last week, cancer patient Chalky Carr had never met Isla Lunn. Now he's raising $100,000 for the 7-year-old.

Service 'horrific' video

Michelle Bishop is upset at the service received by funeral home Poppy Funerals following the death of her daughter ...

Woman calls for funeral industry to be regulated after ongoing problems following her daughter's death.

Who won the final debate? video

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - SEPTEMBER 20:  Labour party leader Jacinda Ardern speaks during the TVNZ Vote 2017 2nd Leaders ...

Jacinda Ardern looked and sounded like a woman in a fight for her political life. And she is.

Bike theft at bottle-point

Two friends were robbed of their bikes at bottle-point near Papanui High School.

The two robbers fled on bikes stolen from men in Northcote, Christchurch.

Waikato

Seven daring ducklings rescued 

The rescue operation saw the safe retrieval of seven ducklings from a Whitianga drain.

It took half an hour to rescue the seven ducklings from the depths of the drain.

Cocaine, cash found

The armed offenders squad helped execute a search warrant in Te Aroha.

Seven searches in Te Aroha were undertaken netting cocaine, cash and five arrests in a pre-dawn raid.

Historic pub killing set for trial

Chris Bush was shot and killed in October 1987.

Two men to stand trial next year over the murder of pub manager Chris Bush 30 years ago.

Kiwis want water levy

Farmers protested perceived attacks from politicians in Morrinsville on Monday, September 18. A new survey shows the ...

The majority of Kiwis want to see farmers pay for water use, a new survey shows.

Taranaki

Ngā Manu Kōrero begins

Dr Ruakere Hond addressed the manuhiri (visitors).

Students from 52 schools across Aotearoa have arrived in New Plymouth for a speech competition.

Principal search

Lynda Stuart, president of the NZEI, said there are ore principal vacancies than usual.

Four schools are looking for principals, and another four are looking for deputies and assistants.

The 'hero' in the beauty aisle

Shane White's training kicked into action as soon as he got to the man who collapsed in the beauty aisle.

Ian Foreman collapsed in a New Plymouth supermarket only for the produce manager to save his life.

Truck rolls, spills load of urea

A truck rolled on Opunake Rd, spilling urea, and blocking the area to traffic.

Truck and trailer unit rolls and spills load.

Manawatu

The final debate video

From left, Greens candidate Thomas Nash, NZ First MP Darroch Ball, National candidate Adrienne Pearce, Money Free Party ...

Palmerston North candidates battle over mental health and Manawatū Gorge at final debate.

MP flees farmers

Labour candidate for Palmerston North Iain Lees-Galloway left a farmer meeting about irrigation tax early.

Labour MP claims he was "physically pushed" and his van rammed.

Suspected armed robbery at BP

The BP service station in Main St, Palmerston North, has had another suspected aggravated robbery.

Two people are believed to have carried weapons into a BP and robbed it in Palmerston North.

Debate strikes useful balance

The Manawatu Standard candidates debate was broadcast live on Facebook.

OPINION: Election campaign meeting mixes information with humour and differences.

Nelson

'What's a candidate?' video

Birchwood School students from left Jacob 8, Talei 9, Mia 8, talk to Stuff about their thoughts on the election and politics.

They can't legally vote until 2029, but they still have strong views on the election.

Earthquake jolts NZ

The quake was centred 30 kilometres northeast of Seddon.

Central New Zealand jolted by a short and sharp earthquake.

Power back on

A power outage on Wednesday afternoon has affected residents in Richmond, Brightwater, Wakefield and Mapua.

Power has been restored to 12,000 homes and businesses after a Transpower fault. 

Kea shooter sentenced

A man's been sentenced to 200 hours community work for killing a kea.

A man who shot at kea who were damaging his property has been sentenced to community work.

Marlborough

Dinner's in the bag

Sous chef Emily Hulburt, 5, helps out in the kitchen preparing a 'My Food Bag' recipe.

By her own admission, reporter Paula Hulburt is a whizz with a microwave. As the first delivery of My Food Bags arrive in Blenheim, she took one for a test drive.

Earthquake jolts NZ

The quake was centred 30 kilometres northeast of Seddon.

Central New Zealand jolted by a short and sharp earthquake.

Cafe confrontation

Prime Minister Bill English stopped in at BV Gourmet in Blenheim on the campaign trail on Tuesday. (File photo)

PM's coffee break gatecrashed as Labour candidate accuses National supporters of ripping down billboards.

Weather closes newly-fixed rail line

The Main North Line between Picton and Christchurch has been closed due to bad weather, just days after its post-quake ...

Just a single train managed to traverse the newly-repaired rail line from Christchurch to Picton before bad weather closed it again.

South Canterbury

Men's health focus of campaign

Jonty Penney from Timaru is participating in the Distinguished Gentleman's Ride to raise funds for men,s health.

Two Timaru men are taking the health message on the road.

Flow-on concerns

David Hurst, from A J Engineering in Washdyke, is concerned about the impact of the water levy.

S Canty businesses concerned about impact of Labour's water levy, spokesman says concerns unjustified.

New Mackenzie CEO

New Mackenzie council chief executive Suzette van
Aswegen.

A current staff member will take on the top job at the Mackenzie District Council.

'He's a hero,' neighbour says

The remains of the Waipopo property on Wednesday afternoon.

Waipopo man who rescued wife from fire would have used 'every bit of strength'.

Otago

Search for missing man

Missing Dunedin man Stephen Lowe.

More than 30 ground searchers, three search dogs and an aerial search have failed to find any further sign of missing Dunedin man Stephen Lowe

Serial sea lion killer at large video

A sea lion found shot on a Catlins beach in Southland in April.

A serial killer may be targeting New Zealand sea lions, with a $5000 reward on offer in exchange for the culprit.

Fired while on sick leave

The Employment Relations Authority (ERA) has ordered Oamaru-based P&W Painters (PWP) to compensate former employee Paul ...

Company that unfairly fired brush hand while on sick leave also had to compensate an ex-staffer who was called a "baby killer".

Kidnapping duo plead guilty

Nick Miles, 24, and Gary Michael Wilson, 46, have admitted kidnapping a man and dumping him on the outskirts of Dunedin.

Two men kidnapped and dumped another man on the outskirts on Dunedin.

Southland

Youth organisations make appeal

Sam Balloch was one of dozens of volunteers seeking signatures for a petition to keep Number 10 One Stop Shop and ...

Number 10 Youth One Stop Shop and the Invercargill Secondary Schools Network are gathering support for their petition to remain at their current location.

Pound in clear

An animal group and the Invercargill City Council are at odds about how a dog was treated. (File photo)

Ministry for Primary Industries clears the Invercargill City Council over captive bolt use.

Forestry gets favour: ES

Nicol Horrell, chairman of Environment Southland.

''Forestry operators will be able to operate at lower environmental standards than other resource users in Southland."

Quake off Southland coast

A magnitude 5.8 quake struck near Southland.

A 5.8 earthquake hit off the coast of Southland - but its shaking was unnoticeable, GeoNet says.

Ad Feedback