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Coastal community prepares to fight Loch Linnhe fish farm

An Argyll beauty spot is under threat from plans for a huge fishing facility, which campaigners argue will have a devastating impact on the local ecosystem. 

Long Live Loch Linnhe is a collective formed from concerned residents around the loch who oppose plans to introduction eight ‘semi-closed’ fish pens, which would house millions of fish. 

The design has never been used in the UK before, and fish pens have raised significant alarm among environmental scientists. When large fish populations are kept in close confinement the build up of waste and waste products such as nitrogen and phosphorus is far more significant, as is the impact on water systems. 

The facility would need a large shoreline installation to run 24-hours a day in order to operate. Meanwhile, the combined sewage waste from the population, as cited in the developer’s original proposal,  would be equivalent to all solid waste produced by Oban being released into the water. more recent analysis suggests the reality may be six times greater. A community consultation will take place on Tuesday 24th October at Appin Community Hall, which residents and other stakeholders in the area are invited to attend.

‘Loch Linnhe is a natural wonder. We cannot stand by and let it be destroyed by this huge, unsustainable, reckless experiment,’ said Jane Hartnell-Beavis, a Long Live Loch Linnhe volunteer member. ‘The proposal by Loch Long Salmon would introduce a brand-new type of salmon farm, one that has proven highly problematic in the small handful of locations it has so far been trialled.

Its scale is astonishing – with the equivalent biomass of 11,000 cows. If this was a livestock farm in the US it would be termed a “mega farm” We are so worried by what we feel would be an irreversible act of vandalism, that our group of brilliant volunteers has compiled extensive evidence that refutes the claims being made by Loch Long Salmon,’ she continued. We are speaking to everyone who is concerned about the proposals and the future of the loch and surrounding area.’

More on fish: 

UK fish stock audit reveals ‘brink of collapse’

Ocean 14 Capital Fund invests in alternative seabed harvesting

‘Intersex’ fish still rife in UK rivers despite improved sewage treatment

Image: Long Live Loch Linnhe

 

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