The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
First Commercial Offshore Aquaculture Harvest in U.S. Raises Red Flags
The following is a statement from Food & Water Watch Fish Program Director Mitch Jones:
“Kampachi Farms Founder Neil Simm’s self-congratulatory announcement of the company’s first successful harvest from the first commercial offshore aquaculture facility in federal waters in the United States is an attempt to paper over the company’s problems. The announcement should have mentioned the lawsuit that was filed by Honolulu-based KAHEA—The Hawaiian Environmental Alliance and Food & Water Watch against federal agencies for allowing Kampachi Farms (formerly Kona Blue Water Farms) to operate their aquaculture farm in federal waters with an illegal permit.
"The suit alleges that under federal law, federal agencies can only issue a fishing permit if authorized to do so under a regional Fishery Management Plan, which they were not. Federal agencies—in this case, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)—lacked the statutory authority to issue a fishing permit for Kona Blue’s aquaculture venture. The suit also addresses the fact that NMFS should have required a more rigorous environmental analysis than they did.
"Curiously, despite initial claims that the project would produce 1,600 fish at 8,000 pounds total, the company’s release is completely silent on how much fish was produced, leading us to question how much of a success it actually was. The public has a right to know all the facts. After all, the project, which was partly funded with U.S. tax dollars—$500,000 from the National Science Foundation and $242,889 from NMFS.
“Factory fish farms use and deplete wild fish stocks to feed farmed fish. Since these fish farms contain their stocks in free-floating cages, the fish live in close quarters—just like factory farm pens on land—which breeds disease, threatening both the farmed fish and the wild populations. Fish escapes and equipment loss can also reap havoc on the environment immediately surrounding fish farms. In the summer of 2011, Kampachi Farms reported that they lost two of their empty net pens while towing them out to sea.
“Even without the aid of an adequate environmental impact study, the National Marine Fisheries Service moved forward by prematurely extending a type of fishing gear license for Kampachi Farms to operate their farm. While Kampachi Farms is experimenting in federal waters, they could be inflicting major environmental damage to the ecosystem.”
For more information, click here.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Oil rigs around the world keep pulling crude oil out of the ground, but the global pandemic has sent shockwaves into the market. The supply is up, but demand has plummeted now that industry has ground to a halt, highways are empty, and airplanes are parked in hangars.
Under an agreement negotiated by community groups — represented by NRDC and the Pennsylvania Utility Law Project — the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) will remove thousands of lead water pipes by 2026 in order to address the chronically high lead levels in the city's drinking water and protect residents' health.
By Dave Cooke
So, they finally went and did it — the Trump administration just finalized a rule to undo requirements on manufacturers to improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from new passenger cars and trucks. Even with the economy at the brink of a recession, they went forward with a policy they know is bad for consumers — their own analysis shows that American drivers are going to spend hundreds of dollars more in fuel as a result of this stupid policy — but they went ahead and did it anyway.
By Richard Connor
A blood test that screens for more than 50 types of cancer could help doctors treat patients at an earlier stage than previously possible, a new study shows. The method was used to screen for more than 50 types of cancer — including particularly deadly variants such as pancreatic, ovarian, bowel and brain.
Preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control showed a larger number of young people coming down with COVID-19 than first expected, with patients under the age of 45 comprising more than a third of all cases, and one in five of those patients requiring hospitalization. That also tends to be the group most likely to use e-cigarettes.