Tasmanian Government prepares for another mass fish kill

Failure to force harvest an embarrassment, says peak environment group. 
 
Following Friday's revelations that Australia's largest fisheries companies and the state government have met to prepare for another mass fish kill in Tasmania, the state's peak environment group is calling on the Tasmanian Government to issue a clear directive to companies to remove salmon from one of Australia's major farming areas, Macquarie Harbour.  

At least 50,000 salmon have suffocated or died of diseases in the harbour in the last month, but the Tasmanian regulator has failed to issue a single management directive to companies, despite the level of environmental and biosecurity risks and serious impacts on federally protected endangered species in the harbour. 

"Aside from the obvious fish welfare and brand damage concerns, the EPA appears to be forgetting that there is an endangered species in the middle of this fish kill. The Maugean Skate is protected by Federal law and unlike farmed salmon, is a mort you cannot reintroduce," says Laura Kelly, Director, Environment Tasmania.

"The EPA has done nothing.In the face of mass fish kills, disease outbreaks and lower oxygen levels in this major farming region than this time last year. The EPA has not issued a single management directive or fine, meaning the companies are self-regulating in the face of a major environmental and biosecurity threat and literally getting away with murder of an endangered species," Ms Kelly says. 

"A fish harvest directive needs to be issued immediately."
 

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