Yesterday, Wild Fish Conservancy, Center for Biological Diversity, Center for Food Safety, and Friends of the Earth filed a lawsuit challenging the recent Washington Department of Fish and Game decision to permit open-net salmon farming in Washington’s Puget Sound. Do you remember the 2017 Cooke Aquaculture net-pen collapse that released 260,000 non-native Atlantic salmon into Puget Sound? Well, this lawsuit challenges Cooke receiving another permit.
Kurt Beardslee, executive director of Wild Fish Conservancy, said: “It’s outrageous that once again the State is leaving the oversight of this industry to the public. After the Cypress net pen collapsed, our research discovered that nearly every fish that escaped was infected with a pathogenic exotic salmon virus that had been undetected by WDFW and unreported by Cooke. Our litigation has won settlements many times larger than the penalties levied by the State, and the State has left it to us and the pens’ neighbors to detect serious problems. Given this history, it is beyond comprehension that WDFW would grant this permit without first completing a comprehensive assessment of its effects on our salmon, our sound, and our killer whales.”
For more check out Wild Fish Conservancy’s Press Release.