New site sought for Algoa Bay fish farm
An alternative site is being sought for the Algoa Bay fish farm, economic development, environmental affairs and tourism MEC Oscar Mabuyane says.
This followed complaints from the public about plans for a fish farm at Hobie Beach.
“We are ensuring it will be compliant and also all the processes of environmental impact assessment be done,” Mabuyane said.
Since 2014, the government, through the oceans economy project Operation Phakisa, has been trying to push through fish farming in the Bay, which led to an outcry from residents – mainly about the proposed Hobie Beach site.
Their concerns included that faeces and food waste from the densely packed fish cages would damage the reefs in the area and create an oily film on the surface.
This would attract sharks and negatively affect beach recreation, tourism and water sports, they argued.
Earlier in February, Weekend Post’s sister paper The Herald reported that discussions on fish farming were back on the table after a recent document showed the state had identified four commercial fish farming sites.
Two of the zones, one off Hobie Beach and the other in the Addo Marine Protected Area, remain possibilities, while two others have also been identified.
The new plan has seen three fish farm sites and a mussel or oyster farm identified.
The department of agriculture, forestry and fisheries said the assessment report should be open to the public by next month.
Mabuyane was speaking in Bhisho on Friday ahead of the state of the province address delivered by Eastern Cape premier Phumulo Masualle.
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