12 Dec 2012

Petition on salmon farming gets 11,000 signatures

10:39 am on 12 December 2012

A Marlborough Sounds teenager opposed to the expansion of salmon farming in the Sounds has presented an 11,000-signature petition to Parliament.

Leona Plaisier is campaigning against New Zealand King Salmon's proposal to build nine new salmon farms in different parts of the Sounds - eight in areas where marine farming is currently prohibited.

An Environmental Protection Authority Board of Inquiry is considering the company's application and is expected to release a decision soon.

Ms Plaisier, who was named DoC's Conservation Champion, says she started the petition so people could have a say without having to struggle with the lengthy application and hearing process.

She says it's basically intensive farming so the waste and the feed that settles underneath the farms accumulates over time and it also gets pushed through in the currents.

Ms Plaisier presented her petition to Green Party MP Steffan Browning, who's also been outspoken about the salmon farming expansion.

Mr Browning says the Marlborough community realises it already has a huge amount of aquaculture and that there needs to be some areas protected from further marine farming.

He says salmon farming is not sustainable and is always polluting which is hard to mitigate.