Since the mid 1990s, inland hatcheries have been licensed by the Inland Fisheries Service under the Inland Fisheries Act 1995, and the marine farming sector has been regulated by the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE) under the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 and the Marine Farming Planning Act 1995. These marine farming licences include environmental conditions to ensure that the operations are sustainable and do not have an unacceptable impact on the marine environment.
On 13 June 2016, the Tasmanian Government announced changes to improve the regulatory framework surrounding finfish farming activities, reflecting the significant growth in the industry. The EPA, as the State's existing independent environmental regulator, was handed the responsibility for the environmental regulation of salmonid hatcheries and farms. The EPA's focus is on the day to day environmental regulation of both marine farming and freshwater hatcheries, while the functions of industry planning and development associated with both the inland and marine finfish farming sectors remain under the jurisdiction of the Minister for Primary Industries and Water.
As of 1 July 2016, the Director EPA was provided relevant delegations under the Marine Farming Planning Act1995 and Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 to manage the environmental regulation. Changes to a number of pieces of legislation are required to transfer into law the ongoing environmental regulatory responsibility for finfish farming to the EPA in a permanent and more comprehensive manner.
To implement these changes, the draft Finfish Farming Environmental Regulation Bill has been prepared. The draft Bill has been released for public comment (until 28 July) and is available through the DPIPWE website at Changes to Salmon Industry Regulation. The draft Finfish Farming Environmental Regulation Bill is scheduled for introduction to Parliament later this year.
Changes to Regulations
The draft Bill includes a new Environmental Licence under Tasmania's Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994. This framework will provide the EPA Director with a clear, independent statutory role for managing the ongoing environmental regulation of the State's finfish farming industry. The Director has established a specifc environmental management section for finfish farming within EPA Tasmania to support him in undertaking his role and responsibilities.
Salmon Regulation Section
134 Macquarie Street
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 03 6165 4599
Fax: 03 6173 0254