[env-trinity] CBB: Study Looks At Sustainable Salmon Production, Says Salmon Fisheries Low Global Scale Impact

frankemerson@redshift.com frankemerson at redshift.com
Wed Nov 25 15:35:39 PST 2009

Hello Tom,

In what way are Canadians and Europeans ahead of "us" regarding open net
pen salmon rearing and salmon life cycles? What was the result the

The list of researchers on this "study: should be enough to tell you it
was supported by the salmon farming industry.

"School for Resource and Environmental Studies, Dalhousie University,
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Sustainable Food Production, SIK - Swedish Institute
for Food and Biotechnology, Gothenburg, Sweden, Knowledge Systems,
Ecotrust, Portland, Oregon, and School of Food Engineering, Pontificia
Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso, Valparaiso, Chile"

Other than ecotrust they are all "food institutes" and "food engineering
schools" in the heart of salmon farming regions of the world. The
reference to land based production is the giveaway. Many scientists in BC
are demanding that provincial govts require salmon pens to be closed
contained pens, with effluent treatment to prevent the contamination of
out migrating smolts with sea lice, as well as the pollution that is
changing fjords near the pens.

I sincerely urge you to go to this scientists blog and read about what is
happening in BC.


There are many "youtube" vids on Alexandras work in BS and the Broughton
Archipelago also.



Thank you,

Frank Emerson

> <html>
> <body>
> <font face="Garamond" size=4>Two years ago I served, together with
scientists from Canada and Europe, on a National Environmental
> Trust-hosted expert panel to conduct a life cycle assessment of Pacific
salmon fisheries and of Pacific pen-rearing operations. <br><br> It was an
eye-opening experience for me - the Europeans (and for that matter, people
all over the planet) are way ahead of us in this kind of analysis and in
applying life cycle assessment results to all kinds of consumer choices
and government rule-making - '<u>way</u> ahead<br><br> It will be a
delight to see this kind of thinking arrive, even slowly,
> the U.S<br><br>
> Bill Kier<br><br>
> </font>&nbsp;At 10:42 AM 11/25/2009, Sari Sommarstrom wrote:<br><br>
<blockquote type=cite class=cite cite="">THE COLUMBIA BASIN
> Weekly Fish and Wildlife News<br>
> <a href="http://www.cbbulletin.com/" eudora="autourl">
> www.cbbulletin.com</a><br>
> November 25, 2009<br>
> Issue No. 510<br><br>
> <br>
> <font size=4><b>* Study Looks At Sustainable Salmon Production, Says
Salmon Fisheries Low Global Scale Impact<br><br>
> </b></font>Popular thinking about how to improve food systems for the
better often misses the point, according to the results of a three-year
global study of salmon production systems.<br><br>
> Rather than pushing for organic or land-based production, or worrying
about simple metrics such as &quot;food miles,&quot; the study finds that
> the world can achieve greater environmental benefits by focusing on
improvements to key aspects of production and distribution.<br><br> For
example, what farmed salmon are fed, how wild salmon are caught and the
choice to buy frozen over fresh matters more than organic vs.
conventional or wild vs. farmed when considering global scale
> environmental impacts such as climate change, ozone depletion, loss of
critical habitat, and ocean acidification.<br><br>
> The study is the world's first comprehensive global-scale look at a
> food commodity from a full life cycle perspective, and the researchers
examined everything ­ how salmon are caught in the wild, what they're fed
> when farmed, how they're transported, how they're consumed, and how all
of this contributes to both environmental degradation and socioeconomic
> The researchers behind the study sought to understand how the world can
develop truly sustainable food systems through the lens of understanding
the complexities associated with wild and farmed salmon production,
processing and distribution. They found that decision-making for food must
learn to fully account for the life cycle socioeconomic and
environmental costs of food production. How we weight the importance of
such impacts is ultimately subjective and in the realm of policy and
culture, but using a comprehensive approach provides a more nuanced
process for informed decision-making. Even food has a lifecycle, and the
world must learn to comprehend the full costs of it in order to design
reliable, resilient food systems to feed a world population that's
forecast to grow to 9 billion in less than 40 years.<br><br>
> The researchers chose salmon as their focus as it exemplifies important
characteristics of modern food systems, yet offers unique opportunities
for comparison. It is available around the world at any time and in any
location, regardless of season or local ecosystem, it is available in
numerous product forms, and it is distributed using a variety of
transport modes. Unlike many other food systems, however, it is
> from both wild sources and a range of farmed production systems.
> While it isn't easy to balance people, profit and planet, the world must
do much better. Food production, in aggregate, is the single largest
source of environmental degradation globally. Impacts vary dramatically
depending on what, where and how food is produced. <br><br>
> For example, early results of the study found that growing salmon in
land-based farms can increase total greenhouse gas emissions ten-fold over
conventional farming depending on how and where the farming is
> Similarly, while organic farming of many crops offers benefits over
conventional production, organic salmon production gives rise to impacts
very similar to conventional farming due to the use of resource
> fish meals and oils. Beyond the farm, it's important to also consider
> total impact of food preparation. Driving to the store alone and then
cooking alone at home has a big environmental impact. Going out to dinner
> more, or just eating more frequently with friends and family at home,
> huge benefit.<br><br>
> For concerned consumers, it's important to think about how food was
produced and transported ­ not just where it was produced ­ when making
food choices.<br><br>
> Initial Findings from the study:<br><br>
> --- Fish should swim, not fly. Air-freighting salmon, and any food,
results in substantial increases in environmental impacts. If more frozen
> food were consumed, more container ships would be used to ship food.
Container ships are by far the most efficient and carbon-friendly way to
transport food. Globally, the majority of salmon fillets are currently
consumed fresh and never frozen. In fish-loving Japan, which gets much of
> its fish by air, switching to 75 percent frozen salmon would have more
benefit than all of Europe eating locally farmed salmon. <br>
> --- The choice to buy frozen matters more than organic vs. conventional
or wild vs. farmed. <br>
> --- A full life cycle assessment approach to research provides a more
nuanced process for informed decision-making. Even food has a lifecycle,
and we must comprehend the full impact to make meaningful improvements to
> food systems. Tradeoffs may be inevitable. <br>
> --- Contrary to what is widely perceived, the vast majority of
> broad-scale resource use and environmental impacts (energy inputs, GHG
emissions, etc) from conventional salmon farming result from the feeds
used to produce them. What happens at or around a farm site may be
important for local ecological reasons but contributes very little to
global scale concerns such as global warming. <br>
> --- Across the globe, what is used to feed salmon and the amounts of
feeds used vary widely. As a result, impacts are very different.
Norwegian salmon farming resulted in generally lower overall impacts while
farmed salmon production in the UK resulted in the greatest
impacts. <br>
> --- Reducing the amount of animal-derived inputs to feeds (e.g. fish
meals and oils along with livestock derived meals) in favor of
> plant-based feed inputs can markedly reduce environmental impacts. <br>
--- Growing organic salmon using fish meals and oils from very resource
intensive fisheries results in impacts very similar to conventional farmed
salmon production. <br><br>
> If not planned carefully, technological fixes aimed at addressing local
environmental challenges associated with conventional salmon farming can
result in substantial increases in global-scale environmental
> impacts.<br><br>
> In general, salmon fisheries result in relatively low global-scale
environmental impacts. <br><br>
> However, substantial differences exist between how salmon are caught.
Catching salmon in large nets as they school together has one tenth the
impact of catching them in small numbers using baited hooks and lures.
> Across salmon production systems ­ and all food systems ­ the world is
often swimming against the tide. Instead of working with nature, people
work against it, chasing fish in the open ocean with big diesel engines or
substituting energy demanding pumping and water treatment for free
ecosystem services in salmon farming. We can and must do better than this
> and start to swim with the tide. <br><br>
> The most recent published paper from the study can be seen in the
> Environmental Science &amp; Technology:
> <a href="http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es9010114"
> http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es9010114</a><br>
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