A report is questioning the commerical viability of land-based salmon farming.
A report commissioned by government says growing Atlantic salmon in land-based, closed-containment is technically feasible, but its commercial viability remains to be proven.
"Technical feasibility has been demonstrated, though some issues remain to be fully resolved," says the Gardner Pinfold report. "Financial feasibility remains to be confirmed by actual performance of commercial-scale facilities."
The independent report states land-based, closed-containment salmon operations would have to be large-scale to overcome the higher engineering, building, labour and energy costs inherent in their model.
It also noted that because of the efficient water re-circulation processes used in these operations, they do not have to be in coastal communities or rural areas where water supplies are abundant.
The report will help inform the work of the independent aquaculture regulatory review currently under way. The review began in spring 2013 and is expected to have some preliminary work ready for further consideration this summer.
"This report will assist us as we move forward with developing a new, comprehensive aquaculture framework for Nova Scotia," said Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Keith Colwell.
The report is available on the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture website at www.novascotia.ca/fish/ .