Newfoundland appealing Grieg court decision


Province appealing Grieg court decision

James McLeod jmcleod@thetelegram.com
Published on August 25, 2017

The provincial government is appealing the Grieg Placentia Bay aquaculture court ruling, according to a news release from the Atlantic Salmon Federation (ASF) Friday afternoon.

The ASF wasn’t too happy about the news.

“The effort from this government to avoid a full environmental assessment for Grieg’s Placentia Bay project is outrageous,” Bill Taylor, President of the Atlantic Salmon Federation, stated in the news release. “The province is obviously willing to incur huge additional costs and delay the process further in an attempt to avoid what the judge said was a ‘duty owed to the people of the province.’”

The provincial government approved the Grieg plans for a large aquaculture operation in Placentia Bay without going to a full-blown environmental impact statement — the most rigorous form of environmental assessment.

After the ASF appealed that decision to the Newfoundland Supreme Court, Justice Gillian Butler ruled in July that the government had exceeded its authority, and the significant public concerns and possible environmental impacts meant it needed a more thorough review.

If the Grieg salmon aquaculture operation in Placentia Bay goes ahead, it would be the largest expansion of salmon aquaculture in eastern Canada, and the first commercial use of a European-strain triploid salmon in eastern Canada.

In an emailed statement Friday, Environment Minister Eddie Joyce confirmed the government is appealing Butler’s decision.

“We have committed to developing economic opportunities in the province, yet we take the responsibility to protect the environment very seriously,” Joyce’s statement said.

“Government will be meeting with Grieg to discuss regulatory requirements, the next steps in the environmental process and the proponent’s plans for addressing outstanding requirements. Aspects of the environmental assessment process that can continue include: descriptions of alternative methods of carrying out the project; a proposed set of measures to minimize effects; and, a proposed program to monitor the effects of the project.”