Posted by: Peter Urpeth | April 1, 2011

Fish Farm Planning Application Refused!

For those who have not already heard our good news – last night’s meeting of the full Comhairle, finally refused planning consent for the proposed fish farm in Broad Bay, and for the shore base at Brevig Harbour.

This is a very significant victory for the local community, and for all those who have fought to protect the wild fish and the environment of Broad Bay.  In making its decision we feel that the Comhairle has struck the right balance between the need for economic development and the protection of the local environment in the long term.

This Campaign thanks Conmhairle planning staff for their independent and meticulous work in their response to Lighthouse Caledonia’s planning applicaitons.

The Comhairle give three reasons for the rejection of the fish farm application, and the separate appolicaiton for the shore base at Brevig Harbour, which is automatically rejected following the refusal for the fish farm.

The three reasons are:

Reason 1 – The Environmental Statement is considered to be deficient of a robust, independent and accurate assessment of the potential impacts on the wild trout populations in Broadbay from sea-lice dispersal and on salmon and trout populations arising from containment failure (mooring failure or interaction with predator species).

Reason 2 – It is considered that the moorings analysis in the Environmental Statement is not sufficient to allow the design and specification of the mooring system to be verified, to the satisfaction of the Planning Authority.

Reason 3 – The Environmental Statement fails to provide an adequate appraisal of the main alternative sites studied and therefore to defend the choice of site on an environmental basis.

We feel that the Comhairle’s decision is potentially groundbreaking in the way it addresses the issue of protection of sea trout from sea lice infestation, especially, and of wild salmon and sea trout from the risk of mass farmed salmon escapes.

A massive thank you to all who took the time and care to oppose this plan. Between the various bodies and many individuals who campaigned against this fish farm we have achieved a huge victory, but we must now be on our guard, and this campaign intends now to fully focus on keeping fish farms away from Broad Bay and to ensuring that this situation does not reoccur.
The Comhairle’s full decision can be read at:



  1. Outstanding result, hopefully with the success of the No Fish Farms In Broad Bay campaign other groups may be encouraged to take action and strive to halt the proliferation of these aesthetically abhorrent and environmentally disastorous adventures. – Congratulations to one and all – remain vigilant.

  2. A moratorium on industrial scale fish farms in the UK is a necessary safeguard for the future of our economy, our marine environment and generations of human health. It is vital that people sign this national petition as well as continue to support their local petitions.Please vote at:

    Western Isles Council has received an application to site an industrial scale fish farm off the east coast of Harris, at Plocropol in the Bays of Harris, in a designated National Scenic Area. A 20 cage fish farm roughly the size of half a dozen football pitches will adversely affect the coastal character of the area, wildlife and the marine environment and, the current approach to Harris by boat and ferry. A fish farm this size will produce pollution equivalent to the untreated sewage of a town of 50,000 people.

    To find out more go to Save the Bays of Harris local petition at: and please sign it, and register support on our Save the Bays of Harris Facebook page:

    Your help is needed!

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