Frenchman Bay sits at the foot of Acadia National Park. It is a beautiful and special place in Maine.

Now it also is a targeted site for fin-fish in-water aquaculture and there are so many questions that revolve around this potential lease which would be owned by a Norwegian company. American Aquaculture, funded through European investors, want to raise salmon.

Those 66 million fish would be raised in a plastic polymer bag sitting in the ocean just north of Bar Harbor. Raising may be too generous a word, rather, the fish will be swimming in circles in containers in the water. The cold clean waters of Maine get pumped in and water gets pumped out as the fish swim in circles. And that methodology leads to so many questions about the potential damage to the environment.

What will the water pumped back into the bay be like? Will it affect our local marine animals and plants? Will the state have effective regulations in place to do no harm to the environment? How will the container be kept clean? How many jobs for locals will it really create? I ask that question as much of it is said to be handled remotely.

Why is it in this area of Maine – an area that attracts millions of visitors a year? Whose interests are really being served?

Kathleen Rybarz

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