|Capitol Hill Ocean Week presented an opportunity for AFS to bring congressional staffers and environmental organizations together for “Mythbusting Marine Aquaculture,” a science-focused briefing in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center on June 6. The briefing featured five experts in various aquaculture disciplines to highlight the advances in science, technology, and best management practices that have reduced the environmental footprint and increased the sustainability of marine aquaculture.
Experts challenged outdated perceptions on the use of antibiotics, sustainability of using fish meal and fish oils for feeds, water quality impacts and degradation of the seafloor, effect of fish escapes on wild stocks, and the potential transfer of disease from farmed to wild populations in marine aquaculture. These myths have limited the social acceptance and complicated efforts to advance federal legislation to simplify the regulatory landscape for offshore aquaculture.
Speakers included aquaculture experts Craig Watson, University of Florida; Guillaume Salze, Ph.D., Ajinomoto Animal Nutrition; Mike Rust, Ph.D., NOAA Fisheries; Jennifer Molloy, US EPA; and Halley Froehlich, Ph.D., University of California Santa Barbara.