The Nordic Aquafarms (NAF) project in California took a key step forward yesterday after the Humboldt County Planning Commission voted unanimously to certify the Environmental Impact Report (EIR). In addition to being a California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requirement, this is also a step forward in the finalization of other Nordic Aquafarms permits. At the same meeting, the commission approved the coastal development permit as well for Terrestrial Development.
Strong basis for the permits to come
Bernt Olav Rottingsnes, Chairman of the Board of Nordic Aquafarms Group AS, has congratulated the NAF U.S. team for reaching this important milestone for their California project. “There are more steps to take, but this will serve as a strong basis for the permits to come”, he said. Once the EIR is certified, Nordic will need to go before the California Coastal Commission and the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board for the next steps in the permitting process.
For her part, Brenda Chandler, Nordic’s U.S. interim CEO and CFO, has extended that thanks to environmental groups and all stakeholders during this first step in Humboldt. “We would especially like to thank our partners, supporters, and the community for their collaborative efforts to help us make this the best project for Humboldt County”, she said. “The support from those that took the time to come and speak at the public hearing, as well as send letters of support is greatly appreciated. It is a reminder of how deeply meaningful our presence in the community will be”.
“We look forward to working with the community as we transform a brownfield site into a fish farm that will produce a fresh, top-quality seafood product”, the company stated. “Our philosophy is to approach environmental and social goals with balance”, added Chandler, “sustainable aquaculture is a solution, a solution to providing healthy protein in an environmentally sound, balanced way”.
Projects on both coasts of the United States
This step forward in California was just what Nordic Aquafarms needed to strengthen its bi-coastal project in the United States. In addition to this Samoa Project in California, the Norwegian-based company has another in Belfast, Maine. The East Coast project obtained all necessary permits from state, local and federal agencies as early as 2021. The company is currently planning it with detailed design and construction permits on a 56-acre site. Nordic Aquafarms is convinced that both projects will provide a significant economic impact to the local areas.
The two salmon farms will complete NAF bi-coastal production service initiative, “providing a delivery of sustainably grown salmon to major populations on the east and west coast”. The U.S. market for salmon is stronger than ever, so the company looks forward to being a leader in the production of locally sourced, high-quality seafood.
About Nordic Aquafarms Inc.
Nordic Aquafarms Inc is a 100% subsidiary of Nordic Aquafarms AS in Norway, one of the leaders in the international land-based seafood segment with production in Europe besides these new projects in the U.S., where they are developing two of the largest land-based seafood projects in the country, one on each coastline. This places Nordic Aquafarms among the top two land-based seafood developers in the U.S. Headquartered in Portland, Maine, in the United States the company has field offices in Belfast, Maine, and Humboldt, California.