Pollution and Habitat Damage

Mangrove Replanting in Thailand Credit: Lana Gunnlaugson

Some aquaculture practices, such as open net pens and coastal shrimp farming, are conducted  at the expense of sensitive or ecologically important marine habitat.

Dirty Practices Pollute Pristine Environments

Net pens and other systems that release untreated waste and chemicals pollute the surrounding ecosystem, harming marine and freshwater habitats.

The waste created from an open net pen can include fish feces and uneaten food, in addition to pesticides and antibiotics used to control parasites and diseases .

Farm location or ‘siting’ should be separated from sensitive or ecologically important habitats. For example, the cutting down of hundreds of thousands of acres of coastal mangrove forests for shrimp ponds has resulted in more than 50 per cent of the world’s mangrove forests being lost.

  • Avoid open-net farmed salmon. Choose closed containment (U.S.) farmed salmon instead.
  • Avoid pond farmed shrimp. Choose closed containment (U.S.) farmed shrimp instead.
  • Choose closed containment farmed finfish: Arctic char, rainbow trout, barramundi (U.S.), tilapia (U.S.) and salmon (Canada, U.S.).