Letter to the Editor
February 18, 2022
Because I love my home state of Maine and the waters of Frenchman Bay on which I have my house, I keep hoping that by some miracle American Aquafarms will wake up to the reality of the place in which it proposes to farm salmon. Sadly, the full-page ad the company placed in the Jan. 20 issue makes clear that this has not and probably will not happen.
Aside from a single reference in the ad to Gouldsboro and Prospect harbors, the company could be saying it is planning to set up shop in Anywhere, Maine. Nowhere in its flowery language does it mention Frenchman Bay. Is that because after a record year at Acadia National Park, the name of our bay has become familiar to so many people who would object to the fish pens because they’ve had firsthand experience of its beauty? Or is it an inattentive slip, one the company will cunningly now begin to fix because I’ve alerted them to it. Sadly, this has been their modus operandi.
I also have to ask, why is Maine being asked to bear the burden of providing salmon, which is a luxury fish no matter what the company says, to the rest of the U.S. at the risk of degrading its environment, its livelihoods and its future? Why not call for a moratorium on finfish aquaculture until we have figured out if we want it, and if so, how to safely pursue it. We have our hands full locally already with requests for more benign aquaculture lease permits. Though I think we may one day all wake up and realize that we’ve farmed out our entire bay and it is not what we remember it to be.