The project aims to expand the company’s barramundi farm operations to 13 sites spread across the Buccaneer Archipelago, in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. The total development envelope for the 13 leases is 1,213 hectares.
According to Barramundi Group, the proposed expansion will be staged over a 10-year period. Each stage consists of the construction of one nursery site, supplying 4–5 ocean-based lease areas, each of which will contain 12 sea-cages. The maximum standing biomass per lease area is 4,500 tonnes. The total annual production/standing biomass for the proposal is 30,000 tonnes once fully operational.
The project is expected to create 350-400 direct jobs and local business opportunities for Western Australia as production increases.
The application was referred to the State Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) in May, which was followed by an initial consultation period and preliminary evaluation to determine the level of assessment for the proposed expansion. The EPA has now determined a level of assessment for the project.
The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (WA) (DPRID) are reviewing the Aquaculture License application, this has been open for public comment: Ocean Barramundi Expansion Project | EPA Western Australia. The company is awaiting feedback on the proposal from the Environmental Protection Authority.
The Project was also referred to the Department of Agriculture Water and the Environment (Federal), DAWE and a further opportunity for public comment is expected to commence soon through the Department’s website. Our stakeholders will be notified once advertising commences.
“BGA is proud of its 18-year history, environmental credentials, and record in the region. The learnings from our current operation have given us the confidence that we can grow in harmony with local flora and fauna, enhance biosecurity and provide even more jobs and opportunities for local communities in this remote part of Australia,” said the company in a press release.
Barramundi Group, which also has farms in Singapore and Brunei, says that it is “committed to developing strong partnerships with Traditional Owners, local communities, and businesses throughout its current and planned expansion in the Kimberley”.
“Our vision is to be considered leaders in the field, and to also apply innovative technologies to our operations. Most importantly, we want the communities that we support to be proud of us as a producer, employer, and partner,” said the company.
“We encourage people to engage with us, and to look on our website for updates on the progression of our Kimberley Ocean Barramundi Project,” it added.