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The Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute is working with a private equity firm to raise 11 million pounds of fish in cages about four and a half miles off of Mission Bay. It’s the most ambitious aqua-culture project of its kind in the United States.
The vast majority of seafood Americans eat comes from another country. This project, and others like it, could help Americans decrease their reliance on foreign fish and provide local jobs.
But the project is facing criticism. The San Diego water department is worried about the amount of poop created by millions of fish and how that poop might impact its efforts to monitor water quality near a sewage treatment plant in Point Loma. The Navy has said it’s concerned about the fish farm interfering with operations.
There are other problems, too: Hubbs has a much smaller fish breeding operation in Carlsbad and some fish spawned as part of that effort have horns, deformed hearts or are blind.
On this week’s San Diego Explained, VOSD’s Ry Rivard and NBC 7 San Diego’s Monica Dean dive into the massive fish farm project and the challenges it’s facing.