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Nordic Aquafarms secures discharge permit for Calif. yellowtail farm

October 19, 2023  By  Nestor Arellano

Site map of Nordic Aquafarms' Humboldt County facility. (Image: Nordic Aquafarms)

Nordic Aquafarms said it has moved closer to obtaining approval of its land-based yellowtail fish farm in Humboldt County, Calif. after the company received “unanimous approval” of a permit for wastewater discharge.

The company reported that on Oct. 5, the North Coast Regional Water Quality Board voted 4-0 to adopt the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) order awarding the permit for wastewater discharge for co-permittees Nordic
Aquafarms California and the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation, and Conservation District.

The NPDES permit program addresses water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants to the waters of the United States.


Back in 2021, Nordic Aquafarms said that it was nearing the final stages of its permitting process for the Humboldt facility.

The US$500-million Humboldt project was initially intended to create 80 jobs and produce 50,000 tons of salmon per year.

In April 2023, the company announced that it has decided to switch from raising salmon to yellowtail kingfish at its Humboldt facility.

In securing the discharge permit, Nordic Aquafarms said it is set to continue on the path forward in the permitting process.

“We are hoping to be in front of the Coastal Commission this November and continue the positive momentum. This summer Nordic’s application had also been approved by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, to raise yellowtail kingfish and with each successful step, we look forward to beginning construction and becoming operational,” Brenda Chandler, chief executive officer of Nordic Aquafarms.

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