For the Tasmanian Salmon Industry to expand into new coastal and offshore areas it needs to demonstrate responsible stewardship and sustainable use of natural resources to maintain the support of Government agencies and the Tasmanian community. For Government agencies to assess the environmental implications of the Salmon Industry they need to understand the environmental footprint of the industry, the capacity of the environment to assimilate waste loads, vulnerable locations where impacts might be foreseen, suitable locations and times to monitor change, possible future environmental trajectories under various management scenarios, and appropriate impact mitigation strategies. With this information the State Government and Industry can demonstrate best practice in the strategic and sustainable expansion of farm sites, minimise environmental impacts and keep the Tasmanian community well informed.
An information system is required that can report and compare current water quality conditions from models and observations, provide short-term forecasts, analysis of scenario projections of plausible future conditions for planning purposes and link to decision support tools to optimise management response and monitoring programs. The modelling and information system needs to have the capability for future deployment in multiple sub-regions of interest around Tasmania. This requires a downscaling approach where high-resolution local models can be rapidly deployed within a larger scale regional model encompassing the whole of Southeast Australia.
One region with an urgent need for such a modelling and information system is Storm Bay where knowledge gaps in hydrodynamic circulation, nutrient sources and transformations, the assimilative capacity of the environment and the footprint of proposed farms, currently limit responsible industry expansion and governance.