The Marine Farming Planning Act 1995 (Tas.) provides for the planned development, management, and control of marine farming activities in Tasmania. Sustainable development of the aquaculture industry is to be fostered through the preparation of marine farming development plans, which establish the zones where marine farming is allowed in Tasmania's coastal waters.
The Act requires that an environmental impact assessment be made on each proposed marine farming development plan, and it provides opportunity for community input.
The marine farming development plan outlines the extent and type of marine farming allowed and the management controls that apply within each zone. The zone is then available for lease applications. All marine farm lessees must comply with an environmental monitoring program that is specific to the species farmed.
Leases cover the water column, water surface and sea bed and are for 30 years, with an option to renew for a further 30 years.
At April 2002, marine farming development plans:
- had been implemented for Huon River and Port Esperance, D'Entrecasteaux Channel, Tasman Peninsula and Norfolk Bay, Macquarie Harbour, Far North West, Pipeclay Lagoon, Georges Bay, Great Oyster Bay and Mercury Passage, Blackmans Bay, Furneaux Group, and Tamar Estuary;
- were underway for Port Sorell and Pittwater; and
- were under review for D'Entrecasteaux Channel, Huon River and Port Esperance, and Tasman Peninsula and Norfolk Bay.