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The Arctic Offshore Farming cage uses a lot of technology used in floating rigs, and can hold 3,000 tonnes of salmon. Image: NRS.
The Arctic Offshore Farming cage uses a lot of technology used in floating rigs, and can hold 3,000 tonnes of salmon. Image: NRS.

Norway Royal Salmon has won permission to site its Arctic Offshore Farming project at Fellesholmen off the coast of Tromsø. But Troms County Council rejected its application for a back-up site at Hosøy in Ytre Øyfjord.

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Norway’s Fisheries Directorate has previously granted NRS eight development licences for the concept, which is equivalent to 5,990 tonnes maximum standing biomass.

The semi-submersible Arctic Offshore Farming cages are designed to hold 3,000 tonnes and withstand 15-metre waves in the open sea.

Fishing interests

Yesterday’s decision by Troms County Council followed advice from the Fisheries Directorate and a council committee that placing cages in Ytre Øyfjord would be an impediment to fishing interests.

The council also pointed out that it considered the site at Fellesholmen was sufficient to develop the concept.

The Arctic Offshore Farming concept has been designed by oil rig specialist Aker Solutions and a cage is under construction in Norway’s Fosen shipyard. The first fish are expected to be put in next autumn.

15-metre waves

The cage, designed for a significant wave height of 5-15m, has two flotation collars, or pontoons, with space inside for equipment and storage.

The depth of the cage can be varied, providing protection for fish and nets during stormy conditions

The cage will have a top net which keeps fish 10 metres under water to reduce exposure to salmon lice.

There are integrated air pockets in the structure that allow the salmon to adjust swim bladders during prolonged immersion.

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