When a Hawaii-based aquaculture business proposed a demonstration fish farm project in federal waters off of Sarasota County in 2019, residents along the Gulf Coast voiced concerns about potential environmental impacts — including its potential to exacerbate red tide blooms.
Now, the federal government is considering allowing commercial aquaculture in the Gulf of Mexico — including areas offshore of Collier, Sarasota and Pinellas counties — and is seeking public input as it crafts an assessment of impacts from the sites.
The first of three virtual public meetings on the proposal is scheduled for June 8. Written comments will be accepted through Aug. 1.
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