Action Alert! Public Hearing in Sarasota, FL


Action Alert! Public Hearing in Sarasota, FL

Based on a significant amount of interest from the public, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is holding a hearing on a draft permit for a fish farm that would operate in the ocean off the west coast of Florida. The hearing will take place on January 28, 2020 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium’s WAVE Center, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota, FL 34236.  

The Velella Epsilon project, proposed by Hawai’i-based Kampachi Farms, would be the first such fish farm to be permitted in U.S. federal waters, setting a dangerous precedent that could expand harmful fish farming practices across the country. If this permit is granted, it would give one company license to create a private enclosure in the ocean and use public resources for its own financial benefit at the expense of the ecosystem, the community, and industries like fishing and tourism in the entire region. 

We have three opportunities for you to demonstrate your opposition of this project (pick one or all three!). Help us make it clear to the EPA that our oceans deserve to be protected. Here’s how you can get involved:  

(1) Attend the January 28th hearing in Sarasota and make oral comments.  Register here.

(2) Join us for a demonstration in front of the WAVE center right before the hearing! (5:00-5:30pm)

(3) Submit written comments to by February 4, 2020.

The Don’t Cage Our Ocean Coalition, along with other local and national organizations, will be showing up at this event.  If you are able to join us in person, please reach out to our policy coordinator, Rosanna Marie Neil ( to coordinate with the group action. 

Join NAMA along with the Don’t Cage our Ocean Coalition and local partners to express our shared opposition to this project at the hearing.  

Public Hearing Details

WHEN: 5:30 pm EST – 9:30 pm EST

WHERE: Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium’s WAVE Center, Sarasota, FL

To learn more about why this project would be a dangerous development, here’s an op-ed by Marianne Cufone, Executive Director of the Recirculating Farms Coalition. She provides a detailed account of why this project would be harmful to communities and our oceans.