LatinNews Daily - 10 January 2023

In brief: NGOs combat salmon fishing in Chile’s national parks

*A specialist environmental court in Chile will hear arguments requesting that Nova Austral, a salmon farmer and processor operating in Chile’s southern Magallanes region, should be sanctioned for altering the seabed in the Alberto de Agostini National Park, a large park stretching through the provinces of Magallanes, Tierra del Fuego, and Chilean Antarctica. According to US-based NGO Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (Aida), the company has carried out actions to hide the lack of oxygen in its facilities in the park, including hiring an external company to pump oxygen. Aida has been working with the Chilean branch of international environmental NGO Greenpeace and local environmental NGO Fima to campaign against the actions of Nova Austral in Chile. On 3 January, the same court ruled to prevent Nova Austral from setting up two projects in waters adjacent to the Kawésqar National Park, one of the largest nature reserves in the world, by denying it the necessary environmental permits. Matías Asun, national director for Greenpeace in Chile, said the ruling marked the “beginning of overturning the explicit intention of the salmon industry to settle in the waters of national parks and pristine areas of Chilean Patagonia.” According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), salmon is Chile’s largest food and agricultural export and the second largest total export sector after copper.

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