Letter to the editor: Lawrence Reichard

Belfast can ill afford Nordic's massive water use

Mon, 10/12/2020 - 4:45pm

I was happy to see your October 9 article on the new Wales Park Community Garden in Belfast. But perhaps Nordic Aquafarms, which, according to the article, contributed to the acquisition of a water line for the garden, could instead give the garden a much bigger gift by abandoning its ill-conceived Belfast industrial fish farm scheme, which threatens the entire water supply of Belfast by annually devouring at least 630 million gallons from our limited aquifer and watershed.

This enormous water usage is even more threatening in the face of the climate crisis, which may be responsible for the considerable drought Maine is currently experiencing. Belfast can ill afford Nordic's massive water use when climate scientists say the climate crisis makes in impossible to predict future performance of aquifers and watersheds.

And now there's news that Nordic's California project may need more than twice as much water as Belfast, per production unit. This begs the question whether Nordic has grossly underestimated its Belfast water usage, something Nordic has so far declined to comment on.

I wish the new community garden all the best as it competes for water with Nordic's massive water needs and the threat that such vast water use poses to the water supply all of Belfast depends on.

Lawrence Reichard lives in Belfast