Washington Won’t Renew Leases For Puget Sound Fish Farms

The Washington state Department of Natural Resources said Monday it will not renew a fish-farming company’s last remaining leases on net pens in Puget Sound.

Department officials said Cooke Aquaculture has until Dec. 14 to finish steelhead farming and start deconstructing its equipment. Cooke’s pens are located in Rich Passage near Bainbridge Island and Hope Island in Skagit Bay.

Letters sent from the Department of Natural Resources to the Canada-based company on Monday indicate Cooke had a history of failing to comply with the provisions outlined in contracts. Cooke didn’t comment on the decision, but a representative told the Seattle Times the company may do so later.

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