Stop Kingfish Farming In Port Stephens

Huon Aquaculture Group Limited, a major salmon farm operator from Tasmania, has partnered with the NSW Department of Primary Industry to acquire an offshore research lease within a Habitat Protection Zone of our Marine Park. Within this lease, 2-3 sea pens will be placed with the intent to trial farm kingfish. Additionally, the company plans to increase this number- to up to 24 pens, following a 5 year trial. Each pen will have a diameter of 52 metres with the total lease occupying approximately 124 hectares of public water.

Members of the Marine Parks Association have concerns for the potential negative impacts the project may have with regards to:

Get Involved!

Over the last six weeks we have begun to circulate petitions and held a community forum event on Wednesday 22nd of June to discuss the issue of fish farming in Port Stephens with the local community. Thank you to all who have attended the session or taken time to sign the petitions. Please continue to share the petition and encourage people to visit a signing station and sign a written petition.  You can also send a letter or email to Rob Stokes MP, NSW Minister for Planning and the Environment how you feel about this industry operating in your marine park.

All issues observed relating to the Marine Aquaculture Research Lease (Kingfish Farm) should be reported directly to Huon Aquaculture’s emergency hotline; 1300 920 987.

To ensure all issues and wildlife interactions are properly recorded and represented in Environmental Impact Studies, the Marine Parks Association requests that any members of the public reporting on issues with the MARL lease also complete the following form so that the Marine Parks Association can follow up on any arising issues. Click here to complete a report.

Sign and share the online petition at!


Sign the Written Petition

If you're a resident or citizen of New South Wales, sign the written petition at the following signing stations:

  • Imagine Cruises

    Petitions available on board vessels or at the company office. 
    17 Port Stephens Drive, Anna Bay.

  • Tilligerry Habitat
    2E King Albert Ave, Tanilba Bay.

  • Port Stephens Visitors Information Centre
    60 Victoria Parade, Nelson Bay.

  • Let's Go Adventures- Dive Nelson Bay
    8 Teramby Road, Nelson Bay

  • Feet First Dive
    17/34 Stockton St, Nelson Bay

  • Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters
    686 Marsh Rd, Bobs Farm


If you would like to volunteer to collect signatures for the petition, please email

Send a Letter to NSW Minister for Planning and the Environment, Rob Stokes

Have an impact by making a submission directly to Rob Stokes MP, NSW Minister for Planning and the Environment. It should only take a few minutes. Download the template or copy the text below, then add your details and send to the address below. You can also copy your letter to the Ministry of Tourism. 

To write your own letter, please send to: 
The Hon. Rob Stokes MP
NSW Minister for Planning and the Environment

1725 Pittwater Road


Copy your letter to the NSW Minister for Tourism:
The Hon. Stuart Ayres, MP

NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism & Major Events

Level 19
52 Martin Place



To the Hon. Rob Stokes, MP

NSW Minister for Planning & the Environment


Dear Minister,


I wish to voice my concerns about the construction of sea pens and kingfish farming within the Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park, to be undertaken by Huon Aquaculture Group Limited in partnership with the Department of Primary Industries.


My concerns include:

  • Loss of public waters

  • Major impacts on existing tourism operations

  • Pollution and pathogens which may impact other wild species

  • Interference with species already utilising this area such as humpback whale migration, dolphin feeding grounds, nascent fur seal breeding colony, endangered species such as grey nurse shark and pelagic sea birds, notably albatross and petrels

  • Navigation issues for vessels traveling between Broughton Island and Port Stephens

  • Potential for attracting large predators in an area regularly frequented by people in the water (eg divers, swimming with dolphins)

  • It being located in a Habitat Protection Zone of the Marine Park, which while legitimate, perhaps the Precautionary Principle should apply


I ask that you act immediately to relocate the sea pens and aquaculture projects of Huon Aquaculture Group Limited and Department of Primary Industries south of Port Stephens, in the Stockton Bight. I also ask that you ban the construction and development of fish farming aquaculture projects within the Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park, including those currently in varying stages of planning and development.


As a voting member of the public, I implore you to act as quickly as possible on this issue.