Shellfish Aquaculture Regulatory Committee (SARC)

The SARC provided valuable input on geoduck provisions for the Shoreline Master Program Guidelines (Chapter 173-26 WAC, Part III). The committee was disbanded in March 2012, one year after the geoduck provisions took effect. These SARC web pages are retained because the meeting notes and background materials related to the committee’s work is still relevant to current aquaculture policy and regulatory work of Ecology.

The 2007 Washington State Legislature passed SSHB 2220 relating to shellfish aquaculture. Codified as RCW 43.21A.681, the law:

  • Commissioned a series of intertidal geoduck aquaculture scientific research studies to be led by Washington Sea Grant.
  • Directed Ecology to develop Shoreline Master Program guidelines for geoduck aquaculture operation siting and operation.
  • Directed the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife to expand the information required for aquatic farm registration.
  • Created a Shellfish Aquaculture Regulatory Committee with members representing a wide range of perspectives. The 14 members represent the shellfish industry, the environmental community, shoreline property owners, four state agencies (Ecology, Fish and Wildlife, Agriculture, and Natural Resources) and tribal governments.

The law outlined three committee tasks:

  1. Develop recommendations for an integrated regulatory process for all current and new shellfish aquaculture projects.
  2. Advise Ecology on geoduck aquaculture guidelines related to local Shoreline Master Programs.
  3. Oversee Sea Grant’s intertidal geoduck scientific research program authorized by the law.

The first committee meeting was held July 2007. Regular meetings were held until January 2009. An additional meeting was held June 2010 to hear an update on Sea Grant research and advise Ecology on rulemaking. The last committee meeting was in March 2012 and coincided with an annual update of the Sea Grant research.

The committee’s recommendations have been summarized in three reports to the legislature:

Additional Information


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2009 Committee Recommendations Report

Shellfish Aquaculture Regulatory Committee Recommendations On Guidelines For Geoduck Aquaculture Operations

2008 Report to the Legislature

Final Progress Report: House Bill 2220 Shellfish Aquaculture Regulatory Committee

2007 Report to the Legislature

Interim Progress Report: House Bill 2220 Shellfish Aquaculture Regulatory Committee