Le Lézard
Classified in: Environment
Subjects: PET, ENI, ANW, CFG

Government of Canada takes action to protect wild Pacific salmon migrating through the Discovery Islands


OTTAWA, ON, Feb. 17, 2023 /CNW/ - Pacific salmon have significant cultural, social, and ecological importance to First Nations and British Columbians, however, they are in serious, long-term decline, with many runs on the verge of collapse. The Government of Canada is taking action to protect these species.

After extensive consultations with First Nations, industry and others, and after closely considering the submissions received, today, the Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard announced her decision not to renew licences for fifteen open-net pen Atlantic salmon aquaculture sites in the Discovery Islands.

As noted by the Cohen Commission, the Discovery Islands area is a key migratory route for wild Pacific Salmon, where narrow passages bring migrating juvenile salmon into close contact with salmon farms.

Recent science indicates that there is uncertainty with respect to the risks posed by Atlantic salmon aquaculture farms to wild Pacific salmon in the Discovery Islands area, as well as to the cumulative effect of any farm-related impacts on this iconic species.

There are multiple stressors on wild salmon, including: climate change; habitat degradation and destruction; regulated fishing as well as illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing. Given the state of wild Pacific salmon, the Government of Canada is taking a highly precautionary approach to manage Atlantic salmon aquaculture in the Discovery Islands area.

The Government of Canada remains committed to developing a responsible plan to transition from open-net pen salmon farming in coastal British Columbian waters to ensure sustainable next-generation aquaculture in Canada.

Quote:

"The state of wild Pacific salmon is dire, and we must do what we can to ensure their survival. This was a difficult but necessary decision. By taking an enhanced precautionary approach in the Discovery Islands area, the Government of Canada will help ensure the well-being of wild Pacific salmon for our children and grandchildren."

The Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

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SOURCE Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region


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