|CANCER AS AN INDUSTRY
by Myara Sherwood
This time of year millions of people across North America are busy “racing for the cure” for breast cancer, a race we are losing. New cases are up by 33 percent worldwide in the past 10 years. In Canadian hot spots such as Sydney, Nova Scotia, famous for its steel mills and tar ponds, women have a breast cancer rate 57 percent higher than the rest of the province.
BC NDP response and calls on Premier Christy Clark.
received Wednesday Nov 14th from MLA Joe Trasolini’s office
As you know, Justice Cohen released his report into the collapse of the Fraser River sockeye on Oct. 31. While the problems with the Fraser River populations were a relatively recent phenomenon, there have been significant concerns about the state of salmon populations and habitat for the better part of the past decade. So it is no overstatement to say that efforts that this report – as a means to finally take seriously the problems facing fish populations – was long overdue.
What scientists, First Nations, environmentalists, commercial and sport fisheries businesses, fishery workers, and the official opposition now want to know is what action your government will be taking in response to this report.
Of the 75 recommendations Justice Cohen made, more than 20 impact on provincial jurisdiction. The report made several pointed statements about the failure or refusal of your government to take action to protect crucial salmon habitat. Similarly, your government was unreservedly supportive of regulatory changes made under Bill C-38, the federal government’s omnibus budget bill. Those changes will have tremendous negative effects on crucial salmon habitat in the Fraser.
The report makes comments and recommendations about many other issues under the province’s purview, including:
o the BC Riparian Areas Regulation;
o the ongoing examination of the Water Act;
o overall water quality;
o siting of open pen fish farms;
o regulations and acts regarding forestry;
o pesticide use;
o mining effluent;
o gravel extraction;
o agricultural chemical use.
As you can no doubt appreciate, the health of wild salmon populations are a critical factor in the social, environmental, cultural and economic well-being of the coast and, in fact, of the province as a whole. We cannot afford to lose any more time before taking steps to address the health of salmon populations.
I am hopeful you agree and will commit to respond to the Cohen Commission report without further delay to address areas of the report that fall within provincial jurisdiction.
B.C. New Democrat fisheries critic
Thanks for your patience in waiting for a response.
Constituency Assistant to Joe Trasolini MLA, Port Moody-Coquitlam
BC Green Party Responds to Justice Bruce Cohen’s inquiry into the collapse of the Fraser River Sockeye.
Time to put ocean health and wild salmon at the centre of decision-making
i Nov 1st w No Comments x by admin
November 1, 2012, Victoria – The report by Supreme Court Justice Bruce Cohen into the collapse of the Fraser River Sockeye run in 2009 should be interpreted as an alarm bell by the Federal and Provincial governments. Although the report is specific to Fraser River Sockeye, its message speaks loudly about the effects of human activities on all marine species, and on the need for sustainable practices to be researched, identified and implemented.
“The Green Party of BC is impressed with the implications of Justice Cohen’s report,” says leader Jane Sterk. “He acknowledged that climate change is the elephant in the room, raising once again the question of why governments and politicians are not acting.
“We are particularly pleased with the recommendation to curtail fish farms and to phase them out sooner rather than later if research confirms this industrial activity is contributing to the long-term decrease in our wild salmon populations.”
Green Party of BC urges the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to implement the main recommendations of Supreme Court Justice Bruce Cohen, including:
Put an immediate cap on salmon farms in Discovery Island area.
If they pose more than a minimal risk to wild salmon stocks, prohibit salmon farms on Sockeye salmon migratory routes.
Relieve DFO of responsibility to promote aquaculture.
Siting criteria for salmon farms must be based on the best interests of migrating wild stocks of Sockeye Salmon, not the commercial interests of salmon farms.
Green Party of BC concurs with Justice Cohen’s remarks that “Changes to the Fisheries Act by the federal government were poorly timed and considered. Regulations should focus on maintaining habitat and sustainable fishing practices, not just on the fisheries.”
Funding needs to be provided to conduct more research so that sustainable practices can be developed with regard to habitat and fisheries.
“I want to emphasize that the provincial government has a responsibility to act on Justice Cohen’s report. The province grants salmon farm leases and many of those are up for imminent renewal. This is the time to exercise caution. We call on the Agriculture Minister Norm Letnick not to renew leases on migratory routes and in the Discovery islands and to renew others only for short terms so the research Cohen recommended can be done,” concludes Sterk.
Jane Sterk, Ph.D.
Leader, Green Party of BC
Wild Salmon of All Nations have come to call on British Columbia Premier Christy Clark to end Open Net Farmed Salmon leases outside of BC waters.
Wild Salmon People Gather at Premier Christy Clark’s Constituency Office, Wednesday November 14th.
On the heels of the Federal Inquiry by Justice Bruce Cohen calling for immediate removal of salmon farms if scientific evidence reveals more than a minimal risk. We call on Christy Clark to enact the pre-cautionary principle and end Salmon Farming Leases in British Columbia Waters immediately.
Come with signs to show Christy Clark how important Salmon is to British Columbia and ask her to do the right thing for Salmon.
DATE: Wednesday November 14, 2012
LOCATION: 3615 West 4th (between Alma and Dunbar)
Please also sign this petition to make your voice heard.
Award winning independent scientist, Dr. Alexandra Morton has confirmed her attendance.
LIVE STREAMING HERE
If you can’t make it in person to today’s action, here are some suggested actions.
CALL LOCAL TALK RADIO
“Help us push back against misinformation and bias on the airwaves by calling-in or emailing your feedback to talk radio shows across British Columbia. Talk radio offers a great opportunity to share your opinions on the issues that matter to you.” BC Liberals
CALL or VISIT your local MLA
Contact Christy Clark Directly
Phone, Fax, Email -
Phone: (604) 775-1003
Fax: (604) 775-1026
For Immediate Release – November 14, 2012
Groups Call on BC to Deny Salmon Farm Lease Renewals
VANCOUVER – Groups working toward protection of wild Pacific salmon are urging the government of British Columbia not to renew sea-floor tenure leases of open-net salmon farms along BC’s coast.
The widely-supported appeal comes less than two weeks after the release of a report from the Cohen Commission—the federal inquiry into the decline of Fraser River sockeye salmon—which made it clear that salmon feedlots on sockeye migration routes are a serious threat to wild salmon stocks.
While much of the oversight for salmon aquaculture is managed by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), the BC government issues sea-floor tenures for salmon farms. A number of leases for operating farm sites are currently up for renewal, including eighteen in the Broughton Archipelago alone, for two Norwegian companies, Marine Harvest and Mainstream Canada. As a result, First Nations, environmentalists, scientists and wild salmon advocates are now calling on the province to deny renewal of these land tenures and stop these salmon farms in their tracks.
“Cohen states that if salmon farms have more than minimal risk of serious harm, they should “cease operations”,” says Dr. Alexandra Morton. “We are well past minimum risk.”
First Nations between Kingcome and Knight Inlets are being pressured to renew 18 salmon feedlot tenures throughout their territory.
“I know without a doubt that the price our wild salmon and everything that relies on them are paying isn’t worth it,” said Molina Dawson of the Dzawada’enuxw, who will be representing Kingcome Village families at the rally. “So, as long as the government and fish farm companies are actively endangering our fish they will not be getting any support from me.”
“The proponents of this industry, and unfortunately, decision-makers at the federal level, seem perfectly comfortable jeopardizing BC’s wild salmon” said Torrance Coste, Vancouver Island Campaigner with the Wilderness Committee.
“This is a chance for our provincial government to do the right thing for this coast, to step up for BC’s most important wild species,” Coste added.
The Cohen Commission recommended a freeze on increased production in the Discovery Islands, limiting salmon farm licences to a single year, relieving DFO of their mandate to promote salmon farms and he gave DFO 8 years to show that salmon farms are having less than minimal impact on wild salmon. However, recent legislation changes and cuts to federal fisheries staff have left DFO less equipped to follow through on these recommendations.
Friends of Clayoquot Sound Campaign Director Bonny Glambeck is alarmed that Mainstream Canada’s Plover Point fish farm near Tofino was approved for a 20-lease before Cohen’s findings were released.
“Wild salmon migrate all through Clayoquot Sound,” Glambeck explains. “Why did the provincial government give a 20 year lease to a new farm in the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve just weeks before Cohen’s report?”
Salmon advocates will join the members of the Musgamgw Dzawadaenuxw for a peaceful demonstration outside of Premier Christy Clark’s Vancouver constituency office in Point Grey at noon, to deliver a 11,000 signature petition and express their strong opposition to the renewal of salmon farm leases in BC.
WHERE: Premier Christy Clark Constituency Office
3615 W. 4th Avenue.
WHEN: 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
For more information, contact:
Torrance Coste, Vancouver Island Campaigner, Wilderness Committee – (250)516-9900
Anissa Reed, Salmon Are Sacred – (250)228-2872
Bonny Glambeck, Friends of Clayoquot Sound – (250)726-5100
Justice Bruce Cohen released his findings from the $26 Million Dollar Federal Inquiry looking into the collapse of the Fraser River Sockeye. One of the key elements of his findings was the potential for serious irreparable harm to the Fraser River Sockeye. He noted that the people of British Columbia will not tolerate any more than a minimal risk due to Salmon Farms. In the province of BC, Salmon Farms presently have leases in provincial which need to be renewed, we the people call on Christy Clark to evict destructive Open Net Salmon Farms from our precious waters.
At NOON on Wednesday November 14th, stand at Premier Clark’s Office to deliver a message about the future of our Wild Salmon and have her end Salmon Farm leases in provincial waters.
Monday October 29th, 2012 is the intended release date of the final report of the Cohen Commission, which is the federal inquiry created to investigate the collapse of the Fraser River Sockeye. After 3 extensions and much controversy comes the final report, which is a process that started in October 2010. While many people have lost faith in the ability for the levels of government to protect our fish, this report is the manifestation of the Canadian democratic system. As much as this is about fish, this is one test of multiple dynamics; Political, Economic, Social, Cultural and Spiritual, etc. To many, salmon is a lifeforce; it is a true gift, one that is likely more complex than any human intelligence can comprehend.
In the meantime, the Wild Salmon wait to see what all the fuss is about. I believe they know the absolute truth through every aquatic moment, drop by drop.
The fish were here first.
In my genuine belief, I desire a view of the river abundant with healthy wild fish. I have observed with my own eyes that Wild Salmon are a food supply for our common ground and can fuel our beautiful human imagination. Keep an eye on the fish and the rest will reveal itself in the time it needs to.