Fishing with Rod Discussion Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

Author Topic: B.C. report urges ecological approach to watershed management  (Read 3635 times)

troutbreath

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2908
  • I does Christy
B.C. report urges ecological approach to watershed management
« on: February 06, 2009, 09:45:08 AM »

B.C. report urges ecological approach to watershed management, limits on aquaculture to protect wild salmon
 
 
By Larry Pynn, Vancouver SunFebruary 5, 2009
 

 
Adams River salmon
Photograph by: Bill Keay, Vancouver Sun FilesWild salmon face “unprecedented threats” ranging from climate change to development and require the protection of a new agency dedicated to taking an ecological approach to all watershed activities that might threaten fish habitat, a report commissioned by the B.C. government recommended Thursday.

After four years of study, the B.C. Pacific Salmon Forum also concluded that farmed and wild salmon can co-exist, but recommended limits on salmon farming, including a cap on production in the Broughton Archipelago at current levels of 18,500 tonnes per year and managing farms to meet sea-lice limits on young wild salmon.

The forum also recommended a Science Secretariat to coordinate salmon research and urged the province to lead a pilot program to see if salmon farming can be economically viable using closed-containment systems.

Salmon farming in ocean net pens has been the subject of long-standing concerns related to transferring disease and lice to wild stocks, pollution, and the escape of non-native Atlantic salmon.

The forum recommended B.C. create a Water and Land Agency by 2012 to oversee the cumulative impact on salmon habitat of all resource activities, from traditional sectors such as logging and mining to modern threats such as run-of-the-river hydro projects. Government progress would be subject to independent, open audits.

Forum chair John Fraser, a former federal fisheries minister, said the practice of various government agencies considering developments in isolation has exacted a terrible toll on salmon stocks and cannot continue.

“Wild salmon are in serious trouble,” he said. “We, as a province and society need to make significant changes...if we want salmon to continue to have a future in B.C.”

Ron Cantelon, newly appointed minister of agriculture and lands, with responsibility for aquaculture, said in response he is glad the report recognizes the right of wild and farmed salmon to co-exist.

As for creating a Water and Land Agency, he said his “bias is to get results, not necessarily on reorganizing everybody.” He would first like to see if that’s possible through existing consultations, including with other levels of governments, first nations, industry, and stakeholder groups.

Clare Backman of Marine Harvest, representing about half of the B.C. salmon farm industry (80,000 tonnes in 2007), said the forum report confirms that wild salmon are affected by many factors and that aquaculture can be managed to protect wild stocks.

Alexandra Morton, the leading critic of salmon farms in the Broughton Archipelago, said she strongly endorses the forum’s recommendation for local involvement in decision-making. “Most of the last viable fisheries around the world are those locally managed by the people who need the fish.”

She opposes the suggested cap on salmon farming production, saying “the entire reason the forum was funded was because there are problems at the current levels.”

The report’s complete 16 recommendations can be viewed at www.pacificsalmonforum.ca.

lpynn@vancouversun.com

© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun
 
 

 
Adams River salmon
Photograph by: Bill Keay, Vancouver Sun Files
 
Logged
another SLICE of dirty fish perhaps?

chris gadsden

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13886
Re: B.C. report urges ecological approach to watershed management
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2009, 12:46:55 PM »

Of course gravel mining on rivers like the Coquitlam and the Fraser fall into this catagory too as stated below.

The forum recommended B.C. create a Water and Land Agency by 2012 to oversee the cumulative impact on salmon habitat of all resource activities, from traditional sectors such as logging and mining to modern threats such as run-of-the-river hydro projects. Government progress would be subject to independent, open audits.

Forum chair John Fraser, a former federal fisheries minister, said the practice of various government agencies considering developments in isolation has exacted a terrible toll on salmon stocks and cannot continue.