VANCOUVER – Ecojustice lawyer, Kegan Pepper-Smith made the following statement about the Cohen Commission’s recommendation for the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans to close open-net salmon farming in the Discovery Islands by September 30, 2020:
“Prime Minister Trudeau made a commitment to Canadians that his government would implement all 75 of the Cohen Commission recommendations to aid in the recovery of wild salmon in British Columbia. The time has come to follow through with an important deadline and remove fish farms from the Discovery Islands, but it’s radio silence from his Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.
“It is unacceptable to continue to allow open-net fish farms to operate in the Discover Islands — a major migratory path for wild salmon — when the science has confirmed that they are a breeding ground for contagious diseases, viruses, and parasites that cannot be contained.
“The fate of wild salmon in British Columbia is in the Minister’s hands. If the Minister lives up to her government’s promises and implements the Cohen Commission’s recommendations in full, including closing fish farms in the Discovery Islands, she will neutralize significant threats to wild salmon and give them a chance at survival.
“Fraser River sockeye salmon returns are the lowest they have been since 1893. Half-measures and continued silence from the Minister on this issue will only ensure a future without wild salmon in B.C.”
Venetia Jones, communications specialist | Ecojustice
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