Salmon farm decision did not come out of the blue


Dear North Vancouver Island Mayors,

I am writing to you after reading the widely published article announcing that you feel “disposable and discarded” after a few salmon farms were told their federal licences would not be renewed beyond 18 months in the territories of seven First Nations.

You might want to consider the optics of this. You have not been “discarded” by the people of the communities that elected you to work for them. Perhaps you are now disposable to an industry that has failed to keep up with the times, but you are not disposable to us.

This decision did not come out of the blue. You must know that. The federal government made their intention to move salmon farms into closed containment known over a year ago.

You do realize that closed containment is taking off globally, right? That some of the farmers using the Discovery Islands are investing in closed containment elsewhere. You must know that net pen-reared farm salmon is the lowest grade salmon available on the market – neither wild nor sustainable – and that is all B.C. is going to be left with? It has got to be apparent given the recent past that making our communities dependant on the whims of international companies is why boom and bust hurts us over and over.

When you tie your fate to that of Mowi, Cermaq and Grieg, such as you have done in this recent media, you hurt the communities that you pledged to serve. We are more than fish farmers, but we are also ready to embrace an aquaculture industry that takes responsibility for its impact by containing its waste. Why would this be the only industry that does not have to become environmentally responsible?

The salmon farming industry is accused of destroying one of the long-standing pillars of the North Island economy – wild salmon – and you are not curious why people are saying this?

When you allow the industry to speak for you, to say that you have been discarded because they did not get their way, you make it look like you are on a very short leash. I hope you will reconsider being used in this way and become leaders to diversify our economy and make us resilient.

Alexandra Morton

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

New literacy framework will allow teachers to assess whether students have the necessary skills to become strong readers, and intervene early if they need help. Photo by Marissa Tiel/Campbell River Mirror
Campbell River school board creating new literacy framework

New plan aims to reverse declining literacy in SD72

Duncan Hurd says his fence has been smashed multiple times in the past month. Photo courtesy Duncan Hurd
Vandalism escalating in Campbell River neighbourhood, resident says

Neighbours want to see vandals ‘identified’

Kandi Kehler has just over two weeks left in her rental, but doesn’t know where she is going to go next. Photo by Marc Kitteringham / Campbell River Mirror
12 days left: Campbell River family at end of lease with nowhere else to go

Biggest fear coming to life for Campbell River mom

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Canadians who got AstraZeneca shot can now see ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

New research suggests wolves can be steered away from the endangered caribou herds they prey on by making the man-made trails they use to hunt harder to move along. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Culling cutlines, not B.C. wolves, key to preserving caribou herds: researcher

The government has turned to killing hundreds of wolves in an effort to keep caribou around

Gary Abbott (left) and Louis De Jaeger were two of the organizers for the 2014 Spirit of the People Powwow in Chilliwack. Monday, June 21, 2021 is Indigenous Peoples Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of June 20 to 26

Indigenous Peoples Day, Take Your Dog to Work Day, Onion Rings Day all coming up this week

Gwen Spencer Hethey with her uncle and mentor Major Frederick Richardson. (Courtesy of Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame)
‘She was a killer’: The B.C. woman who pioneered female sharpshooting

Gwen Spencer Hethey made military men ‘look like turkeys’ says her son

Central Okanagan Grade 12 grads are set to get $500 each after a more than $1 million donation from a Kelowna couple. (File photo)
B.C. couple donating $500 to every Grade 12 student in the Okanagan

Anonymous donors identified as Kelowna entrepreneurs Lance and Tammy Torgerson

Most Read