Clio Channel salmon farm applications the tip of the iceberg
Last month we sent out an Action Alert urging you to voice your opposition to Grieg Seafood’s proposed salmon farm tenure applications in Clio Channel. Over 1,800 of you were moved to act and we thank each and every one of you for your support. In addition to your written submissions, there was a strong contingent of North Island residents—many from Sointula—who showed up in person at the open-house event held by Grieg in Port McNeill. Living Oceans also followed up with B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, as well as Transport Canada by submitting eight pages of objections during the comment period.
Unfortunately, Grieg’s application is just the tip of the iceberg. There are six new salmon farm tenure/licence applications and five additional applications for tenure/licence expansion. The salmon farming industry wants to expand their operations by more than 43 percent by 2020. And it looks like Fisheries and Oceans Canada is prepared to let them move ahead with their plans in spite of the recommendations of the Cohen Commission.
As a result of changes made in the 2012 omnibus budget bill, aquaculture operations no longer need to complete a full environmental impact assessment when they want to expand. Also, public opportunities for comment or input into the tenure and licensing process have been limited. Despite this reality, we’re committed to keeping you informed of what’s happening on the coast. We’re tracking the new applications, submitting comments and objections where appropriate, ensuring that proposed new tenures or tenure expansions are aligned with regional marine plans. Keep an eye on your inbox or follow us on Facebook and Twitter to be sure you get all of our updates.