Salmon Enhancement Program WAS in JEOPARDY

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The World-Famous Sockeye Salmon program was in jeopardy of having cutbacks on the Salmon Enhancement Program (SEP) but thanks to a host of people and organizations the program was saved. The government listened to the many letter of supports for the program and social media posts; they took heed in cutting back any funds that supported this well needed program.
 

It started with this letter from our Society …

 

to various politicians and connected people. Further down in this article you will read the letter that we received back from our provinces MP declaring that the cutbacks were reversed.

 
 
The Adams River Salmon Society joins hundreds of other groups and thousands of Canadians who are outraged at the recent announcements regarding the cuts to the Salmon Enhancement Program.
These cuts deeply impact the future of wild salmon in the Pacific region and undermine years of efforts by Department of Fisheries and Oceans and thousands of volunteers and school children. The Adams River Salmon Society hosts the Salute to the Sockeye every four years (next one in 2018) and provides education, conservation and advocacy to preserve and nurture this incredibly important resource. The Salmon Enhancement Program (SEP) is absolutely critical to the continued health of our World-Famous Sockeye Salmon Run and the cutbacks will have potentially disastrous consequences for generations.
We strongly urge to reconsider the cutbacks which affect use economically, environmentally, emotionally and politically.
  •  Dear Adams River Salmon Society,

So much has happened since my last salmon e-news update.  I’ve been busy in Parliament and at the Fisheries and Oceans Standing Committee working to #SaveWildSalmon from government cuts, open net salmon farms, habitat loss and climate change.

As you may be aware, we are celebrating a significant victory.  Following weeks of pressure from the NDP and grassroots salmon advocates, the Liberal government announced a reversal of their decision to cut an important BC salmon-education program and habitat restoration program. See below to find out more!

I hope you find this newsletter helpful.  Please share it in your networks and if you know someone who would like to subscribe to it they can do so by visiting: http://findonnelly.ndp.ca/protect-west-coast-wild-salmon

Sincerely,

Fin Donnelly
Member of Parliament Port Moody-Coquitlam (Anmore & Belcarra)
NDP Fisheries, Oceans & Canadian Coast Guard critic
Vice Chair, Fisheries & Oceans Standing Committee
Co-Chair, Oceans Caucus

 

Big Win: Reversing Cuts to Wild Salmon Programs

Just over two weeks ago on May 26th the government  quietly announced their decision to dismantle the Resource Restoration Unit, cut the Salmon Enhancement Program’s “Salmonids in the Classroom,” initiative and remove steelhead and cutthroat trout from the hatchery programs.

This decision demonstrated a critical misunderstanding of DFO’s mandate and responsibility to protect wild salmon for future generations. As a result, hundreds of watershed restoration projects across the province were in jeopardy along with the hard work of countless volunteers and 35,000 students a year would not be given the hands on transformational opportunity to learn about the salmon life cycle.

The grassroots response to these short sighted cuts was incredible. MP offices across the country received hundreds of responses from teachers, students, parents, volunteers and NGOs calling for these vital programs to be restored. I took their fight to House of Commons and Committee where I was able to ask the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans three times to reverse the cuts. In a stunning victory for wild salmon the government backed down to public pressure and restored funding to these vital programs.

Thank you to everyone who contacted their MP and the Minister to pressure the Liberal government to reverse their decision.

Threat of Open Net Salmon Farms Confirmed by DFO Scientists 

In March, a team of scientists from the Pacific Salmon Foundation and Fisheries and Oceans Canada confirmed what we already knew to be true.  Open net salmon farms are a risk to vulnerable BC wild salmon due the presence of diseases like heart and skeletal muscle inflammation (HSMI). I was able to raise this issue in the House of Commons, demanding answers from the Minister in Question Period. You can watch our exchange here.

Restoring the Fisheries Act

Over the past six months, I have pushed the government to restore the lost habitat protections in the Fisheries Act. Each time, the government tried to reassure wild salmon advocates by saying the promised changes were coming. When the Government controlled committee submitted their Fisheries Act recommendations, I was again disappointed by what was omitted. So, I submitted a dissenting opinion calling on the government to keep their promise and protect wild salmon. You can read my report here.

Let’s continue to work together to #SaveWildSalmon and the people who depend on them.

Sincerely,

Fin Donnelly
Member of Parliament Port Moody-Coquitlam (Anmore & Belcarra)
NDP Fisheries, Oceans & Canadian Coast Guard critic
Vice Chair, Fisheries & Oceans Standing Committee
Co-Chair, Oceans Caucus