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Proposed Pacific Aquaculture Regulations Online

CANADA - Over recent months, Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) has been developing the proposed Pacific Aquaculture Regulations under the Fisheries Act.

The proposed federal regulations have taken into account the existing provincial aquaculture regulations, as well as the feedback and written comments received by the department during consultations with First Nations, stakeholders and interested members of the public.

The proposed Pacific Aquaculture Regulations were pre-published in Part I of the Canada Gazette for a 60-day public comment period this week.

Following the comment period, the submissions will be reviewed and amendments will be made as necessary.

The proposed regulations will then be submitted for review and approval by the Governor in Council, before being published in final form in the Canada Gazette, Part II, with a view to ensuring that the new federal regulations will be in force prior to December, 2010.

The BC Salmon Farmers Association said it is ready to review the draft Department of Fisheries and Oceans regulations for the industry now that they have been released to the public.

"We're happy to see this draft come forward and are eager to look through it in detail," said Mary Ellen Walling, Executive Director for the BC Salmon Farmers Association.

"It's important that the strong regulations already in place are continued into the future."

In February 2009, the BC Supreme Court ruled that regulatory control of finfish aquaculture in the province should be transferred to the federal government. That transfer is expected to occur in December 2010 - and the proposed regulations are being circulated now.

Today, the draft of those regulations were posted to Canada Gazette and made public. All are welcome to provide comment over a 60-day period, and the association will be responding following a thorough review of the document.

"We believe that the aquaculture industry cannot succeed unless we use sustainable farming practices and protect our marine resources," said Walling. "A good set of regulations is important for supporting our high standard of operations."

the Fish Site Editor

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