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Salmon Runs at Risk by B.C. Aquaculture Plans

CANADA - Environmental groups say they are appalled the province is considering massive increases in farmed salmon production in farms along critical wild salmon migration routes -- the Broughton Archipelago and northern Strait of Georgia among them.

But the province denies that it's doing so.

"We are just astounded at the size of some of the increases. There are at least three farms in northern Georgia Strait that are looking at doubling or tripling their capacity," Ruby Berry of the Georgia Strait Alliance, told TheProvince news agency.

"We are just astounded at the size of some of the increases."
Ruby Berry of the Georgia Strait Alliance.

Catherine Stewart of the Living Oceans Society agreed, saying the increases put wild salmon runs at risk.

"An increase in production of this nature will place tremendous pressure on already imperiled wild salmon stocks and the marine ecosystem around these salmon farms," she told TheProvince.

According to the news agency, unlike applications for new farms, when environmental groups are among those consulted, there is no requirement to let anyone know when there is an application for an amendment, Berry said.

But Liz Bicknell, spokeswoman for the Agriculture and Lands Ministry, said only two applications for increased production have been approved, both last April, and decisions on other applications are not imminent.

Further Reading

- Go to our previous news item on this story by clicking here.