Eastern Shore Group Rolls Out Anti-Salmon Feedlot Campaign on Metro Buses
Monday, January 28th 2013 3:23:05pm
Halifax, NS - For the next two months, seven metro bus lines will carry a message from residents of the Eastern Shore that says “Save Our Coastal Waters and Economy. Tell Premier Dexter to Stop Open Pen Fish Farming,” along with directions to two websites, NSapes.ca and salmonwars.com.
The campaign is designed to educate metro residents about the risks of current open pen salmon farming practices in the province.
The campaign was initiated by the Association for the Preservation of the Eastern Shore (APES), a group opposed to open pen salmon farms. “This outreach to metro was paid for by donations from hundreds of local citizens concerned about plans to set up salmon feedlots in their bays, which are in HRM,” said Marike Finlay, President of APES. “We’ve decided it is time to take this campaign to the city streets.”
“As of today, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has given the green light to salmon feedlot operators in the Atlantic provinces to process diseased salmon for human consumption,” Dr. Finlay continued. “This can’t be good for anyone. Who is going to eat this fish? Where is it being marketed?”
“Diseases like ISA also threaten other commercially viable fish species, like herring,” adds Dr. Elisabeth Bigras, M.D. “It’s time for Premier Dexter to listen to the citizens of Nova Scotia and call a halt to open pen salmon feedlots in this province. We don’t want them or their risky products. The province needs to stop imposing them on us.”
Tourism operator and campground owner, Brian Murphy agrees. “More than 90% of the residents of Shoal Bay and Spry Harbour”--where two proposed salmon feedlots are supposed to go--“signed a petition banning open pen salmon feedlots. We don’t want them! Our kids swim in these waters. Last summer, I had between three and four thousand visitors to my campground. Those salmon pens are supposed to go right in front of my business, right in the channel! It’s outrageous.”
“Eastern Shore inshore lobster fishermen also stand to lose their livelihoods,” warns Vice-President of APES, Bill Williams. “Copper in the feed and in anti-foulants used on the pens is lethal to lobster larvae. So are the pesticides used to kill sea lice. And studies in Port Mouton and Shelburne Harbour have shown that huge quantities of fish excrement lead to high sulphide levels that destroy habitat and repel lobsters and other wild fish and fauna. We have already shown that Snow Island Salmon’s Owl’s Head site has tested with dangerously high sulphide levels, tests that were ignored or fudged by the industry and government in order to justify restocking the site.”
According to the APES website there are 10 reasons why Premier Dexter should call a halt to open pen farmed salmon in Nova Scotia:
1. Open pen salmon isn’t good for you.
2. Open pen salmon costs taxpayers millions of dollars in subsidies and “crop failure” payments while threatening or destroying other, more sustainable existing industries.
3. Open pen fish farms pollute our coastal waters and beaches with tons of untreated waste.
4. Open pen fish farms aren’t good for lobsters, sea birds and other sea life.
5. Open pen salmon farms deplete wild fish populations and destroy viable direct food sources.
6. Open pen salmon farms easily become intensive breeding grounds for ISA and other serious diseases.
7. Open pen salmon farms are economically unsustainable.
8. Open pen salmon threaten the health and genetic vigour of wild salmon.
9. Open pen fish farm licenses are granted in undemocratic ways, and privilege large national and international companies over citizens’ rights.
10. Land-based closed-containment salmon farms are the way of the future.
Links to other items mentioned in this story:
Marike Finlay, President Association for the Preservation of the Eastern Shore