EP 586 | AIRED 04/25/2022
DFO Cover Up True Scale of Virus Killing B.C. Salmon (B.C. used to Harvest up to 40,000,000 Salmon)
Apr 25th, 2022 This week we report on the dying Pacific Salmon populations in British Columbia Canada, as the political chaos within Canadian fisheries management over open-net Farmed Atlantic Salmon and Wild Pacific Salmon make international headlines.
--- In 2021, only 660,000 Pacific Salmon were commercially harvested in B.C. waters compared to over 40 million Salmon in 1991 - which is over 30 years ago, when DFO was first alerted that Wild Salmon in B.C. might be in trouble.
The DFO, (now known as Fisheries and Oceans Canada), is the arm of the Canadian Government that manages all fisheries across Canada.
Recent publications from The Globe and Mail and The Guardian reported that DFO suppressed a federal Salmon study that showed a virus spreading at Salmon Farms in B.C. was infecting both farmed and wild Salmon.
DFO stated that they could not release the report, under the Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program, because the authors disagreed about the conclusions.
Just this past March, (after 10 years of this report not being allowed to be published), the federal Information Commissioner of Canada ordered the DFO to release the information that found pathogens among open-net fish farms in the province - ruling that suppressing publication of the document was not justified.
Take a look at this exclusive clip of what Alexandra Morton, (a Canadian Biologist who has studied Pacific Salmon for the last thirty years) had to say about recent headlines relating to DFO's suppression of the virus research.
It shouldn't come as a surprise to hear governments suppressing information from the public, however seeing proof of it happening, can still actually seat you back.
In an internal DFO email obtained here, you can see a DFO Regional Aquaculture Manager writing in response to an infectious disease report, "can't we tell the public it was mouth rot and not something scary and infectious to wild fish?". See Email Here
In another internal DFO email obtained here shows DFO Senior Research Scientist in Salmon Genetics Dr. Miller-Saunders summarized the results of the work she had been communicating to DFO aquaculture staff for over a year on mouth rot and the survival populations impacts of Wild Salmon. See Email Here
She was subsequently asked by a DFO Science Director to summarize it further in the form of a briefing note for a Ministerial briefing where in the course of a day, "serious and realistic concerns" were changed to "unpublished results suggest link" and "paper in progress" by senior DFO aquaculture management.
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--- On June 30th, 2022, seventy-nine B.C. Salmon Farm licenses are set to expire and the DFO, (ultimately led by newly appointed Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray), has to decide whether those licenses will be re-issued.
Joyce Murray has a mandate from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to phase out open-net industrial fish farms off the coast of British Columbia by 2025.
This final decision on whether to re-issue these licenses rest on Murray as she works with Indigenous communities that are both "for removing" open-pen fish farms (to save Wild Salmon), and "for keeping" open-net fish farms (to save jobs and the economies of coastal communities) - also while appeasing Farmed Salmon companies and Commercial Fishermen in B.C. - also while utilizing scientific research that is officially presented to her (from her own department), on how to save Wild Salmon Populations in B.C.
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