I sponsored parliamentary petition e-2776 because I am concerned about the impact of open-net salmon farms on wild salmon populations.
This petition calls on the government to request that the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Investment Board divest from all open-net pen aquaculture investment opportunities. The CPP Investment Board is invested in $200 million worth of foreign fish farm operations. The pensions of Canadians should not be funding practices that are harmful to wild salmon.
Wild salmon are iconic species, critical to the food chain, and fundamental to the sustenance and culture of coastal First Nations.
The government is not taking the protection of wild salmon seriously enough. We know that pollution, disease, and parasites from fish farms threaten wild salmon, but the government says it will only make a plan to move all open-net pen finfish aquaculture in BC to land-based closed containment systems by 2025.
The government also recently delayed a controversial decision beyond September 30th about whether to allow fish farms to remain in the Discovery Islands. This date was the deadline set by the Cohen Commission to cease salmon farm operations in the Discovery Islands, if those salmon farms were found to pose harm to migrating sockeye.
We don’t have the time for delayed action. Wild salmon populations are declining at alarming rates and they need more protection now.
In the winter I made a statement in the House of Commons about our urgent need to protect wild salmon and move to closed-containment farming systems. This summer I called on the government to take emergency action to save Pacific salmon. More recently I made a statement about the importance of protecting wild salmon for true reconciliation.
I encourage you to join me in calling for greater protections by signing and sharing petition e-2776 before it closes on Saturday, October 24th. Signing a parliamentary e-petition is a two step process. You must confirm your signature through the email you will receive.
The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) manages over $400 billion of Canadians' pension savings;
The CPPIB currently invests over $200 million in foreign open-net pen aquaculture for imported Atlantic salmon;
Open-net pen salmon farms contaminate wild salmon habitat with chemicals, parasites, viruses and diseases - all of which threaten the health of wild Pacific salmon runs;
Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) is a common virus, found in over 80% of farmed Atlantic salmon;
PRV can cause heart and skeletal muscle inflammation (HSMI), which is a deadly viral fish disease. PRV and HSMI both threaten the survival of wild salmon;
For years, Fisheries and Oceans Canada have been aware that both PRV and HSMI are detected in Atlantic open-net pen salmon farms in B.C.;
To protect their wild salmon populations, Washington state passed legislation banning PRV-infected farmed salmon in 2018; and
Divesting Canadians' pensions from PRV-infected open-net pen aquaculture operations is an important step in protecting wild salmon.
We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to request the CPPIB to divest from any open-net pen aquaculture investment opportunities, foreign-owned or otherwise.