Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by canoecat, Mar 19, 2009.
Join the march
An excerpt from a letter in the Courier Islander today:
An older article I had not seen here
Another perspective, from First Nations here
Globe & Mail story on report by The Salmon & Trout Association of the United Kingdom
Gordon Moore thinks open cage aquaculture is a bad idea
Vivian Krause has stated that several US foundations have funded environmentalists in a campaign against fish farms, in an article in the Courier Islander. I tracked down the names of 3 foundations here.
Let's look at these people/foundations:
Gordon Moore was a co-founder of Intel. He coined Moore's law. Wiki says his net worth was 3.7 billion in 2008. He has donated $800 million dollars to Caltech. Wikipedia
David Packard was a co-founder of Hewlett-Packard, was presented the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Ronald Reagan, and left $4 billion to the Packard Foundation. Packard gave $68 million to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Wikipedia
The Pew Charitable Trusts were founded by adult children of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph N. Pew. Wikipedia
Let's assume Vivian Krause is correct, that Gordon Moore gave lots of money to environmentalists in an effort to stop open cage fish farms. Would Gordon Moore receive any financial benefit from the Alaskan fish ranchers ... I doubt it, he's already rich. Would Gordon Moore be trying to scuttle aquaculture for ego reasons ... I doubt it, he's already famous. Did I mention that he is brilliant? When a really smart guy says that something is a bad idea ... it's probably a bad idea.
My take on this story:
A brilliant, rich, and famous guy thinks open cage aquaculture is a bad idea.
Received this in my e-mail today from Ms. Morton. Good stuff.
Department of Justice lays charges against fish farm company
Unlawful by-catch of wild salmon by Norwegian fish farm company
(April 20, 2010, Port Hardy) Today, Todd Gerhart of the Department of Justice, stayed charges laid by biologist Alexandra Morton against Marine Harvest, the largest Norwegian fish farm company in the world, for unlawful possession of wild salmon. In a landmark initiative Gerhart advised the Court that on April 16, 2010, DOJ filed a new indictment against Marine Harvest, including the original charges laid by Alexandra Morton as well as new charges for unlawful possession of herring reported in October 2009. Mr. Gerhart will be the prosecutor.
Morton and her lawyer Jeffery Jones are relieved. “It is my strong opinion,” says Mr. Jones, a former Crown Prosecutor for DOJ, “that this industry was given access to the BC coast and appears to have been conducting itself as if it were above the law. Today’s decision by Mr. Gerhart and the Department of Justice confirms that no corporation is above the law. This is why private prosecutions are important democratic safeguards. Ms. Morton’s prosecution has triggered enforcement action by DOJ. I am extremely pleased by Mr. Gerhart’s decision.”
In June of 2009, young wild salmon were observed falling from a load of farm salmon being off-loaded from Marine Harvest’s vessel Orca Warrior. Some of these fish were collected and Marine Harvest admitted in the newspaper to catching the wild salmon. “By-catch” is fish caught without a licence in the process of fishing for other species. By-catch is strictly controlled in all other fisheries and in some cases causes entire fisheries to be shut down.
“For decades we have heard reports of wild fish trapped in fish farms, eaten by the farm fish and destroyed during harvest,” says biologist Alexandra Morton, “but when DFO was informed of these offenses they would not, or could not, lay a charge. Canada cannot manage wild fish like this. You can’t regulate commercial and sport fishermen and then allow another group unlimited access to the same resource. BC will lose its wild fish.”
In 1993, the Pacific Fishery Regulations exempted salmon farms from virtually all fishing regulations. Unlike commercial fishermen, salmon farmers can use bright lights known to attract wild fish. The oily food pellets they use also attract fish and wildlife. Commercial fishermen are required to pay for observers and cameras on their vessels that record by-catch, so that fishing can be halted to preserve non-targeted stocks. No such enforcement has been applied to salmon farmers, despite regular reports of black cod, rock cod, herring, lingcod, wild salmon, Pollock, capelin and other species in the pens, in stomachs of the farmed fish and destroyed at harvest time….Until now.
“This is a ray of hope that we can work through the issue of Norwegian salmon farming in BC waters. I am thankful to hand this over to the Department of Justice. Aquaculture is not the problem. The problem is the reckless way government sited it, managed it and gave it priority over the public fisheries. I call on government to protect the families now dependant on this industry as it undergoes the long overdue scrutiny of the courts, the judicial inquiry and public opinion.“
Alexandra Morton 250-974-7086
Pretty damning. We're talking $284 million worth of business for Alaska Salmon fisheries as a result of the campaign against fish farms.
Just call me cynical.
the Get Out Migration
This is perhaps of broader interest, but in the same vein - the recent Cochabama Declaration:
Get Out Migration in Victoria
Here's a shot of the Migration at the legislature
And here's a larger version:
http://www.salmonaresacred.org/sites/default/files/userfiles/image/thousands and thousands.jpg
Government memos reveal fish farmers pressured government to keep sea lice drugs secret, six years before biologist Alexandra Morton made it public.
memo image here
Do I trust the government? NO!
Do I trust the fish farm corporations? NO!
Is Clare Backman of Marine Harvest a liar?
On page A10 of the Courier Islander Wed June 2, 2010, is a letter from Clare Backman which contains the sentence "Salmon farms are anything but secret about their businesses".
Yet Order F10-06 of the Office of the Information & Privacy Commisioner for British Columbia contains this clause on page 24:
 Marine Harvest submits there are "no regulations or laws" which require it to release the information it gives to Ministry veterinarians or designates during on-site visits. It states that release of the requested information would result in (Marine Harvest) no longer supplying the requested information.
Order F10-06 states that Marine Harvest wants to keep the health status of their fish a secret. Clare says they have no secrets. Who's the liar, Clare Backman or Michael McEnvoy? My money's on Clare.
Clare Backman is Director of Sustainability for Marine Harvest Canada.
Michael Envoy authored Order F10-06 and is an adjudicator with the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for BC.
If Marine Harvest is lying now, then it is not unreasonable to suspect that they have been lying all along.
More BS from Marine Harvest
More BS from Marine Harvest
On the Marine Harvest website:
Let's look at Mark Sheppard's testimony:
Since 97% of the farmed salmon survive, there is no threat to wild salmon? What kind of BS logic is this? Farmed salmon receive vaccines in their food. Farmed salmon are large enough to survive sea lice. Don't these clowns know any science? Or are they just spin-doctors, trying to fool the average joe, just like the cigarette companies did for years?
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columb ... :b34775336
Corporations equated to psychopaths
For those misguided persons who think Norwegian corporations care about wild fish, consider the following:
Watch The Corporation (2003) on youtube
Read an article with the film-makers from The Tyee
Fish-farm sea lice more widespr
Fish-farm sea lice more widespread than thought
more evidence of the evils of fish farming (scientific data in a Canadian peer-reviewed journal)
a summary: CBC
another summary: The Tyee
the journal: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
the publication: Evidence of farm-induced parasite infestations on wild juvenile salmon in multiple regions of coastal British Columbia, Canada
for info on the Georgia Strait gauntlet, see
http://hosted.verticalresponse.com/7174 ... 66c9a0128/
Interesting article in the National Post today about sea lice and the David Suzuki Foundation:
http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/0 ... -sea-lice/
Why did the David Suzuki Foundation remove Web pages on the dangers of farmed salmon?
By Vivian Krause
For more than a decade, the David Suzuki Foundation has run an aggressive campaign against farmed salmon. “It’s poison!” David Suzuki told a conference in Toronto. “Phone your local hospitals and find out if farmed salmon is served to patients,” said a brochure from his foundation.
The Suzuki Foundation distributed a brochure titled Why You Shouldn’t Eat Farmed Salmon. It features David Suzuki’s photo prominently on the front page. Since last February, however, that brochure — along with 20 press releases and Web pages about salmon farming — have been quietly removed from the foundation’s website. Gone.
In a recent op-ed in The Vancouver Sun, moreover, the foundation’s marine expert, Jay Ritchlin, wrote: “Salmon farming has long been a controversial issue, especially in British Columbia. But is the tide starting to turn? We think it is.” After all these years of anti-salmon-farm activism, the David Suzuki Foundation appears to be softening its stance. But why?
Internet archives show that last February, 16 press releases and Web pages about salmon farming were removed merely hours after I put on my blog a detailed letter to David Suzuki in which I asked questions about the funding and scientific weakness of the Suzuki Foundation’s position.
Two claims have been at the heart of the campaign against farmed salmon. One is that farmed-salmon consumption should be limited because of high levels of contaminants such as PCBs. Mr. Ritchlin now says the levels of contaminants “have been reduced.” Farmed salmon, once “poison,” is apparently not so poisonous any more.
What Mr. Ritchlin didn’t mention is that contaminant levels in farmed salmon were never high to begin with. But that’s another story.
My focus here is on the other Suzuki claim, that sea lice from salmon farms pose a serious threat to wild salmon. Both claims stem from studies published in the prestigious journal Science and in both cases the research has been harshly criticized and refuted within the scientific community.
Even before sea lice research began, the David Suzuki Foundation claimed that sea lice from salmon farms had decimated wild pink salmon, leading to an “ecological disaster.”
One of the biggest problems with the alarm over sea lice is that it is at odds with the excellent returns of wild salmon in recent years. In 2000, despite 13 years of salmon farming in the vicinity, the return of wild pink salmon in the Broughton Archipelago was the highest on record since the 1950s. The Broughton is ground zero in B.C.’s salmon-farming controversy. In 2009, in the very same area where extinction due to sea lice was predicted, wild pink salmon returns were so good that commercial fishing took place. In 2010, the return of Fraser sockeye was the best in nearly 100 years.
Sea lice research, partially funded and publicized by the David Suzuki Foundation, was done at the Centre for Mathematical Biology (CMB) at the University of Alberta. The lead researcher was Dr. Martin Krkosek, a graduate student. His supervisor was Dr. Mark Lewis. According to Dr. Krkosek, more than 500 news items reported the alarming conclusions of the CMB’s sea lice research.
The alleged danger of “farm-origin” sea lice is the basis of “Ingredients for Extinction,” the tag line of a boycott campaign by the David Suzuki Foundation and other environmental groups. This campaign sent more than 30,000 faxes to tell the CEO of Safeway to stop selling farmed salmon.
The David Suzuki Foundation has described its sea lice research as undeniable, compelling, irrefutable and proof. If the sea lice research from the Suzuki Foundation actually shows what the foundation claims, I would agree that salmon farms should be closed. But as I have explained in a series of detailed letters that I have sent to David Suzuki over the past four years, my opinion is that his sea lice research does not show what the foundation says it does.
The David Suzuki Foundation reported, “up to 95% of wild juvenile pink and chum salmon are dying from sea lice.” A huge number. But mortality in the wild was never measured and reported. Never. Hypothetical mortality estimates were computer-generated at that great salmon think-tank, the Centre for Mathematical Biology at the University of Alberta. The published mortality prediction was actually estimated at between 9% and 95%. The David Suzuki Foundation selectively highlighted the prediction of up to 95% mortality, but downplayed the fact that the study suggested that mortality could be as low as 9% or even lower.
Sea lice are found on many species of wild ﬁsh, including herring. A method to trace the origin of sea lice is under development but currently does not exist, so it is methodologically impossible to distinguish between sea lice that originate from a fish farm and those that come from other wild fish. It follows that claims about “farm-origin” sea lice are flagrantly unsubstantiatable.
Back in 2007, thanks to Google, I unexpectedly found a University of Alberta document that reported that the sea lice researchers at the Centre for Mathematical Biology had “research partnerships” with a number of organizations which included SeaWeb, a U.S. environmental organization based in Maryland. This partnership was not mentioned in scientific publications.
SeaWeb gets money from a variety of interesting sources. Since 2000, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, based in California, has funded SeaWeb as part of its marine fisheries program. This program has a focus on “the U.S. Arctic,” which presumably is Alaska. U.S. tax returns show that Packard has paid SeaWeb $23-million since 2000. That included $9-million for a marketing strategy called Seafood Choices and $6-million for Communication Partnership for Science and the Sea (COMPASS), a program that helped publicize the CMB’s Canadian sea lice research around the world.
At the same time that SeaWeb was funded to co-ordinate Seafood Choices, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation funded SeaWeb to co-ordinate an “anti-farming campaign” with “science messages” and “earned media.” The purpose of this campaign was “to shift consumer and retailer demand away from farmed salmon,” U.S. tax returns say.
When studies on both contaminants and sea lice were published in Science, the editor-in-chief was Dr. Donald Kennedy, a trustee of the Packard Foundation. The current editor, Dr. Bruce Alberts, is a trustee of the Moore Foundation.
The University of Alberta scientists reported that their sea lice research was funded by Ottawa’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the David Suzuki Foundation and other sources. What the sea lice scientists didn’t mention is that some of the funding from the David Suzuki Foundation originated from the Moore Foundation, the same foundation that paid SeaWeb for the “anti-farming campaign” with “science messages” and “earned media.” The Moore Foundation, in an email to me, has said that it doesn’t know precisely how much of a $450,000 grant to the David Suzuki Foundation was re-granted to the CMB for its sea lice research, but that this amount was “less than $100,000.”
Given that for more than 10 years, the David Suzuki Foundation has played a leading role in fostering the opinion that sea lice from salmon farms are a serious threat to wild salmon, it is not good enough for the foundation to simply and quietly remove the press releases that started the whole sea lice controversy in the first place.
My hope is that David Suzuki is big enough to admit that contrary to his foundation’s claims that were broadcast far and wide, its sea lice research never did show that sea lice originating from salmon farms cause high levels of mortality among juvenile salmon in the wild.
Vivian Krause is a Vancouver researcher and writer. Her blog is
Here's a graph showing that fish farms reduce their numbers of sea lice during the wild salmon out migration period. Fewer sea lice at the farms -> fewer sea lice on the smolts -> larger returns.
Marine Harvest graph
More likely its eutrophication due to algae blooms fed by all the fecal matter than from sea lice.
Don't know if anyone is following the Cohen Commission Hearings but it's pretty interesting. If you haven't already done so, take a look at Alexandra's blog for her daily updates:
Separate names with a comma.