Dear Premier Horgan: Commit to wild salmon & UNDRIP, not fish farms
Urgent action needed, send a letter to Premier Horgan urging him not to renew the leases for fish farms in the Kwakwaka’wakw Nations’ territories. Your voice is needed to protect salmon and indigenous rights.
Please watch the video below, then copy, paste, and personalize the following letter to the provincial government in an email.
Lana Popham, MLA Saanich South, Minister of Agriculture
Claire Trevena, MLA for North Island, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.
Subject: Commit to wild salmon & UNDRIP, not fish farms
Dear Premier Horgan,
I am writing today out of concern for the future of wild salmon, coastal communities, and indigenous rights in British Columbia. As the landlord to three Norwegian companies operating without free, prior, and informed consent in the the collective territories of the Kwakwaka’wakw Nations (Broughton Archipelago), you will decide which runs of wild salmon are exposed to the pathogen effluent from this industry.
In June, many of the tenures of these fish farms are coming up for renewal, and your decision whether or not to renew the leases of these ocean feedlots will have huge consequences for Canada’s relationship with First Nations, wild salmon, indigenous rights and culture, coastal people, wildlife and critical ecosystems, the ecotourism industry, and the commercial, recreation, and sport fishing industries, BC’s reputation as an international destination, as well as for your party’s standing in the next election.
The BC NDP have stated a commitment to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), and removal of open-net fish farms from the Broughton Archipelago, which are operating without the consent of the resident indigenous communities. I fully expect that you uphold these commitments in full, and not compromise the health of the land and people to appease foreign industry.
The Mama̱liliḵa̱la, ʼNa̱mǥis, and the four tribes of the Musgamagw Dzawada̱ʼenux̱w in the Broughton Archipelago do not consent to the operation of fish farms within their respective territories. They have said no for over 30 years and they have lead peaceful occupations of fish farms which have been ongoing for over 165 days, showing continued resolve in the eviction of this industry from their waters. In the meantime, fish farms in the Broughton Archipelago continue their operations, their pollution, their spreading of harmful pathogens like piscine reovirus, the the ongoing transfer of lethal amounts of sea lice from farmed Atlantic salmon to fragile wild Pacific salmon populations, and the continued restocking of diseased farmed fish that will out-live Marine Harvest and Cermaq’s current licenses of occupation.
Premier Horgan, I ask out of concern for the future of wild salmon and coastal people, and our integrity as a just and fair society, that there be no renewal of the tenures for any fish farm in the Broughton Archipelago. I also ask that open net pen fish farms beyond the Broughton be removed from the ocean in order to safeguard wild salmon populations in British Columbia, before it is too late. This is not a new issue, we have learned how destructive fish farms are from all angles over the past 30 years. The science is in, the people have spoken, and now it is up to you to decide.
Washington State’s Hillary Franz has just cancelled two salmon farm tenures. People all across Canada and beyond are watching what is unfolding in BC very closely, and your decision on the upcoming renewal of fish farm tenures in BC will make or break the future of both wild salmon and reconciliation with First Nations.
Thank you for sending this letter. Please share widely on social media!