Minister Gail Shea. (Photo Credit: gailshea.ca)
Funding boost for Pacific coast's fisheries conservation, research
Tuesday, May 26, 2015, 03:10 (GMT + 9)
Fisheries and Oceans Minister Gail Shea has announced investments from the Government totalling over CAD 57 million (USD 46.4 million) in science facilities, marine protection and Pacific salmon research.
Together, the Center for Aquaculture & Environmental Research in West Vancouver, the Institute of Ocean Sciences in Sidney and the Pacific Biological Station in Nanaimo will receive up to CAD 18 million (USD 14.6 million) for various upgrades and repairs, including improvements to the existing wharves and related infrastructure.
Minister Shea also highlighted the Government’s commitment to work with partners such as the Vancouver Aquarium and the Pacific Salmon Foundation on a more collaborative use of the West Vancouver Lab.
Canada currently has eight MPAs under the Oceans Act and the designation of an additional eight areas is in various stages of completion. Economic Action Plan 2014 provided CAD 37 million over five years for marine and coastal conservation under the National Conservation Plan. This funding will help establishing regulations for four new Marine Protected Areas, identifying three new candidate areas for analysis and stakeholder consultations, and developing and implementing management frameworks for Oceans Act Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
Economic Action Plan 2015 provides CAD 2 million (USD 1.6 million) to the Pacific Salmon Foundation in support of the Salish Sea Marine Survival Project; employing the most up-to-date research techniques to investigate the factors affecting the survival of juvenile salmon and steelhead in the Salish Sea off the south coast of British Columbia.
“I am pleased to announce that under our Government’s National Conservation Plan, we are working to establish four new marine protected areas, identify three additional areas as candidates for protection and develop the management frameworks for existing marine protected areas. Marine protected areas contribute to the improved health, integrity and productivity of our marine ecosystems,” said Minister Shea.