When you are a multi-billion dollar, foreign-owned industry continuously mired in controversy over your environmental record, you have but two options: you clean up your act, or you clean up your image. The latest public relations offensive from B.C. salmon farmers leaves little doubt that for them, image is everything.
My gut reaction to the first genetically modified animal produced for consumption was like many peoples'; a bit of disgust with whole lot of 'why'!?. Before I wrote this piece though, I wanted to be able to give you all the relevant information about the 'frankensalmon' so you can form your own opinion about it.
Alaskans emphasize they are not against resource extraction, provided there are adequate environmental and financial safeguards, but believe Canada's record -- most recently illustrated by the Mount Polley mine tailings dam collapse -- shows that B.C.'s regulations are not strong enough to protect downstream communities.
While the Skeena ecosystem has been largely pristine for many years, things may soon change as the area is pegged for rapid commercial and industrial expansion. A suite of major projects are proposed for the region, including liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities, mines, and oil and gas pipelines and the expansion of shipping associated with such projects.
In British Columbia, salmon are sacred. For centuries, they have nourished First Nations and settlers alike, and continue to sustain virtually all of the wildlife we cherish in B.C.: orcas, eagles, bears, seals and sea lions, wolves and even our forests. Wild salmon make life possible on the West Coast. So why are our federal and provincial governments trying to kill them? I do not speak of simple neglect. I mean actively working towards the destruction of wild salmon.
When I first visited Tofino in 2003, there were few restaurants besides the opulent Pointe. Now, the city is teeming with choice establishments. That community love for food explodes into euphoria on May 8. The two-week Feast Tofino festival features 17 events, several of which include visiting chefs from Vancouver.
When a tailings pond broke at the Mount Polley gold and copper mine in south-central B.C., spilling millions of cubic metres of waste into a salmon-bearing stream, B.C. Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett called it an "extremely rare" occurrence, the first in 40 years for mines operating here. He failed to mention the 46 "dangerous or unusual occurrences" that B.C's chief inspector of mines reported at tailings ponds in the province between 2000 and 2012, as well as breaches at non-operating mine sites.
Areas of Earth that have remained relatively free of industrial development have taken on a special significance. In Canada, they include awe-inspiring landscapes like the Sacred Headwaters in northwestern B.C. But the Sacred Headwaters is not protected under law. It remains at risk from a multitude of proposed mines, railways, transmission lines and other projects that will eviscerate the landscape if approved.
The health of fish is undoubted. A great source of lean protein, omega fatty acids and low in fat. But the problem today is that our fish supply is contaminated with mercury and PCB's and the oceans are being overfished. The following fish have been put into three groups. Those to avoid, those that are good to consume and those that can be eaten on an infrequent basis.
The press release had a pretty stark headline: "Haida Announce Termination of Russ George." George was the guy who persuaded the small impoverished indigenous community of Old Massett on Haida Gwaii to part with over $2.5-million. He did so under the pretense that dumping iron in the ocean to stimulate a plankton bloom would net lucrative profits in the carbon credit market. Losing the rogue geoengineer may be good for optics, but it is a meaningless step unless the Haida also jettison his junk visions to manipulate the oceans and climate.
Someone once said to me: "For ultimate good health, instead of focusing on what you should be eliminating from your daily diet, focus instead on consuming the foods that will increase your wellness." Recently, my husband and I got a "speed-dating" style opportunity to hear what she has to say about including 10 particular foods that will "rock your socks off."