Tuesday, July 23, 2013

NDP MP Nathan Cullen adds his voice to Skeena fishery concerns

The MP for Skeena-Bulkley Valley, spoke out on the state of the North Coast Fishery yesterday, urging the Federal Government and Pacific Salmon Commission to take action to protect Canadian Fishermen and Canadian Fish stocks in a troubled salmon season.

Nathan Cullen, echoed concerns raised last week by a coalition of salmon conservation groups, suggesting that fishing to the north of the A-B line by Southeast Alaska fishermen, may be contributing to this season's anticipated low returns to the Skeena water system.

As we outlined on the blog last week, the coalition raised a red flag over fishing practices in Alaska, which they suggest is resulting in too many of the Canadian bound salmon  being caught by the Alaskans, before the fish can return to the Skeena.

The MP has called on the Federal Government to not only take action on this crisis, but to spend more money on actual science to try and better understand why the return numbers have dropped to the low levels anticipated for this summer's run.

He is looking for better monitoring in the future of the runs, in order  to determine if the Alaskan's taking a larger haul, is the cause of the latest Skeena troubles.

Alaska officials say that they have not heard any official complaints about fishing practices in Southeast Alaska and advise that they have no plans to change their fishing plan over the next six weeks of the Southeast Alaska salmon season.

Mr. Cullen was recently in Anchorage, Alaska attending a Pacific Northwest regional conference on the economy, energy and the environment, though there is no indication that the salmon troubles were discussed at that conference.

The MP has also been touring various parts of the riding over the last few days, most recently having spent time on Haida Gwaii and the Central Coast.

CFTK-- MP Nathan Cullen Calls on Feds to Aid in Skeena Sockeye Crisis
CFTK-- Cullen Skeena Sockeye (video)
CFTK-- Skeena Sockeye returns (video)

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