VANCOUVER, BC, Coast Salish Territories – West Coast Environmental Law Association issued the following statement in response to today’s release of a report from the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans, regarding its review of changes made in 2012 to the Fisheries Act:
"No habitat, no fish. That was the motto on pencils and buttons that the Department of Fisheries and Oceans used to distribute. We agree. Today's report from the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans calls for a return to a strong habitat protection law that applies to all fish in Canada, and recommends many changes to bring this law into the 21st century. West Coast applauds the Committee's work, and looks forward to working with the government and all stakeholders to ensure that Canadian fish and ecosystems are preserved for us and for future generations."
“We are pleased that the Committee has listened – to First Nations, to conservation and community groups, to scientists and concerned citizens across the country – and has recommended reinstating the Fisheries Act’s key prohibition on habitat alteration, disruption and disturbance. The report's top recommendations underscore the importance of habitat for healthy fisheries, and we urge the government to act swiftly on these and all the recommendations in this important report to restore lost safeguards and modernize this critical law.”
For more information, please contact:
Linda Nowlan | Staff Counsel, West Coast Environmental Law