CANADA - The Government of Canada is providing C$34.2 million over five years to upgrade and renew salmon hatcheries and spawning channels operated by the federal government under the Salmonid Enhancement Program (SEP).
This funding includes C$13.8 million to refurbish crucial water supply and delivery systems at all 16 major salmon hatcheries and many spawning channels and $20.4 million to modernize and refurbish aging infrastructure at Bella Coola's Snootli Creek Hatchery, which serves the B.C. Central Coast.
The investments will renew infrastructure that is, in many cases, 30 years old. It will also improve efficiency of the facilities, their operational reliability and flexibility, and reduce maintenance costs. A reliable supply of high-quality water is a critical element to the successful production of salmon at hatcheries and spawning channels.
This investment is part of ongoing efforts by the Government of Canada to reinvest in the 36-year-old Salmonid Enhancement Program. A $14 million renovation of the Quinsam River Hatchery in Campbell River was completed in 2014 and other hatcheries will be upgraded according to priority.
"Our Government is committed to enhancing, conserving and rebuilding wild salmon in British Columbia. That is why we are investing $34.2 million to upgrade and modernize hatcheries and spawning channels. Salmon hatcheries play a key role in our shared efforts to conserve and rebuild salmon stocks. As that rebuilding occurs, it will lead to an increase in recreational, commercial and Aboriginal fishing opportunities, which in turn is good for the province's economy,” said Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.
“The Pacific wild salmon has always been an important part of British Columbia’s economy and culture. Our Government is proud to support sustainable fisheries by making significant investments that include salmon production for harvest, stock assessment, habitat improvement, bolstered science, strong enforcement actions, education and best management practices,” said Andrew Saxton, MP for North Vancouver and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance.
TheFishSite News Desk