Fisheries Resource Conservation Council Disbanded
Ottawa - The Green Party of Canada decries the
recent decision of the Government of Canada to cut all funding to the Fisheries
Resource Conservation Council. The Council was created in 1993 with the mandate
of providing recommendations on conservation strategies for the Atlantic
fishery to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. "The Harper
Government seems determined to gut all environmental protection from sea to
sea," said Green Leader Elizabeth May, Member of Parliament for
The Council consisted of representatives from the fishing industry and scientists
from various disciplines, drawn from each of the Atlantic Provinces, Quebec and
Nunavut. A small Secretariat provided support from Ottawa.
"It is death for environmental protection by a thousand small cuts,"
said May. "First we see scientists chopped from various
environmental ministries, then we see the killing of the Canadian Environmental
Network, now the sword has dropped on the Fisheries Resource Conservation
Council. Where will it end?"
"The purpose behind the Fisheries Resource Conservation Council was to ensure
that sound scientific decisions were being made that also made sense for the
fishery," said Green Fisheries Critic Janice Harvey. "If we are
no longer making science-based decisions on our fish quotas, if we have fewer
scientists examining stocks, if the Ministry no longer communicates with fishermen,
there is no way that we can properly manage our fisheries. With climate
change bringing real challenges in terms of ocean water temperature and
acidity, this is the worst possible time for these cutbacks."