Is Nova Scotia Gambling Away $25M Taxpayer Dollars?
Our NDP provincial government announced last week that it will invest $25M in Cooke Aquaculture’s
scheme to expand their salmon farming operation in Nova Scotia.
Cooke plans to invest an additional $150M build a new salmon hatchery in Digby, opening a fish processing plant in Shelburne,
and expanding a feed mill in Truro.
The venture promises about 400 jobs,
mainly in western NS, where the recent Bowater Mersey Paper Mill closure has left mill and forest workers in the region unemployed.
About 320 of the new jobs would be at the planned processing plant in Fisheries & Aquaculture Minister Sterling Belliveau’s
Although help is certainly needed, we shouldn’t be
too quick to grasp what may appear to be a helping hand. Although the plan may produce new jobs, they and existing salmon
farm jobs are likely to have a very short future, because salmon farms in Nova Scotia are simply not sustainable.
Nova Scotia exports about 80% of its farmed salmon to the US, and today’s technology enables
land-based salmon farms to profitably operate near major US markets.
So why should Americans continue to buy Nova Scotia salmon? Furthermore, this new technology will also enable other
major world markets to produce salmon close to home.
If this happens
Nova Scotia’s salmon farming industry’s market share will shrink rather than expand. Nova Scotia will become a
world loser rather than a world leader.
Our NDP government is gambling here
against the odds. I’m betting that the jobs will last less than 5 years and that our investment will be wasted.
On the short term, the new processing facility will require greater supply, and so this government/industry
plan must include creation of many more new salmon farms that will further threaten wild fish populations and the environment
of coastal Nova Scotia.
Unlike the short term jobs, these losses
will be long term, very possibly permanent.
Report on the June 23rd ESA Fishing Derby
Last Saturday young trouter Enya Sawlor
won the derby first prize, a Redington fly fishing outfit, with her 14 5/8” trout.
Gweneth Boutilier and Ralph Jack, ESA volunteers
who organized and supervised the derby, thanked “the volunteers who organized and helped at the derby, all who donated
prizes, food and gift certificates, the St. Mary’s Fish and Game Association and management of Nimrod’s Campground
for providing an excellent site, our District of St. Mary’s Recreation Department for supporting the community event,
and Nova Scotia Inland Fisheries for providing trout from the Fraser’s Mills Fish Hatchery.”
“And, of course, thanks to all derby entrants
and congratulations to the winners. All of you made the first annual Eastern SportFish Association fishing derby a success.”
Sandy Barnhill, treasurer of
the Eastern Sportfish Association, said “We extend a very warm welcome to all derby participants that became new members
Photos and highlights of the
derby can be found at the association’s website, www.sportfishns.ca.
Lately local trouters have been
reporting great fishing results from a parachute-style dry fly by New Glasgow’s Parker Wong.
River Magic Dry Fly hook, sizes 10 -14
Brown cock hackle fibres
Fluorescent red wool
Parachute Hackle: Brown cock dry fly hackle
Please send comments and suggestions to:
Please stay on the line