Georgia Strait Alliance is the only citizens' group focused on protecting the marine environment in and around the whole Strait of Georgia – Canada's most at-risk natural environment, and the place where 70% of British Columbians live, work and play. We are committed to a future for our region that includes clean water and air, healthy wild salmon runs, rich marine life and natural areas, and sustainable communities.

April 30, 2010

The Get Out Migration Takes to the Wild Salmon Narrows

Much of my time working as a salmon aquaculture campaigner is spent in an office, on the computer or the phone, interspersed with large indoor meetings and presentations. Yesterday was different. Yesterday I had the pleasure of joining the Get Out Migration, an incredible grassroots initiative spawned by scientist Alexandra Morton.

I couldn’t contain my excitement as we left the dock in Campbell River. We were about to join up with the Migration in the Wild Salmon Narrows, a migratory corridor Georgia Strait Alliance has been working to clear of open net-cage salmon farms. Our little crew of three people met up with another half dozen boats as we reached the first three farms packed together at the west end of Okisollo Channel.

A helicopter buzzed overhead as Michelle Nickerson plunged into the freezing water and twice swam the length of Mainstream’s Venture Pt. salmon farm. This was a symbolic gesture for juvenile salmon that are migrating past the lice infested farms at this very moment. People are embracing this journey by land and sea from Sointula to Victoria and celebrating wild salmon in any way they know how; through art, song, community gatherings, filmmaking, blogging, photography, taking to the water and streets, and even swimming past a salmon farm.

But our day wasn’t over, it had only just begun. As we came to the Oksillo rapids, it was clear that this was a day of celebration, as several boats played around in the area’s upwelling nutrient rich water so vital to wild salmon. We then followed Okisollo Channel as it turns south, where we saw the devastation under the Cyrus Rocks farm with an underwater video camera, and the mood became more solemn.

As we moved south through Surge Narrows, spirits once again soared as we joined up with another flotilla, swelling our number of boats to a couple dozen, salmon flags flapping in the wind, horns honking, people cheering for wild salmon, and the helicopter once again recording the excitement from above.

The Get Out Migration has captured the imagination and hearts of communities across Vancouver Island and throughout BC. Yesterday it was evident that the Migration’s tag line, wild salmon are sacred, is at the heart of our west coast culture. Whatever people have in them to give, we are giving it all for wild salmon. We have to, or they will disappear. So stand up and be counted, because if we don’t stand up for wild salmon, no one will.

Filmmaker Twyla Roscovich has produced a video of our day on the water in the Wild Salmon Narrows. Enjoy…

Take urgent action to clear the Wild Salmon Narrows of open net-cage salmon farms!

April 20, 2010

Everyone Loves Wild Salmon Don't They?

Watch this video on the impacts that open net-cage salmon farming has on wild salmon, the marine environment, and your health.

Learn more about salmon farming impacts and what you can do.

April 12, 2010

"Green" Boating Week BC!

Though the winter has been kind of dark and dreary, a few hardy souls spent some time on our beautiful BC waters, enjoying the delights and challenges that winter cruising brings. For the majority of us however, it's just been the last couple of weeks when we've started to think more about our boats and the wonderful cruising and fishing in the months ahead. A couple of serious blows focused attention quickly on our boats and discussions around climate change was heard more often on the docks.

Though I work in the environmental field, it does seem to me that folks generally are more interested in issues of sustainability and healthy habitats and boaters are no exception! With more people getting into the boating lifestyle BC boating week is a good time for us to promote Green Boating and Clean Marinas.

While there are activities happening all over the province we will be putting our efforts in at some Nanaimo locations. On Saturday we will have a display at the Big Island Inflata-boats Marine Garage Sale and on Sunday we will again be doing a presentation at the West Marine store. Both events are also helping us raise a few funds to assist our marine conservation effort.

As boaters we are stewards of the marine environment and it is up to all of us to keep our impacts to a minimum. Come and join us during BC's "Green" Boating Week to find out more ways you can be a sustainable boater and how your marina can become one of Beautiful BC's eco-rated facilities!