By Rochelle Baker Local Journalism Initiative Reporter First Nations fighting to get salmon farms out of the ocean are dismayed in the wake of federal Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray’s recent engagement tour on a plan to transition open-net pen operations in B.C. Murray spent much of last week visiting Vancouver Island aquaculture operations and meeting with First Nations, industry operators, wild salmon conservation groups and coastal community leaders in Campbell River and Port Hardy. The federal Liberals’ 2019 election platform promised “to develop a responsible plan to transition from open-net pen salmon farming in coastal waters to closed containment systems by 2025,” which sent the salmon farming industry into a flap. Murray’s subsequent mandate from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is much the same, minus the reference to closed containment systems.
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