Cannings speaks about fish

South Okanagan Member of Parliament Richard Cannings spoke passionately in Parliament on Friday about a proposed amendment to the Fisheries Act that would, among other things, mean that decisions under the act would need to take local First Nations into consideration. 

Cannings referenced his childhood in the Interior as his inspiration for speaking up about this act. 

"When I was a kid in the Okanagan, very few salmon came up the river from the Pacific," he said. "However, after years of work by the Okanagan Nation Alliance and other groups, we often see runs of over 100,000 fish, occasionally 400,000 or more. The Okanagan River is once again red with sockeye in the autumn. In most years there is a successful sports fishery for sockeye in Osoyoos Lake."

He said the local First Nations vision of healthy lakes and rivers filled with salmon is one he shares. 

"The vision includes restoring salmon not just to the entire Okanagan system, but to the upper Columbia River as well, reviving the salmon culture in the Kootenays," Cannings said. 

"That small creek I used to fish in as a kid now has more than rainbow trout. Every year a few chinook salmon, the big guys, make it into that creek after their epic trip up from the Pacific. That is beyond my wildest dreams."

More information on Bill C-68, which would amend the Fisheries Act, can be found here. 

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