Species at risk in waters off Parksville Qualicum Beach double

'We need more conversations to happen between our governments'

The number of species at risk in the waters off Parksville Qualicum Beach has doubled in the last 10 years, according to a SeaDoc report unveiled at the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference in Seattle last week.

The report states that scientists recorded 119 at-risk species in 2013, up from 60 in 2002 — leading environmentalists to call for a special international body to co ordinate research and conservation in the three bodies of water that make up the Salish Sea: the Strait of Georgia, the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound.

“The border is a false line,” said SSEC executive director Christianne Wilhelmson. “We (Canada and the United States) need to connect.”

Wilhelmson said the conference brought together “all types of people with a passion for the Salish Sea” including policy makers, scientists and environmentalists in an effort to form connections and strengthen relations.

“We need more conversations to happen between our governments,” said Wilhelmson. “We need to understand each others laws around these shared waters.”

Wilhelmson said ocean acidification was a major theme of the conference, a pertinent issue in the Parksville Qualicum Beach area after approximately 10 million scallops were killed earlier this year forcing a local shellfish producer to scale back operations considerably.

“It’s a horrible image of what climate change can do,” she said of the unstable shellfish industry. “Climate change is here now — it’s not something of the future it’s now.”

Wilhelmson said climate change, fossil fuel exports and pollutants were also topical issues and attendees are calling on government to form some type of trans boundary organization to preserve the Salish Sea.

“We have species that are endangered in Canada but not in the U.S.,” she said. “We need to be treating this body of water the same way — how can one species cross the boarder and be more or less protected?”

While Canada and the U.S. have different legislative systems, Wilhelmson said we should still have environmental regulations that complement one another in terms of the Salish Sea.

“Wildlife and the environment know no boarders,” she said.

Just Posted

Parksville seniors getting stronger with age

Weightlifting couple qualify to compete at Worlds Masters in Montreal in August

Camera captures cougar lurking in Parksville’s Foster Park neighbourhood

Resident shared photo to alert others to big cat’s presence

RDN tipping fees set to go up in July

The Regional District of Nanaimo is set to increase tipping fees at… Continue reading

VIDEO: RCMP ask kids to help name soon-to-be police dogs

13 German shepherd puppies will be born this year

No injuries, pollution in Vancouver Harbour ship collision: Transport Canada

Transportation Safety Board says it has deployed a team of investigators look into the incident

Budget 2019: Five things to watch for in the Liberals’ final fiscal blueprint

Finance Minister Bill Morneau will release the Trudeau government’s final budget on Tuesday

New concussion guidelines launched for Canada’s Olympians, Paralympians

The guidelines will be in effect at this summer’s Pan American, Parapan American Games in Lima, Peru

Alphonso Davies doubtful for Canada game against French Guiana in Vancouver

Canada will be without injured captain Scott Arfield and veteran Will Johnson

Watchdog called after man who yelled racial slurs at B.C. vigil hurt during arrest

BC RCMP say man was ‘acting suspiciously’ at prayer vigil for victims of New Zealand mosque shootings

NDP’s Jagmeet Singh steps into the House of Commons, making history

Burnaby South MP becomes first visible minority to lead a federal party in the House of Commons

Reeling Port Alice about to lose its only bank

Scotiabank branch closure follows latest mill setback, bad for business and the elderly

Most Read