Canada-British Columbia Agreement on Aquaculture Management

From 2013 to 2018, the Indigenous Aquaculture initiative in Canada worked to increase the participation of Indigenous communities in the Canadian aquaculture industry.48 The initiative organized workshops and assisted communities by providing technical expertise and helping to develop feasibility studies and pilot projects, among others. Under the provisions of the Fisheries Act, aquaculture facilities must be monitored and inspected. Between 2011 and 2019, 2,494 inspections were conducted, 476 violations were reported, and 19 charges were laid (see Figure 2).22 In 2019, Canada reported more than 260 aquaculture companies. The size breakdown of these employers was as follows: Specific questions related to state approval for aquaculture should be addressed to the appropriate email address: a debris management plan is required for all applications. It must be attached to your application, otherwise the processing of your application may be delayed. For more information, see the Debris Management Plan Guide (pdf, 168 KB). The agreement replaces the Memorandum of Understanding between Canada and British Columbia on Aquaculture Development of September 6, 1988. Following the February 2009 decision of the Supreme Court of British Columbia, which resulted in a change in roles and responsibilities for aquaculture management in the province, it became clear that a new agreement was needed for the day-to-day management of the sector. The agreement applies to all forms of aquaculture, including stock enhancement and government research programs as well as non-commercial aquaculture activities. Proscovia Alando, an insect farmer, aquaculture consultant and entrepreneur based in Kenya, wants to build the largest fish farm in East Africa to improve the prospects of women and youth in the region.

This backgrounder will examine aquaculture production in Canada, related employment opportunities and the industry`s unique legal framework, including recent regulatory reforms. Some of the challenges and opportunities facing the aquaculture industry in Canada are also examined. Canada and B.C. share the common goal of having an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable aquaculture sector in B.C. and are committed to working together to approve and regulate aquaculture and land use in the most effective, efficient and transparent manner possible. DFO, Transport Canada and B.C. The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resources and Rural Development is working together to review applications for the operation of an aquaculture facility in B.C. A harmonized application form sets out the information requirements for the three agencies to conduct their review.

FrontCounter BC is the one-stop shop to receive all aquaculture applications. To date, there have been no similar court decisions or agreements affecting other provinces, which means that the management of the aquaculture industry remains a shared responsibility between the federal and provincial governments in these jurisdictions. Table 3 lists the key responsibilities related to aquaculture management and the relevant level of government. The B.C. The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development is responsible for the management of Crown lands, including the distribution of land ownership for aquaculture. This includes ownership of aquaculture facilities and secondary uses on land covered with water, highlands and forelands. The Department is also responsible for the management and authorization of wild harvesting and cultivation of aquatic plants. The inconsistent allocation of responsibilities for the aquaculture industry across Canada also adds a layer of regulatory complexity that could hinder the expansion of the industry. The federal government`s goal is to promote aquaculture with an open net pen at B.C.

could lead to additional uncertainty for aquaculture producers in this province and other parts of the country, because at this stage, it is unclear what this transition would look like, what it would have to take, and what the costs of this transition could be for the industry. In Canada, 45 species are grown commercially, including finfish, shellfish and marine plants.2 Coastal fish production is the most common type of aquaculture in the country. There are also many other forms of aquaculture production, including freshwater net pens, land-based systems, and improving tidal soil cultivation (see Figure 1).3 In 2019, Canada produced 187,026 tonnes of aquaculture products worth more than $1.2 billion,4, citing the production and value of Atlantic salmon for fish and oysters for shellfish. Many Canadian aquaculture companies have been accredited by third parties for various certifications, including Aquaculture Best Practices (EAPs) and sustainable fish production, while some facilities have been certified organic. These certifications can increase marketing and revenue and provide “additional certainty for responsible fish farming practices” for consumers and the general public.47 Provide scientific information in a user-friendly format and target information to different user groups (e.g. B, the general public, scientists or aquaculture producers) could also increase transparency and ultimately lead to better informing Canadians about the industry and its practices. As the department responsible for regulating aquaculture at the federal level, DFO is also responsible for sharing information on the industry. Given concerns about environmental impacts, there is a need to better communicate the scientific evidence behind government decisions. In a December 2018 report, the Independent Expert Panel on Aquaculture Science noted that it is “sometimes difficult to gather information on existing scientific reports, research programs or research results” related to aquaculture results on the DFO website.

The Panel recommended that DFO create an aquaculture information portal and adapt it to target groups such as the general public, scientists and industry. This would make it possible to communicate “information on scientific results, scientific uncertainties and science-based decisions at the appropriate level”. 32 Under the Fisheries Act,13 the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (through DFO) “regulates the aquaculture industry to protect fish and fish habitat. The Act establishes powers for fishing licences, management, protection and prevention of pollution. 14 Most Canadian aquaculture farms are small or micro-enterprises, and only nine enterprises are medium-sized. In 2019, DFO reported that more than 3,700 Canadians worked directly in the aquaculture industry.8 At the end of the initiative, funding and support were provided through the Integrated Northern Commercial Fisheries Initiative, which “supports the development of community-based commercial fishing and Indigenous-owned aquaculture operations.” 49 Greater participation of Indigenous peoples in the aquaculture industry could contribute to industry development, job creation for Indigenous communities, and reconciliation. Aquaculture production has increased significantly over the past 35 years, both in Canada and globally. British Columbia leads Canada`s fish production (mainly salmon), while Prince Edward Island leads the country`s mussel production. In 2019, 187,026 tonnes of seafood were produced by The Canadian aquaculture sector worth more than $1.2 billion, contributing to the local economies of many small and coastal communities.

Canada commercially cultivates 45 species of fish, shellfish and marine plants. In this way, a large number of Canadian fishery products can be marketed domestically and internationally.46 High-quality specialty products are also produced by the aquaculture industry. For example, some land-based plants in Canada produce products such as caviar. Several provisions of the Fisheries Act relate to the management of aquaculture activities in Canada. The Pacific Aquaculture Regulations and the Aquaculture Activities Regulations are the best known.15 The responsibility for regulating and licensing aquaculture in British Columbia (B.C) is shared by a number of provincial and federal agencies. Applicants are required to pay an application fee for the province or to modify or replace an existing aquaculture operation when submitting an application for a new aquaculture area. The fees for new applications are listed in the scale of land tenure fees and application fees (PDF, 49 KB) and the fees for modifications and replacements in various land rights (PDF, 58 KB). VANCOUVER – The Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, and Ben Stewart, Minister of Agriculture for the Province of British Columbia (B.C.), today signed a new aquaculture management agreement […]

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