Captain Kirk and Bill C-518
Bill C-518 is an act of political leadership — details of the bill below — that we hope you’ll take a moment to support by sending a quick email or snail mail letter.
This background is adapted from an article on MP Fin Donnelly’s website. http://www.findonnelly.ca/
William Shatner has thrown his support behind NDP Fisheries and Oceans Critic Fin Donnelly’s efforts to save British Columbia’s wild salmon.
"I love West Coast wild salmon, they are part of the Canadian fabric, but they are in serious trouble – they face many threats, the latest being sea lice from fish farms," says Shatner. "The Federal government can’t continue to ignore the plight of wild salmon. We must do everything possible to ensure that these magnificent creatures are protected, and Fin Donnelly’s Bill will help do that."
"I am thrilled that Mr. Shatner has joined us on our campaign," said Fin Donnelly. "It demonstrates the critical mass that is building for the federal government to finally step up after years of neglect and deal with these threats to wild salmon before it is too late."
Bill C-518 would require the federal Fisheries Minister to develop, table and implement a plan that would ensure fish farm operations on BC’s west coast transition to closed containment systems. This would mean that all salmon fish waste, excess fish food, and parasites, like sea lice would remain inside a solid barrier and not pollute wild salmon habitat.
"This is the first practical step that the Federal government can do protect one of the most valuable wild fisheries left on earth," said biologist Alexandra Morton, "I applaud William Shatner for his support of Fin Donnelly’s astute leadership on this issue.”
Please join us in writing your own letter of support for Bill C-518 to your MP as well as the following:
Gail Shea, MP, Federal Fisheries & Oceans Minister (Shea.G@parl.gc.ca)
Gordon Campbell, Premier of British Columbia (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Stephen Harper, Prime Minister, (Harper.S@parl.gc.ca)
Gerry Byrne, MP, Liberal Opposition Critic for Fisheries & Oceans (Byrne.G@parl.gc.ca)
Raynald Blais, MP, Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine (Blais.R@parl.gc.ca)
Denise Savoie, MP, Victoria (Savoie.D@parl.gc.ca)
Christian Paradis, MP, Minister of Natural Resources (Paradis.C@parl.gc.ca)
Jim Prentice, MP, Environment Minister (Prentice.J@parl.gc.ca)
Chuck Strahl, MP, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Ottawa, (Strahl.C@parl.gc.ca)
Fin Donnelly, MP, NDP Westcoast Fisheries Critic (Donnelly.F@parl.gc.ca)
In the tradition of lengthy salmon posts, another tidbit from The Captain:
FIN IN THE NEWS: Shatner beams in to salmon debate
Fri 11 Jun 2010
from the GLobe and Mail
As Captain Kirk, he often lectured his crew to respect life and not to take things for granted. So it seemed appropriate, if a tad surreal, to hear William Shatner lecture reporters on the importance of salmon to British Columbia’s ecosystem.
"Salmon feed and nurture not only the animals that are on the land but the sea as well, and the plants and trees and shrubbery," the 79-year-old actor’s disembodied voice told a news conference Thursday that had been organized by the New Democrats.
"The fauna and the flora of the British Columbia river shores and rivers are nurtured by the salmon. Without the salmon, they die. And when they die, [there is] a huge rent in the tapestry of nature in that area. It is a basic species that must be saved."
Mr. Shatner called into the event from Los Angeles and did not take any questions after his five-minute speech about the fish. But he made an impassioned appeal for their protection.
The purpose of the news conference was to highlight a private-member’s bill drafted by Fin Donnelly, a New Democrat from British Columbia,
Mr. Shatner, who was born and raised in Montreal, conceded that he has never met Mr. Donnelly. Nor has he read his bill.
"But my opinion is that anybody who is trying to do something about as basic a species as salmon must be listened to," he said. "And if something positive can come from Mr. Donnelly’s bill, I urge everybody within hearing to help with it."
It was during the filming of an episode of TV’s Boston Legal, in which he played bombastic lawyer Denny Crane, that the actor first developed an interest in salmon.
The episode, shot on the northern part of Vancouver Island, highlighted the problem of sea lice on salmon stocks, and Mr. Shatner said he was taught about the fish.
And when a Facebook page touted him as a potential successor to Michaelle Jean as Canada’s governor-general, he quipped via Twitter:
"Would they accept me if I campaign for salmons’ rights?"
His "rage," he said, is against companies that act without conscience and care only about the bottom line.
For their part, salmon farmers contacted by The Globe and Mail were left scratching their heads at Mr. Shatner’s decision to expound the problems of their industry.
Laurie Jenson, the community relations manager with Mainstream Canada, the second-largest producer of farmed salmon in B.C.,
"Mainstream Canada, like all the other farming companies in B.C., is an environmentally conscious company committed to protecting the environment where it operates and supports initiatives that will enhance the numbers of wild salmon stock," Ms. Jenson said.
"We care about wild salmon and the oceans we farm in."