Federal and provincial governments get failing grades on protecting BC wild salmon: poll of British Columbians
New public opinion research shows that British Columbians overwhelmingly support greater protection of wild salmon populations by government. A new survey by Mainstreet Research shows that BC residents think both the federal and provincial governments are not doing a good job of protecting BC’s wild salmon population, and they expect better.
“The importance of protecting wild salmon in BC cannot be over stated. Over 90% of BC residents think it is at least somewhat important with almost two thirds considering it very important (61%)”, said Quito Maggi, President and CEO of Mainstreet Research. “Our findings show that wild salmon protection is an issue that transcends party lines.”
Among party supporters, 99% of Green Party of Canada voters said that wild salmon protection is important – the highest among federal party supporters. The same is true among provincial parties, where 94% of BC Green supporters say that protecting wild salmon is important.
“Just 20% think the Trudeau government is doing at least a good job at protecting wild salmon, including just 5% who think they are doing a very good job,” continued Maggi. “The Horgan government scores marginally better – 21% of respondents saying it is at least doing at least a good job, with 4% who feel that the BC government is doing a very good job on the issue.”
“Although pipelines have been dominating the headlines, these findings clearly show that wild salmon protection resonates more strongly with British Columbians as an issue that governments need to address,” said Tavish Campbell from the Wild First campaign – a coalition of mainstream business, academic, Indigenous and environmental leaders pressing for a science-based and orderly transition to sustainable methods of aquaculture.
“The research shows that there is a strong public sentiment that it’s time for both levels of government to put partisanship and special interests aside and address the root causes of declining and unpredictable salmon returns,” Campbell continued. “We need to prioritize the issues that matter most to British Columbians, and protecting our salmon takes the prize among environmental concerns in this province.”
The Mainstreet Research survey asked respondents to rate relative priority areas of concern. These findings are part of a larger survey commissioned by Wild First that looks at provincial and federal issues. Additional findings from the survey will be released in the days ahead.First Nations
About Wild First
Wild First is a campaign powered by concerned Canadians, First Nations, business leaders, scientists, and allies who understand that the current salmon farming practices are putting the health of our coastal ecosystem at grave risk. Wild First is calling for government, industry, and the scientific community to come together and transition West Coast salmon farming to sustainable closed containment aquaculture by 2025. Doing so will protect threatened salmon runs from the pollution and disease transfer of current open net pens, and will preserve wild salmon as a keystone species that supports the wider and vitally important Pacific marine aquatic ecosystem.