Vast majority of British Columbians (86%) are concerned about declining wild salmon stocks (Insights West poll, July 2021)
According to a recent Insights West poll, 86% of British Columbians are concerned about declining wild salmon stocks. Additionally, 75% of British Columbians support transition away from open net pen fish farms, and 66% feel the transition needs to happen immediately.
Vancouver, BC — Insights West released a poll on Friday, July 23rd examining public perception around declining wild Pacific salmon stocks, finding that an overwhelming 86% of British Columbians are concerned about declining wild salmon stocks. The level of concern is a full 10 points higher than other well known environmental issues including climate change and single-use plastics.
Three-quarters of BC adults support the federal government’s mandate to create a plan to transition all open net pen fish farms out of BC waters by 2025—according to Insights West, this level of support is among the highest seen in numerous polls that assess public support for BC issues.
A strong majority (75%) of BC residents have an unfavourable impression of open net pens, and 66% feel the transition away from open net pen fish farms needs to happen immediately. British Columbians from all region, demographics and political affiliations feel strongly that open net pen fish farms should be transitioned from BC waters – with particularly strong support for this from North/Central and South Vancouver Island and the BC Interior. Interestingly, 63% of British Columbians express high favourability for land-based closed containment fish farms, suggesting that BC fish farms companies should follow the course of major fish farms players around the world.
People living in North/Central and South Vancouver Island were the most concerned (89%) about declining wild salmon stocks, followed by 88% of those living in the interior of BC, 85% in Metro Vancouver, 84% in northern BC and 79% in Surrey.
The poll found that concern for wild salmon unites British Columbians across region, age, gender and political affiliation. Strong majorities of supporters from all political parties believe BC’s wild Pacific salmon population is at risk.
The majority of BC residents agree that wild Pacific salmon is an important part of BC’s culture (92%), an important food source for the survival of other species such as grizzlies, orcas, and eagles (94%), and that we have an ethical obligation to protect endangered or declining species (92%).
About the study
Results are based on an online survey with 2,064 BC residents aged 18 years or older from June 14-22, 2021. Overall sample of this size is considered accurate within +/-2.2%, 19 times out of 20. To ensure a representative sample of BC adults, the data were weighted by age, gender, and region according to Statistics Canada Census data.
Ask your local Member of Parliament to take action to give wild Pacific salmon a fighting chance: https://www.wildfirst.ca/mp-email/
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