Letter: We must take better care of our oceans

For too long the oceans have been used as a dumping ground by one species: humans!

Dear editor,

Our Mother Earth is a blue planet because of ocean waters. For too long the oceans have been used as a dumping ground for garbage, for nuclear testing, for effluent and other toxic actions by one species: humans! Canada has the longest coast line of any country. We could be world leaders in how we regulate private ownership; marine park designation, search and rescue for all species at risk and restoration of damaged shorelines. We have a long journey to paddle before we reach that goal.

Canadians love the oceans that surround them. Being home to the world’s longest coastline comes with great responsibility. Climate change, ocean acidification, pollution and industrial pressures make this a critical moment in human history. That’s why I urge you to put your promises into full force and make ocean protection a priority for your government.

Here is an abbreviated list of policy recommendations, which can be found in more detail in the David Suzuki Foundation report “Charting coastal currents: Canada’s Pacific communities talk climate, culture, oceans and the future”.

• Implement ecosystem-based management in Canada’s oceans and fully protect 10 per cent of marine area by 2020

• Restore without delay habitat protections that were lost in the Fisheries Act and then engage Canadians in improving the act

• Offer wild salmon greater protection by implementing all of Justice Cohen’s recommendations and Wild Salmon Policy strategies

• Require improved health monitoring, disease reporting and data transparency for open net-pen finfish aquaculture

• Establish a north coast tanker ban on the West Coast, as promised during the election campaign

The complexity of ocean ecosystems and coastal communities requires thorough and comprehensive planning and policy. Please take the steps necessary to keep our oceans healthy now and for our children and grandchildren.

Betty Donaldson

Courtenay

Just Posted

A cuddle and a coffee: Six Island towns named among Canada’s most cozy

Sidney, Campbell River, Courtenay, Parksville, Tofino and Ucluelet crack Expedia’s top 40

Comox Valley Santa’s Workshop in need of bicycles for youngsters, gifts for teens

Santa’s Workshop, at 464 Puntledge Road (formerly the Red Cross building), is… Continue reading

New Coast Guard radar boosts marine traffic monitoring off B.C. coast

Six radar installations set up for Georgia Strait to Queen Charlotte Strait to Prince Rupert

Liquor store robbery suspect arrested

The Comox Valley RCMP have identified the suspect in relation to the… Continue reading

Everybody Deserves A Smile back for its 15th year

Local students leading the charge of spreading Christmas cheer to the Valley’s most vulnerable

Winter weather hits parts of Canada

As some parts of the country brace for cold, parts of B.C. remain warmer than 10 C

Canada’s health system commendable overall but barriers to care remain: UN

The United Nations says Canada’s health care system is “commendable” overall but vulnerable groups still face barriers to quality care.

Mid Island Farmers Institute discusses fleece at November meeting

Are you a lover of wool and local fibre? Interested in raising… Continue reading

Comox Valley Nature invites the public to learn about nature photography

Comox Valley Nature is hosting a public lecture on photography. Join Terry… Continue reading

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

Kelly Ellard’s boyfriend has statutory release revoked

Darwin Duane Dorozan had several parole infractions that found him ‘unmanageable’

Electoral reform ballot returns so far show higher Courtenay-Comox engagement

Area leads province in percentage of ballots turned in

Doctor’s note shouldn’t be required to prove you’re sick: poll

70% of Canadians oppose allowing employers to make you get a sick note

Port Alberni convenience store robbed

Police still searching for suspect

Most Read