VANCOUVER (July 17, 2020) – The BC Liberal Steelhead Caucus is pleased to see the federal government taking action to support wild steelhead populations but continues to call on the province to take further steps to protect the endangered species.
“The BC Liberal Steelhead Caucus has been calling on the Province for years to protect this valuable species and it is encouraging to see the federal government taking real steps to support fish populations here in B.C. — but there is still more that needs to be done,” said Fraser-Nicola MLA and Steelhead Caucus Co-Chair Jackie Tegart. “The NDP has been ignoring this issue for years and we need to see them take immediate action or this iconic species will be lost forever.”
The BC Liberal Steelhead Caucus has been working to bring awareness to the need for more conservation, including a tour last fall where they travelled southwestern B.C. visiting hatcheries and fisheries restoration projects and meeting with experts and First Nations about serious conservation concerns regarding steelhead populations. The federal government recently committed funds to support wild salmon and steelhead conservation in B.C, but there has still been no action from the BC NDP government.
“Steelhead are a provincial, not federal responsibility, and if the NDP continues to sit on its hands and overlook the need for real action to protect our marvellous steelhead, the species will soon be extinct. Is prominent species extinction the environmental legacy we can expect from this NDP-Green government?” asked Ralph Sultan, co-chair of the BC Liberal Steelhead Caucus and MLA for West Vancouver-Capilano. “It is high time for real and decisive action from the NDP so we can continue to find wild steelhead populations in our rivers for years to come.”