moved for leave to introduce Bill C-257, An Act to amend the Fisheries Act (closed containment aquaculture).
Mr. Speaker, as you are well aware, there is a wild salmon emergency in B.C. Therefore, today it is my honour to rise and introduce a bill, seconded by the member for Victoria, that would strengthen the Fisheries Act by requiring British Columbia fish farms to move from harmful open-net pens to safe closed containment systems.
The bill has been introduced three times by my friend, former colleague and B.C. MLA Fin Donnelly, who was just named the parliamentary secretary for fisheries and aquaculture. It is beyond time for the government to act. Three successive governments have failed to get the job done. My bill sets out a timeline and directs the minister to deliver a plan within one year of receiving royal assent, not at some unknown date in the future.
We have the potential to be leaders in closed containment. It is imperative that the government act now to save wild Pacific salmon while protecting the sensitive ecosystems where we work and live, and protecting the important jobs and workers in this industry.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)