After several weeks of travelling around the province to hear different communities speak out about the decline of BC’s sockeye salmon, the Cohen Commission inquiry officially began on Monday in Vancouver. Naturally, the public relations manoeuvres were not far behind. Over 400 anti-fish-farm protesters were present, including some who had paddled down the Fraser River from Hell’s Gate, while the BC Salmon Farmer’s Association took to print with newspaper ads pointing out this year’s 35-million salmon run. Despite these opposing positions, Cohen regularly heard parties say during the provincial tour that “we are all in this together” to seek the sockeye’s survival.
“I remain cautiously optimistic that while principled and reasonable people may disagree on the process or path to achieving a result, that nevertheless, with a collaborative effort, answers can be found,” Cohen said. …[read full article]