The New Brunswick Salmon Council (NBSC) is a non-profit, volunteer based organization, dedicated to the protecting wild Atlantic salmon and supporting the restoration and enhancement activity on all watersheds in New Brunswick.
NB Power Chair, Ed Barrett, Delivers Intriguing Presentation at Fredericton Fundraising Dinner
BY:John Bagnall, NB Salmon Council Communications Chair
DATE:April 24, 2018
On April 11 of this year, the Atlantic Salmon Federation fundraising dinner was held at the Fredericton Inn. The Dinner Planning Committee, chaired by Jason Hallett, was comprised of volunteers from the NB Salmon Council (NBSC or the Council), affiliates such as the Fredericton Fish and Game and Association and others from the local angling community. During the event, the 233 attendees were serenaded by musician Clinton Fernandez.
Master-of-Ceremonies, Rose Arsenault, once again did a fine job at keeping the proceedings flowing on schedule. One of Rose’s many communications was her recognition of Rod Currie as this year’s recipient of the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Wild Atlantic Salmon Conservation.
Jardine Auctioneers donated their services, and helped to generate revenue from successful bids on 14 items including fishing trips to the Ristigouche Salmon Club’s Red Pine Lodge, the Province’s Larry’s Gulch, McKeil Brook, and Slate Island.
Photo 1Attendees Enjoying the Fredericton Dinner
This year’s Dinner Honoree was Mr. Ed Barrett, who chairs the Board of Directors of NB Power, which, under his guidance, is now listening to and addressing the Council’s concerns. Mr. Barrett and his staff have recognized the importance of the St. John River’s wild Atlantic salmon to the citizens of NB. They have worked closely with regulators, First Nations and stakeholders to bring about improvements to NB Power facilities and operations to make them more compatible with the requirements of wild fish populations. Two major, recently-implemented NB Power initiatives are: adjustments to improve winter water temperatures in the discharge from the storage reservoirs in the headwaters of the Tobique River, and the design and construction of the recently-unveiled, state-of-the art downstream fish-passage and collection facility at Tobique Narrows Dam. Both interventions will significantly improve the survival rates of the Atlantic salmon of the great St. John (Wolastoq) River system.
After his introduction by Past-President of the St. John Basin Salmon Recovery Inc., Gary Spencer, Mr. Barrett delivered a speech, thanking the ASF and NBSC for their recognition of NB Power for their recent efforts in salmon conservation. In his encouraging presentation, Mr. Barrett stressed that the two previously-mentioned mitigation measures on the Tobique were just a start; that NB Power is committed to continuing to implement measures to improve the compatibility of power generation with a renewed and sustainable upper St. John River Atlantic salmon population. He surprised the attendees when he asserted that if the Mactaquac Generating Station had not been built, and were instead proposed today, it would never be constructed. He also informed the audience that, in the coming years, NB Power will be relying more on a diverse range of renewable energy sources, and less on mega-project type stations to generate power.
These welcome remarks seem to confirm the arrival of a new era during which NB Power and conservation groups can, and are willing, to co-operate to tackle the remaining fish passage problems on the upper river. Mr. Barrett’s address was a fitting cap to a very enjoyable evening.
Photo 2Fredericton Dinner Honoree, Mr. Ed Barrett, Chair, NB Power Board of Directors Addressing the Dinner Attendees
Message from DFO regarding the Atlantic Salmon Regulations
At the time I write this message, no decision regarding the Atlantic salmon fisheries in New Brunswick or in the Gulf Region has been announced yet for 2018. Please be informed that the Atlantic salmon recreational fisheries will start April 15 in New Brunswick (where open for black salmon fishing) under last year’s fishing measures, that are still in effect, until further notice.
A/Regional Senior Fisheries Management Officer / Agent régional principal de gestion des pêches p.i.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada / Pêches et Océans Canada
ATLANTIC SALMON UNITES MI’GMAQ, ANGLOPHONE AND FRANCOPHONE ORGANIZATIONS OF THE RESTIGOUCHE RIVER WATERSHED
On February 14th and 15th, interest groups from the Restigouche River Watershed gathered together for the 4th annual Salmon Summit. Listuguj Fisheries, in partnership with the Gespe’gewaq Mi’gmaq Resource Council (GMRC) and the Restigouche River Watershed Management Council hosted a two-day workshop in Campbellton, New Brunswick. The goal of the workshop was to strengthen relationships between all interested parties, as they moved forward in a united fashion, for Restigouche River Atlantic Salmon.
Dr. Alistair Bath, a human dimension’s in wildlife resource management expert, facilitated the workshop. Dr. Bath, from Memorial University, has over 35 years of experience bringing together groups around the world. “I think the group really focused on a lot of common ground and there are a lot of things that are really positive to move forward,” said Dr. Bath. “Governments really listen if a diverse group of interest can actually reach an agreement. I have had ministers of environment not change words of single management plans because, why pick a side when there is a diverse group that has agreed on something, let’s just accept that.”
During the two-day workshop, the groups planned ways to continue working together in a positive manner and strengthening their relationship. The groups formulated a vision statement during the workshop and it aims at “fostering relationships built on mutual respect of diverse cultures to enhance Atlantic salmon and its habitat for future generations.”
Science Director, Carole-Anne Gillis says, “The salmon is the one that brings us all together. We all care for it. It is what binds us even though there have been conflicts. No matter the differences in ways of knowing, we create a respectful space to learn from another. Locally, we strive to continue building these meaningful relationships.
“We congratulate NB Power on the opening of their salmon pre-smolt, smolt and kelt collection and by-pass facility at the Tobique Narrows Dam. Thanks also to DFO. The facility will be a huge boost to restoring salmon to the upper St. John River. The NBSC was instrumental in lobbying for the construction of this facility. Now on to implementing effective upstream and downstream passage at all other dams in the system and towards restoring salmon to their historic range including the Aroostook River. The photos here are from the opening of the facility on November 20, 2017.”