Baynes Sound needs balance, not more aquaculture

Dear editor,

Your one-sided article entitled “Baynes Sound aquaculture smaller due to political resistance” seemed more in the spirit of an aquaculture press release than informed journalism.

I do hope you allow me to respond.

Given the fact that the majority of Baynes Sound residents surveyed said “no” to increasing shellfish aquaculture, is it asking too much to leave the last 10 per cent of Baynes Sound for recreation and tourism?

Ninety per cent is already claimed by the aquaculture industry. Where is the balance?

As a citizen of the Comox Valley, I feel very disrespected by Mr. Gant in his quote suggesting people are interfering with his business and not coming to him to understand his operation.

His business concerns public property. It also creates uncertainty for other business and resident stakeholders.

Rest assured, I have bothered to come to him to try and find out what is truly happening. I state this fact, as I don’t want the public to be misled that people are mindlessly complaining.

I feel well-informed about this industry and understand the impact potential to stakeholders. Baynes Sound is a nature lover's dream destination and tourism can help us diversify our economy beyond aquaculture, but we need to leave enough of the sound in its natural state.

The DFO website reports the change in size of this tenure application was due to sanitary closures. If that is the political resistance Mr. Gant speaks of, he should count himself lucky.

Let’s not forget that 88 hectares is just one tenure application and it far exceeds the average size. The provincial government has to understand that tourism dollars, recreation and a family-first environment trumps uncertain aquaculture dollars, especially in light of the massive die off at Island Scallops.

With respect to the development of the geoduck industry, coincidentally the DFO is inviting public input into their Geoduck Management Framework starting March 6 and ending April 19.

See http://friendsofbaynessound.wordpress.com for more information.

At the very least, visit http://genuinegeoduck.com and read the article pioneering sustainable beneficial change — the Manatee Holdings mandate is stated at the bottom of the blog post.

Then visit the blog for the Coalition to Protect Puget Sound Habitat to gain an understanding of what is happening in Puget Sound as they have at least a 15-year head start seeking balance in the shellfish industry.

Whatever you do, don’t watch this video — www.youtube.com/watch?v=inHHrwSe34M&feature=youtu.be.

Sue Vince,



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