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Group asks Norwegian king to save BC wild salmon

An international organization is appealing to Norway's King Harald V to help save B.C.'s wild salmon from the impact of Norwegian-owned fish farms.

Pure Salmon, an organization with offices in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Chile and Australia, has sent an open letter to the king on the occasion of Aqua Nor, an international trade show for the aquaculture industry, which opens today in Trondheim, Norway.

In part, the letter reads:

As both the King of Norway and a wild salmon angler on the River Alta yourself, Your Royal Highness surely has an interest in protecting wild salmon both in Norway and internationally as well as preserving Norway's international reputation.

The 2010 Winter Olympics will be held along the shores of the Fraser River where the wild sockeye salmon that run past Norwegian-owned fish farms have been closed to fishing again this year.

When you meet with Marine Harvest, Cermaq, Grieg, the Norwegian Minister of Fisheries, Helga Pedersen, the Canadian Fisheries Minister, Gail Shea, and Scotland’s Minister for the Environment, Roseanna Cunningham, during Aqua Nor we therefore encourage you to ask why Norwegian companies are still being allowed to kill wild fish not just in Norway but also in Canada, Scotland and Ireland.

Pure Salmon's online news release contains the full text of the letter to the king, as well as a 13-minute video on B.C. coastal communities' efforts to show Norwegians what their companies are doing to our wild salmon.

Crawford Kilian is a contributing editor of The Tyee.

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