For Immediate Release
June 9, 2021

Media Contact:
Neville Crabbe - ASF Communications
(506) 529-1033

Greenland defies scientific consensus as U.S., Canada, and European countries push for reduced salmon catch

ST. ANDREWS - Delegates to the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization (NASCO), who met virtually last week, have adopted a one-year, interim regulatory measure for the Atlantic salmon fishery off west Greenland.

Greenland representatives at NASCO unilaterally put forward a 27-tonne (8100 salmon) total allowable catch proposal with no payback provision for recent overharvests. This follows the expiry of a three-year regulatory measure that included a 30-t total allowable harvest and contravenes scientific advice provided to NASCO, which states there should be no mixed stock harvest off Greenland.

NASCO is an international forum in which member countries discuss issues related to Atlantic salmon and set regulatory measures, although decisions are not binding. Despite criticism from U.S., Canadian, and European members, the Greenland delegation persisted, and its proposal for the 2021 Greenland fishery was accepted.

The Atlantic Salmon Federation (ASF) and the North Atlantic Salmon Fund (NASF) are non-government observers at NASCO and followed the Greenland harvest negotiations closely.

“The Greenland Atlantic salmon fishery is small and well managed compared to the past, however it is still having an outsized negative effect on populations in home-water countries around the North Atlantic,” said Bill Taylor, president of ASF. “Like the U.S. and Canadian representatives to NASCO, who spoke strongly against this interim regulatory measure, ASF is disappointed and concerned.”

Because Atlantic salmon from more than 2,000 rivers in North America and Europe migrate to ocean feeding grounds off Greenland, participants in the fishery there capture individuals from relatively healthy populations alongside critically endangered ones. In addition, only fish that spend multiple winters at sea travel to Greenland. These large fish are predominantly female and carry significantly more eggs than smaller adults.

“The large salmon that are critical spawners are far less abundant than they used to be in Europe and U.K., and therefore it is important to protect them. Despite major improvements in the Greenland Atlantic salmon fishery in the last few years, we are worried that the new interim regulatory measure will not do enough to protect these fragile stocks,” said Elvar Fridriksson of NASF, based in Iceland.

In 2019, before Covid-19 suspended an international sampling program for landed Atlantic salmon in Greenland, genetic analysis revealed that approximately 75% of individuals sampled in a given year were of North American origin, where many populations are the focus of intense, ongoing recovery efforts led by federal, state, provincial, indigenous and non-government organizations.

ASF and NASF recognize the right of Greenlanders to fish salmon in their territorial waters. However, current harvest levels must be balanced with the responsibility we all have to protect nature and the environment. ASF and NASF were aligned with the U.S. and Canadian NASCO delegations calling for a 20-t total allowable harvest, in line with our current Greenland Salmon Conservation Agreement.

Signed in 2018, the three-party Greenland Salmon Conservation Agreement between ASF, NASF, and KNAPK (the Greenland fisheries union) is outside of the NASCO process and creates incentives for fishers to reduce their harvest of Atlantic salmon to subsistence levels. The 12-year agreement has established a 20-t (6000 salmon) annual target.

“We will continue to work with our partners to execute the agreement. ASF urges the member countries of NASCO to keep working with the Greenland government for a lower total allowable harvest, which includes reductions to account for recent overharvests, and to do more to conserve wild salmon in their home countries,” said ASF’s Bill Taylor.

The one-year interim management measure for the Greenland Atlantic salmon fishery adopted at NASCO will expire prior to the 2022 fishing season. It’s likely that negotiations will take place at next year’s NASCO annual meeting in an attempt to reach a multi-year agreement.

Backgrounder on Greenland Agreement, Media Use Image, ASF's 2021 State of the Atlantic Salmon Population Report all available, along with the press release at:
David Boyd, rapporteur spécial des Nations Unies sur les droits de l'homme et l'environnement, prendra la parole lors d'un événement en ligne pour lancer la campagne citoyenne pour une Charte des droits environnementaux au Nouveau-Brunswick.

L'événement aura lieu le 2 juin 2021 à 15 h HNA. Inscrivez-vous ici :

Basé à Vancouver, le Dr Boyd est l'un des plus grands experts mondiaux en droit et en politique de l'environnement, reconnu par l'ONU pour son travail sur les lois et les politiques qui construisent un avenir écologiquement durable et juste pour les Canadiens et les habitants de la planète.

Le Dr Boyd sera le conférencier principal du Caucus des droits environnementaux du Nouveau-Brunswick, qui lance une campagne visant à mieux protéger la santé des enfants et notre environnement.
Un petit groupe de citoyens dévoués étudie les droits environnementaux des enfants depuis 2009 et publie maintenant son projet de Charte des droits environnementaux au public et aux membres de l'Assemblée législative du Nouveau-Brunswick pour examen.

L'avant-projet de loi se concentre sur le droit des enfants à un environnement sain et durable. Ils exhortent les législateurs à faire de ce document une loi afin de consacrer ces droits pour les enfants et tous les Néo-Brunswickois à l'avenir.
Les enfants sont beaucoup plus vulnérables que les adultes aux dommages environnementaux et le Nouveau-Brunswick a l'obligation, en vertu de la Convention des Nations Unies relative aux droits de l'enfant, de garantir certains droits et libertés, y compris un environnement sain.

L'exposition des enfants aux contaminants présents dans l'air, l'eau, le sol, les aliments et les produits de consommation est proportionnellement beaucoup plus importante que celle des adultes :
  • Les enfants ont des voies d'exposition supplémentaires par le placenta et le lait maternel ;
  • Proportionnellement au poids corporel, les enfants boivent plus d'eau, mangent plus de nourriture et respirent plus d'air que les adultes ;
  • La physiologie des enfants est moins développée pour métaboliser et excréter les contaminants ; et,
  • Les enfants ont tendance à être plus actifs, à explorer leur environnement par voie orale et à jouer plus bas sur le sol où les contaminants se déposent.

Participez à l'événement, écoutez le Dr David Boyd et voyez comment vous pouvez nous aider à travailler ensemble pour que le droit des enfants et de tous les Néo-Brunswickois à un environnement sain et durable soit inscrit dans la loi.

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Pour plus d’information, veuillez contacter :
Denise Melanson,

Traditional Land of Wabanaki People/FrederictonNew Brunswick’s leading conservation groups are calling for new laws and regulations to protect wetlands in the wake of the tragic draining of the wetland at Ferris Street Forest and Wetland Nature Preserve in Fredericton.

In a letter sent to Ministers Mike Holland, Jill Green and Gary Crossman, the Nature Trust of New Brunswick, Conservation Council of New Brunswick, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society-NB Chapter, and Nature NB say the current regulatory regime fails to protect wetlands.

On Thursday, May 27, the groups launched a campaign inviting New Brunswickers to sign on to their letter for stronger wetland protections. 

New Brunswick’s outdated approach was developed by policy-makers who lacked the evidence of how important wetlands are for protecting nature and our communities. It leaves wetlands at risk from business as usual practices—such as poorly planned subdivisions and industry activity, especially by forestry companies in the Crown forest—and the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss in New Brunswick.

The groups say it is time for a wetland protection law—not a wetland alteration permit system. 

The letter outlines several recommendations to modernize wetland protection in the province, including:

  • DTI review all of its current WAWA permits with respect to impact on all wetlands larger than two hectares and release the results of that review;
  • All PSWs (Provincially Significant Wetlands) on Crown Land be designated as part of the areas protected under the 2020 Nature Legacy program and commit now to develop a plan to protect 25 per cent of N.B.’s nature over the next five years;
  • The Clean Water Act be reviewed, specifically for modernizing coastal areas protection by updating the 2002 provincial Coastal Areas Protection Policy and providing it weight, in law, a regulation promised in the 2018 NB Water Strategy; 
  • The 2014 Crown Forest Agreements be revised as soon as possible this year to adequately protect wetlands, streams and rivers on public land by increasing buffer zones and identifying no cut/no road construction in wetland areas and all sensitive areas, including the habitat for N.B. endangered species such as Atlantic salmon, the Canada warbler, wood turtles and others;

Read the full letter and recommendations here.

Who we are:

The Nature Trust of New Brunswick is a charitable land conservation organization established in 1987 dedicated to preserving the province’s ecologically significant landscapes. To date, the Nature Trust has conserved over 9,000 acres in 67 beautiful and diverse nature preserves in New Brunswick. Our mission is to conserve areas in New Brunswick that are ecologically significant, to establish nature preserves that remain protected forever, to steward the preserves through a network of volunteers and supporters, and to engage with the public on the importance of land conservation, New Brunswick’s natural heritage, biodiversity, and species at risk. Visit website.

Conservation Council of New Brunswick established in 1969 and remains the province’s leading public advocate for environmental protection. A member of the UN’s Global 500 Roll of Honour, we work to find practical solutions to help families and citizens, educators, governments and businesses protect the air we breathe, the water we drink, the precious marine ecosystem and the land, including the forest, that support us. Visit website

Nature NB is a provincial conservation organization comprised of a dozen naturalist clubs from across the province and hundreds of members. Our mission is to celebrate, conserve and protect New Brunswick’s natural heritage through education, networking and collaboration. Visit website.

Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society – NB Chapter is part of the nation-wide charity CPAWS, with a mission to work with governments, Indigenous peoples and communities to protect more of Canada’s publicly managed lands and water – for the benefit of both wildlife and people. We work cooperatively with all parts of society to find solutions to nature conservation challenges and to connect people to the nature that supports us all. CPAWS-NB has led public campaigns that have resulted in over 150,000 hectares of new protected areas in New Brunswick. Visit website.

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Renata Woodward, CEO, Nature Trust of New Brunswick:; 506-261-1260

Lois Corbett, Executive Director, Conservation Council of New Brunswick:; 506-238-5292

Roberta Clowater, Executive Director, Canadian Parks and WIlderness Society – NB Chapter:; 506-452-9902

Vanessa Roy-McDougall, Executive Director, Nature NB:; 506-459-4209

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Afin de réduire les émissions de gaz à effet de serre (GES) liées au transport routier, le Groupe de développement durable du Pays de Cocagne (GDDPC) a demandé au gouvernement provincial à trois reprises depuis décembre 2019 d’investir dans la décentralisation des services de buanderie des hôpitaux en utilisant les revenus de la taxe sur le carbone, mais nos demandes ont été ignorées. Cliquez ici pour lire le communiqué de presse complet.
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