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September 3, 2011

Dropping the Disease Bomb

Dropping the Disease Bomb!

A watershed moment occurred this week when damning disease information was made public by the Cohen Commission.   In the fight against salmon farming, the ripple effect could be as powerful as the bouncing bombs dropped by the 'Dambusters' in the Second World War.

However, this information is still not online via the Cohen Commission's web-site.  In the spirit of transparency and freedom of information, the Superheroes 4 Salmon have posted it online here for the world to see for themselves:
Exhibit #1549 - 217 (BCP002864) - download here

Exhibit #1549 - 206 (BCP002850) - download here

The disease databases identify specific companies and sites for the first time.   This information is more detailed and incendiary than the disease information released on August 23.

The decision to make this information public caused heated debate last week (August 26) when the Province's lawyer, representing Her Majesty the Queen, filed an objection to their publication.
“Our concern is if the province is known to give out confidential information, and not try to protect it, then voluntary disclosure could stop occurring. And this is a concern because there have been outbreaks in the province before, (for example), avian influenza,” provincial lawyer Tara Callan told the inquiry.
However, on Monday (August 29) the Province changed their mind and withdrew their objection.  The Vancouver Observer reported (August 30):
"Yesterday, in a historic moment for the coast of British Columbia, the lawyer representing the Province of B.C. at the Cohen Commission retracted her objection to the release of salmon farm disease data and the data became public.  Alexandra Morton spoke of the importance of this once-classified data being released through the Cohen Commission, and why she thinks salmon farms have become the gatekeeper to the Fraser sockeye survival" (Read more via Alexandra Morton's blog).
Damien Gillis, writing in The Common Sense Canadian (August 30), said:
"Morton and her team have reviewed over 500,000 documents submitted to the Cohen Commission into disappearing Fraser sockeye over the past year and she would have presented her conclusions to the public sooner, were it not for a confidentiality undertaking she and other Inquiry participants were forced to sign. But as of this week, much of the key evidence upon which Morton is basing her allegations has been officially entered into the record at the Commission and is thus now public.
The final piece fell into place when counsel representing the Clark Government backed down from its opposition to allowing a batch of fish farm disease databases from being entered into the record. The Province's lawyer had made the argument that concealing information from the public was somehow actually in the public interest. But Monday, following a wave of public protest and negative media, Premier Christy Clark backed down and the records became public."
In previous submissions to the Cohen Commission, the BC Salmon Farmers Association had objected to the public disclosure of this disease information claiming that the release would cause "irreparable" and "irrevocable" financial harm (Read more via "Farmed Salmon Confidential: The Cover-Up" and "Cohen's Countdown on Disease Time-Bomb").

Read the disease data online now and judge for yourselves!
Exhibit #1549 - 217 (BCP002864) - download here

Exhibit #1549 - 206 (BCP002850) - download here
And for more damning details on the BC salmon farming industry please come to the Cohen Commission's public hearings next week (September 6, 7 & 8).  On Wednesday (7th) and Thursday (8th), Alexandra Morton will be appearing as a witness alongside Marine Harvest - the world's #1 salmon farming company.

Please get there early (doors open at 9.45am).  According to the Cohen Commission web-site: "With increased interest in the commission’s hearings as they near their conclusion, the commission will be allocating a block of seats in the public gallery to participants with standing for the topic for each day’s hearing. Any additional seating will be on a first-come, first-serve basis".
Please join the 'Justice League for Salmon' outside the Cohen Commission from 9am on Wednesday (7th September) for a powerful and peaceful protest.   Please come unarmed except for the truth.   All Superheroes 4 Salmon pledge allegiance to the 'Peaceful Direct Action Code'.

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