Investigative diver Tavish Campbell is streaming live video from an underwater camera he’s placed at a Tofino fish processing plant that shows red discharge flowing into the ocean.

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation meets with Tofino salmon farm in wake of ‘blood water’ video

“All parties are now working together to voluntarily make some changes and improvements…”

A viral video has a Tofino fish processing plant considering changes to its wastewater processes.

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation representatives met with local aquaculture company Creative Salmon on Dec. 6 in the wake of a video posted online of bloody wastewater being released into the ocean off Tofino by a Lions Gate Fisheries processing plant that processes Creative’s Organic Chinook Salmon.

The video was shot by wilderness photographer and diver Tavish Campbell and the footage spread rapidly throughout social media, prompting Dec. 6’s meeting between the Tla-o-qui-aht and Creative Salmon.

“We discussed some changes that were made immediately to significantly reduce the amount of water and particulates being discharged and had a tour of the plant,” says Tla-o-qui-aht Natural Resources Director Saya Masso. “We also discussed the various options and technologies available for treatment of effluent. This is an important issue for Tla-o-qui-aht and we will work with Creative Salmon as they continue to research next steps and treatment options.”

Creative Salmon has a protocol agreement with the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation and Masso said the meeting illustrated why that agreement is so important.

“The protocol calls for respectful and ongoing dialogue on issues,” he said. “That is exactly what should happen and what is happening here.”

Creative released a statement Friday morning that explained Lions Gate Fisheries operates under a provincial permit, which authorizes wastewater to be screened and discharged.

“All parties are now working together to voluntarily make some changes and improvements to procedures at the plant to address public concern,” said Creative Salmon General Manager Tim Rundle. “We are always open to talk constructively about what is happening and to address questions about our operations.”

A Creative spokesperson said the wastewater is screened through a fine mesh, but the permit does not require an additional treatment process.

“That being said, we are now voluntarily looking at bringing on some kind of treatment process,” the spokesperson said. “The timeline on that will depend on the available technologies and the companies who provide them et cetera.”

Local environmental organization Clayoquot Action claims to have obtained samples from a school of rock fish reportedly seen feeding near the wastewater discharge that tested positive for Piscine Reovirus.

“The short-term solution to this blood water discharge is to turn off the tap—this discharge must be halted immediately,” a statement from Clayoquot Action read. “The longer term solution is to remove salmon farms from the pristine waters of the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, and the whole BC coast.”

The Creative spokesperson declined to comment on Clayoquot Action’s test results because they had not seen them.

“What we can say is that our fish are very healthy,” the spokesperson said.

Just Posted

Algae bloom killing farmed fish on Vancouver Island’s West Coast

DFO says four Cermaq Canada salmon farms affected, fish not infectious

New vice principal loving life at Ucluelet Elementary School

“I’m enjoying getting to know all the teachers and staff.”

‘Finding Solitude’ film premieres in Tofino and Ucluelet

“This film is about protecting our lands.”

School District 70 proposes new school names, asks for public feedback

Board of education suggests new names for the district and two of its schools

Washout brings delays to drivers heading in and out of Tofino-Ucluelet

West Coast commuters are facing delays Tuesday morning.

VIDEO: ‘Climate emergency’ is Oxford’s 2019 Word of the Year

Other words on the shortlist included ‘extinction,’ ‘climate denial’ and ‘eco-anxiety’

Canucks erupt with 5 power-play goals in win over Nashville

Vancouver ends three-game slide with 6-3 triumph over Predators

Nanaimo man caught with more than 200,000 child porn images to be sentenced

Crown says Aaron Macrae recorded video of children on buses and at his workplace

Vancouver Island hunters may have harvested deer in area known for chronic wasting disease

Conservation officers make urgent request to public for any information

65-million-year-old triceratops makes its debut in Victoria

Dino Lab Inc. is excavating the fossilized remains of a 65-million-year-old dinosaur

B.C. widow suing health authority after ‘untreatable’ superbug killed her husband

New Public Agency Health report puts Canadian death toll at 5,400 in 2018

Changes to B.C. building code address secondary suites, energy efficiency

Housing Minister Selina Robinson says the changes will help create more affordable housing

Security guard at Kamloops music festival gets three years for sexually assaulting concertgoer

Shawn Christopher Gray walked the woman home after she became seperated from her friends, court heard

Most Read