NDP propose tough measures to protect Great Lakes from invasive carp

ELLIOT LAKE – The potential devastation of biodiversity in the Great Lakes from invasive Asian carp requires a multi-prong approach that includes strong regulatory measures according to New Democrat MPs who plan to address that gap with legislation when the House resumes this autumn.

“This legislation provides the government with an opportunity to bring forward measures that will immediately and concretely strengthen the protections in place for the precious resources that are our Great Lakes,” Said New Democrat Great Lakes Critic, Brain Masse (Windsor West). “It would take less than 2 dozen Invasive Carp to find their way into the Great Lakes for a population to become established, they would do irrevocable ecological damage the ecosystems and local economies they help support.”

The New Democrat bill would help protect the lakes’ native species by banning the import of Asian Carp into Canada unless dead and eviscerated — an important new measure since the fish can survive for up to 48 hours out of water. The bill would also enhance powers of CBSA officers to enforce the law and increase minimum fines for violations.

“It is our hope that Conservatives will take a close look at these practical ideas and finally take concrete action,” said Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP, Carol Hughes. “This bill presents a simple, low cost solution for keeping these invasive carp out of the Great Lakes and Canada has to start thinking about regulatory measures as part of our approach.”

New Democrats are working with representatives from the Customs and Immigration Union along with businesses that are based on Great Lakes fishing and angling groups to promote the legislation which will be introduced in the fall session of Parliament.