Canada kept detection of salmon virus secret, Craig Welch, Seattle Times environment reporter, Nov. 30/11
“A decade before this fall’s salmon-virus scare, a Canadian government researcher said she found a similar virus in more than 100 wild fish from Alaska to Vancouver Island.
“Canadian officials never told the public or scientists in the United States about those tests — not even after evidence of the virus discovered in October was treated as an international emergency, according to documents and emails obtained by The Seattle Times.
“The researcher’s work surfaced only this week after she sought and was denied permission by a Canadian official to try to have her old data published in a scientific journal…”
Three weeks ago I wrote When up is down and down is up, about a press conference at which Canadian Food Inspection Agency claimed the Infectious Salmon Anemia virus outbreak was not happening in British Columbia. According to Ivan Doumenc, the government’s message degraded quickly under intense questioning by reporters from the Seattle Times and the Yukon News along with Damien Gillis of The Common Sense Canadian.
Where has the Vancouver Sun been on this story? In November, part-time environmental reporter Larry Pynn wrote about marijuana, bears in garbage and float plane safety but not about ISA. Food reporter Randy Shore covered beer and chocolate for the Sun and found time in his blog to repeat uncritically reassurances from CFIA and fish farm flack Mary Ellen Walling that all is well.
Today, the Sun website re-publishes Craig Welch’s Seattle report but Postmedia newspapers have largely ignored ISA and threats to wild salmon and other coastal fisheries. Had Seattle Times not led the way on this Canadian story, discussion of it in Canada would be left largely to the alternative media. Instead of journalistic balance and inquiry, from Postmedia, we get advocacy favouring unrestricted expansion of fish farms and elimination of environmental oversight and suppression of scientific inquiries.