Shatner dives into Canada’s salmon farm debate with profanity-laden campaign

Critics say the farms can spread disease and lice to wild fish
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Canadian actor William Shatner speaks during a Fan Expo Canada in Toronto on Friday, October 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Tijana Martin

Canadian actor William Shatner is wading into the debate over open-pen salmon farming in British Columbia, saying it’s time to stop being polite in an F-word-filled video that calls for an end to the ocean farms.

The video is part of a campaign by the Pacific Wild conservation group that opposes the farms, which must be phased out by 2029 under a plan announced by federal Fisheries Minister Diane Lebouthillier on Wednesday.

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In the YouTube video, the 93-year-old “Star Trek” actor declares his opposition to the farms with numerous apparent profanities, although they are bleeped out.

Shatner then encourages others to adopt similarly frank language to oppose the farms, blaming them for harming wild salmon populations and the environment.

Critics say the farms can spread disease and lice to wild fish although recent science indicates uncertainty over the risks.

Pacific Wild is calling for people to use “un-Canadian” language in letters to political representatives opposing the government’s extension to the farms.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged during the 2019 election that his government would phase out open ocean-pen farming.

The B.C. Salmon Farmers Association has said about 4,700 jobs and more than $1 billion in annual economic activity will be lost if open-pen licences can’t be renewed.

The Canadian Press

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