U.S., Canada sign salmon treaty
BY DAVID BRISCOE
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The United States and Canada signed an agreement today
aimed at protecting and building up dwindling Pacific salmon supplies.
The Pacific Salmon Treaty, agreed to after five years of tough negotiations
and years of disputes between U.S. and Canadian fishermen, revises a 1985
agreement to rebuild wild salmon runs and ensure that both sides get a fair
share of the catch.
Thomas R. Pickering, acting secretary of state while Madeleine Albright is in
New York for meetings on Kosovo, and Canadian Ambassador Raymond Chtien
signed the accord at formal ceremonies in the State Department's Treaty Room.
The treaty establishes two regional funds managed by both countries to
improve fisheries management and enhance cross-border scientific cooperation.
``The agreement represents a critical step in the administration's long-term
strategy for restoring salmon in the Pacific Northwest,'' the State
U.S. negotiators included representatives of the State Department, White
House, 24 Indian tribes and the states of Alaska, Washington and Oregon.
The salmon dispute reached a low point in 1997 when Canadian fishing boats
prevented an Alaska state ferry from departing Prince Rupert, British
Columbia, after Canadian fishermen claimed Americans were taking too many
The deal divides up salmon among the two countries' fishermen only after
ensuring that enough remain to reproduce healthy and growing runs, especially
of wild chinook, sockeye and coho salmon. Some salmon runs are being listed
as endangered or threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.
The agreement has the effect of reducing Canada's catch of chinook salmon
bound for streams in Washington, Oregon and Idaho, while giving Canada more
of the Fraser River sockeye salmon that have been harvested by Washington and
Alaska has agreed to reduce its chinook and coho salmon catches.
Officials on both sides have declared the agreement is in their mutual
The agreement calls for the United States to spend $140 million to restore
salmon habitat and for other steps to rebuild stocks. More than $30 million
additional is expected to be needed to buy out the licenses of U.S. fishermen
who will lose their Fraser sockeye harvest.
Trout Unlimited, a fish conservation group, has endorsed the agreement with
reservations. Some conservationists fear it aims too much at increasing the
number of fish so more can be caught rather than conserving the natural
7/1/99 (Associated Press)
Dean Staff Kanata On. Canada
dstaff at echelon.ca http://www.echelon.ca/dstaff/
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