On the West Coast, few subjects are as controversial as salmon farming. Every week, new studies raise alarming questions about the safety of farmed fish and the risk farms pose to the environment. But federal, provincial and state governments continue to support expansion of fish farms all along the coast. People are justifiably confused.
Just what is the case against this new ocean-based agri-biz, and how concerned should we be? A Stain Upon the Sea is an indispensable critique of fish farming practices used in British Columbia and abroad, featuring an all-star cast of contributors. Journalist Stephen Hume examines the industry through the eyes of the Nuxalk and Heiltsuk Nations and incorporates case studies from Ireland and Alaska. Historians Betty Keller and Rosella M. Leslie explain the development of the industry in BC, from small family operations to large chain farms owned by a handful of multinational conglomerates. Biologist Alexandra Morton analyzes the biology of sea lice in the pink salmon runs in the Broughton Archipelago. Former federal employee Otto Langer gives an in-depth account of the bureaucratic nightmare that exempted the industry from environmental review. And scientist Don Staniford analyzes the chemical stew that farmed fish are raised in and the health risk this poses to humans. A Stain Upon the Sea is a must-read for anyone concerned with the quality of the food they eat and the environmental health of the planet.