In June some 40 salmon fishing organizations and observers to the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization called on the Norwegian Prime Minister to protect fjords from mine waste. NASCO NGO observers note that Norway is the only country within the organization that allows for mine waste to be dumped into the ocean, an increasingly incomprehensible position given the country’s leadership role on the High Level Panel for Sustainable Ocean Economy. The letter states, “In order to maintain credibility when leading this international ocean panel, one can simply not allow a planned pollution of the beautiful fjords in Norway.”
The recent inclusion of Atlantic Salmon on the IUCN’s Red List of Endangered Species adds to the urgent need to halt plans for submarine tailings disposal in Norway’s fjords. According to the NGO observers in their letter, “Migration in saltwater is an important phase for Atlantic salmon, which need healthy ecosystems in the estuaries and fjords for their early marine feeding. A seabed covered in tailings does not provide for this.”
Help allies in Norway protect a National Salmon Fjord from Nordic Mining’s plans to dump millions of tonnes of waste from the Engebø mine. Send an email to U.S. company, KRONOS, a key financial backer of the project, to demand it cut ties with Nordic Mining.
Read the full letter from NASCO NGO observers below.
During 6-9 of June, all the jurisdictions of North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization (NASCO), met in Edinburgh and showed concern for the future of wild Atlantic salmon. Some 40 accredited NGOs were represented at the meeting and we especially called for all parties and jurisdictions to commit to actions to protect wild salmon in their home water.
“Putting sustainability at the heart of ocean management is essential for protection, production and prosperity that benefits people, nature and the economy”. This is a quote from The High Level Panel for Sustainable Ocean Economy, where the prime minister of Norway is co-chair. To maintain credibility in this position, you simply cannot allow a planned pollution of the beautiful fjords of Norway. Norway is the only nation within the NASCO community that allows disposal of tailings from mining operations in the ocean. Two new mining projects are on the verge of commencing with submarine tailings in Førdefjorden and Repparfjorden, through which salmon from some of the finest rivers in Norway migrate.
This potential appalling pollution must be stopped while there still is a chance! The Atlantic salmon in Norway entered the red list of endangered species last fall and is already under severe pressure from several other man-made impact factors, particularly salmon aquaculture. This cannot continue. Migration in saltwater is an important phase for Atlantic salmon, which need healthy ecosystems in the estuaries and fjords for their early marine feeding. A seabed covered in tailings does not provide for this.
We appeal to the prime minister of Norway to make his mark as a leading figure in the sustainable ocean management of the future. The planned submarine tailings in Førdefjorden and Repparfjorden must be stopped, and no new mining projects with this disposal method should be allowed in the future. We also appeal to investors and financial institutions worldwide not to invest in mining projects that dispose mining waste in salmon fjords.
“Give it 100%” is the slogan of The High Level Panel for Sustainable Ocean Economy, referring to a 100% effort to meet the urgency of the intense and growing pressures on the ocean. The Atlantic salmon must surely be a part of this as an iconic natural indicator to the health of both rivers and oceans.
This situation is urgent. For the sake of wild Atlantic salmon and all they represent, say NO to mining waste in Norway’s fjords!
Paul Knight and Steve Sutton
Co-chairs NASCO NGO Observers