Parliamentary Secretary Vance Badawey highlights Great Lakes Fishery Commission investments in Budget 2022

News release

April 21, 2022

Port Colborne, Ontario - The Great Lakes are critically important to Canadians, to our environment, and to our economy. Through Budget 2022: A plan to Grow Our Economy and Make Life More Affordable, the Government of Canada is making strategic investments to protect our freshwater fishery resources, the economies, and people who rely upon them.

Today, on behalf of the Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, Vance Badawey, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous Services and Member of Parliament for Niagara Centre, highlighted an investment of $44.9 million over five years to support delivery and coordination of science research, fisheries management, and invasive sea lamprey control activities. Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) delivers the Canadian portion of the Commission’s sea lamprey control effort in the Great Lakes.

Through the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, the Commission’s secretariat, multiple provincial and state governments, agencies and advisors, Canada and the US work closely together to control sea lamprey populations, conduct scientific research, and protect the sustainability of the Great Lakes fishery.

The Great Lakes contain almost 20 per cent of the world’s surface freshwater, are shared by Canada and the US, are the basis for billions of dollars in economic activity, and are vital to the well-being of communities on both sides of the border. It is crucial that we work alongside our domestic and US partners to protect our Great Lakes and the aquatic life that depend on them. 

Quotes

“The Great Lakes are a unique and exceptional feature of Canada’s geography – environmentally, economically and culturally. This investment in Budget 2022 to support the work in partnership with the Great Lakes Fishery Commission shows our Government’s commitment to protect the health of the Great Lakes fishery now and for future generations.”

The Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

“The Great Lakes Fishery Commission is a tremendous example of how Canada and the United States can work together to protect the Great Lakes. Our Government is proud to support the work of the Commission as part of our international efforts to manage the serious risks from sea lamprey, and other threats to fish stocks, ecosystems and the water quality in the Great Lakes. This investment is a critical first step, and we look forward to continuing with our domestic and binational Great Lakes partnerships into the future.”

Vance Badawey, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous Services and Member of Parliament for Niagara Centre

“The Great Lakes Fishery Commission would like to thank Mr. Badawey, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Government of Canada for the Budget 2022 commitment of a $9 million annual increase in Commission’s allocation. By fully funding this important treaty mandate at $19.6 million, Canada has demonstrated by its actions, a steadfast support for the Great Lakes, and to the binational partnerships that are so vital to keeping the Great Lakes great”

Jim McKane, Vice-Chair of the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, and head of the Commission’s Canadian Section

Quick facts

  • The Great Lakes Fishery Commission was established by the 1954 Convention on Great Lakes Fisheries between the United States of America and Canada with the objective to protect and sustain the Great Lakes fishery, specifically combating invasive sea lamprey, conducting scientific research, and managing the Great Lakes fishery.

  • The Great Lakes Fishery Commission’s secretariat is located in Ann Arbour, Michigan. Along with  supporting scientific research and coordinating binational fishery management efforts across the Great Lakes, the GLFC carries out sea lamprey control activities, including DFO’s Sea Lamprey Control Program.

  • Budget 2022: A Plan to Grow Our Economy and Make Life More Affordable proposes to provide $44.9 million over five years to Fisheries and Oceans Canada, starting in 2022-23, and $9.0 million ongoing to meet Canada’s funding share in support of bi-national work under the Great Lakes Fishery Commission.

  • Sea lamprey is an invasive fish species introduced to the Great Lakes in the 19th century. It was first documented in Lake Ontario in 1835 and was established in all five Great Lakes by 1938 causing catastrophic damage to native lake trout and whitefish populations by 1950. The coordinated Canada-US control program is delivered in a border blind approach, suppressing the lamprey population by about 90% from pre-control populations.

  • An individual adult sea lamprey will kill up to 40 pounds of fish over its 12-18 month feeding period; therefore, any increase in sea lamprey numbers will have devastating impacts on Great Lakes fisheries.  Ongoing control is needed to maintain successful suppression.

Associated links

Contacts

Claire Teichman
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
604-679-5462
Claire.Teichman@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
613-990-7537
Media.xncr@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

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