And now for some good news

And now for some good news r1 ... Subscribe to this newsletter narwhal logo BECOME A MEMBER Coastal Shellfish staff lift a lantern net of scallops out of the water. Sometimes we all need an uplifting story — and I promise we have a good one for you this week.

Let me introduce you to Coastal Shellfish, a sustainable, Indigenous-owned and operated company based in Prince Rupert, B.C.

Prince Rupert was once a bustling hub for the seafood industry. Nowadays, locals describe that economy as “a shadow of its former self.”

So when the Great Bear Rainforest Act came into effect in 2016, nine Coastal First Nations saw an opportunity to act. The agreement prompted governments, philanthropists and conservation groups to pool funds to create a trust for investments in sustainable development projects. Coastal Shellfish was the first initiative to receive support.

“Our goal has been fairly ambitious to produce … an economy of inclusion for Indigenous communities in coastal British Columbia,” says Michael Uehara, Coastal Shellfish’s president and CEO. “And quite frankly, nothing says inclusion like ownership.”

The company decided to farm scallops because of their sustainable benefits: the process of farming scallops in the ocean sees the shellfish clean the water as they grow. Plus, the scallops get their food from the natural environment, in turn posing little ecological risk.

It wasn’t easy to get the technical operations just right — scallop larvae are extremely sensitive — but now that they’ve managed to increase the survival rate, business has taken off.

“A couple of years ago, I said that once we started selling scallops live in Prince Rupert, we would become the live scallop capital of North America by virtue of the fact that nobody else is doing it,” Michael told The Narwhal’s Northwest B.C. reporter Matt Simmons.

Now, those aspirations are becoming a reality: Coastal Shellfish’s scallops can be found in restaurants in Vancouver as well as right at home in Prince Rupert. And we can confirm their top-notch quality first-hand: “They’re delicious,” says Matt, who shared this snap of himself preparing to dig into some scallops at Fukasaku restaurant, the very first local joint to directly source their product.
matt simmons eating scallop The promising early success of the scallop operation has the company setting its sights on farming other species, including kelp and sea urchins.

Brian Kingzett, a marine biologist and vice-president of Coastal Shellfish, distills the vision this way: “The idea is to use what we’re doing with the scallops as the backbone of rebuilding this Indigenous-driven seafood economy.”

Boosting food security, sustaining the natural ecosystem and reviving the local economy — all spearheaded by Coastal First Nations. What’s not to love?

Take care and shuck your shellfish,

Arik Ligeti
Audience Engagement Editor
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

P.S. The B.C. election is underway — and we’re keeping a close eye on the campaign. Be sure to bookmark our election topic page for the latest coverage of what the vote means for environment issues in the province.
BECOME A NARWHAL This week in The Narwhal

An unexpected outcome of the Great Bear Rainforest agreement: tasty sustainable scallops

Coastal Shellfish processing plant Prince Rupert By Matt Simmons

Indigenous-owned Coastal Shellfish is breathing new life into Prince Rupert's seafood economy, reviving a former fish processing plant and offering jobs to locals. Read more.

RBC becomes first major Canadian bank to refuse to fund oil drilling in Arctic refuge

Arctic fox feasts on carcass of caribou in mountains of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge By Julien Gignac
“We are looking to all major banks in Canada to come into the sunlight with RBC,” says Vuntut Gwitchin Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm. Read more.

B.C. eyes opportunities to secure emissions credits for ‘lower carbon’ LNG, metals

John Horgan announces CleanBC plan in 2018 By Ainslie Cruickshank
Research commissioned by the B.C. government and a business group compares the greenhouse gas emissions intensity of the province’s natural resources to emissions from competing jurisdictions. Read more.

In a world that needs metals, how can we mine more responsibly?

open-pit mining By Ryan Stuart

Deer Horn Capital is seeking one of the newest and most highly regarded global mining standard certificates for its tellurium project in B.C. — a first for Canadian exploration companies. Read more.

The Narwhal in the world Last week, we published a fascinating tale on blue carbon by our very own Stephanie Wood. Steph’s story was the final installment in our eight-part Carbon Cache series detailing nature-based climate solutions, and we’re downright giddy about all the love it nabbed on the Twitterverse. Thanks for the kind words, Simon and Charlotte! You can go here to learn all about blue carbon’s capabilities. When you need to get somewhere in a hurry but make a point of forwarding our newsletter sign-up page to your friends first. r33

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