GM salmon project for P.E.I. will face environmental assessment

Minister says firm must abide by evironmental protection rules at its salmon-growing operation

The federal government says a proposal to produce the world's first genetically modified salmon for human consumption in P.E.I. will face environmental assessment.

In a letter to a group of environmental lobby groups, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says any plan by AquaBounty Technologies to manufacture or grow out its AquAdvantage salmon at Rollo Bay, P.E.I., would be subject to all the requirements under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act.

Mark Butler of Halifax's Ecology Action Centre says he wants to see a scientific assessment of the environmental risks before genetically modified salmon is produced for sale in Canada.

Butler says his group and others are worried about the risk of genetically modified fish escaping and breeding with wild Atlantic salmon.

In June, the P.E.I. government approved AquaBounty's request to begin construction of the proposed land-based facility at Rollo Bay, prompting opponents to seek clarity from the federal government.

Officials with AquaBounty did not immediately respond to requests for comment Wednesday.


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