Yukon First Nations Advocates Push for Chinook Salmon Protection

Delegates at a recent parliamentary committee told lawmakers challenges faced by Yukon River chinook salmon are manifold and in need of swift action, writes CBC.

The delegates warned of a looming extinction and said that teeming hatchery pinks are outcompeting chinook for food in the ocean, mining and hydroelectric dams are killing the fish and destroying their habitat, all while the territorial and the federal governments pass the buck to each other.

Nicole Tom, the chief of the Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation, says that the extinction of the entire species is guaranteed without stronger efforts. 

The number of chinook salmon swimming back into Canadian waters have been declining for decades, and the past two years have seen some of the worst numbers recorded in Yukon River.

One of the central problems affecting salmon is mining, says Tom, with "deadly contaminates that would go into Dome Creek, into White River, into the Yukon River."

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