Local researcher protects our environment

February 28, 2008
BC CAHS Press Release

Dr. Valerie Funk, a local scientist employed at the BC Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences, has recently received the Environment Award at the 9th annual Aquaculture Achievement Awards. This award goes to the person or company who has made the greatest contribution towards environmental sustainability of the Aquaculture industry.

Dr. Valerie Funk’s research has focused on protecting the health of BC Farmed salmon; with initiatives that have included improved diagnostics, stress affects on health and development of novel methods for testing vaccine efficacy which have been employed in lab and field trials. Through this award the industry has recognized the many years of dedication Dr. Funk has brought to this task.

“Dr Funk brings great value to our industry by insuring our fish remain healthy and happy. The health of our farmed fish and their neighboring wild fish is a key piece to both groups of salmon co-exiting successfully in the marine environment”, stated Ian Roberts a fish farmer with Marine Harvest Canada.

Dr. Funk received her PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Victoria and is currently working on a number of collaborative research projects.  Dr. Funk’s research will continue to focus on providing cost-effective and environmentally sound methods for protecting and improving salmon health.

“We are thrilled to witness Dr. Funk win this award, her very focused work has earned the respect of researchers nationally and internationally”, claimed Linda Sams, CEO for the Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences. “Research such as this serves the dual purpose of supporting an important, local economic sector while protecting the environment through sound methods for health management” she said.

The BC Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences exists to advance understanding of British Columbia’s aquatic resources by addressing issues of aquatic animal health and welfare, production, and aquatic food safety, thereby facilitating the economic, social, and environmental sustainability of British Columbia’s aquatic-based research industries and increasing research and service capacity in rural coastal communities.

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