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Updated: Fri, 13 Dec 2013 23:30:09 GMT | By CBC News, cbc.ca

Fisheries library's closure in Winnipeg worries scientist



CBC

CBC

At least one aquatic scientist in Winnipeg is raising concerns about the federal government's decision to close an established library dedicated to fisheries.

The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) is shutting down its Eric Marshall Aquatic Research Library by the end of this month.

The library is located at the University of Manitoba at the Freshwater Institute, which has been considered a world-class hub for research into the underwater world.

"They had literally everything," said Gordon Goldsborough, an associate professor of biological sciences at the University of Manitoba.

"I was sad when I heard the library was going to close because it is such an important part of, well, certainly my education and, to a large extent … the fisheries discipline in Canada."

The library is one of seven DFO libraries that are being closed down. All the original materials from those libraries will be spread among four remaining libraries in Canada.

A department official told CBC News that it's just adapting to the times, as most of the material it provides to users these days is in digital form.

Students and researchers can still borrow non-digital holdings by placing an order and waiting for their requested material to arrive from libraries in British Columbia, Ottawa or Nova Scotia, the spokesperson said.

But some scientists told CBC News the decision is another sign the federal government does not support scientific research, especially if that research butts heads with its economic agenda.

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