Posts in Category: My Blog

Community Initiated Solutions to BC Conflict Gravel

Friends of the Chilliwack River Valley are calling on all levels of government to boycott Conflict Gravel operations across BC. According to the Minister of State Randy Hawes, 70% of the gravel produced in BC is purchased by governments. We’re asking that these elected officials stop the purchase of gravel from pits located in communities where local residents are opposed to these operations. We’re asking that elected officials listen to their constituents and vote with their dollars.

Friends of the Chilliwack River Valley are asking communities from Texada Island to Revelstoke to demand that their MLA’s, municipality and regional representatives put an end to Conflict Gravel as a first step to resolving Conflict Mining across BC.

Proposed community initiated amendments to the BC Mines Act. This Act dates back to 1858. and is the cause of conflict throughout the province. The community proposed amendments will remove gravel from the special provisions for minerals and treat gravel more like forestry than diamonds.

Gravel mining should respect FRPA provisions for Old Growth Management Areas and Species At Risk WHA’s. This is the first crack in the old Act that we hope to continue to promote an end to Conflict Mining in BC. In conjunction with a new Mines Act BC needs to join 8 other provinces and pass a Species At Risk Act.

The draft amendments are called the Aggregate Supply Plan ASP. and are meant to counter the provinces proposed new gravel mining rules called the Aggregate Pilot Project. APP. Almost unbelievably the BC Liberals APP proposal has GREEN ZONES that will allow for open pit gravel mines that do not even require a permit.

By supporting the community initiated ASP we can stop the APP which we hope will be the last Natural Resource Extraction proposal that has does not have an environmental clause. APP provides no environmental protection.

Check out: BC Conflict Gravel Update
Read: ‘Positive alternative’ to regional gravel plan


Wild Salmon Have Genetic Signature of Fish Farm Virus

Dangerous to human health by transmission

January 20, 2010 – Though the scientists thought pathogens were a big negative factor, more science is needed to absolutely nail these down. But it seems to be — wait for it — fish farm issues, say, sea lice, and viruses. Environmentalist Alexandra Morton has asked the commission to compel the farms to release data that they have been withholding. It is the virus situation that is the nightmare scenario: farmed Chinook salmon likely passed a salmon leukemia retrovirus to the farmed Atlantics and they infected the returning sockeye adults. This is DFO research from Dr. Kristina Miller. The sockeye managed the long swim upstream only to die prior to spawning.

Another scientist, Michael Kent, studying viral transmission, reviewed work that has shown this fast mutating bug can infect dogs, sheep and humans. This is the nightmare. Make sure you cook your Fraser sockeye well, and send a letter to Gail Shea saying: fund more of Miller’s research, toute de suite.

This is a fascinating, heavy crunching science report. If you read only one table in your investigation of this issue, let it be E-2. This table summarizes all the research for or against a possible explanation and will inform your understanding of salmon science for the rest of your fishing days: Read more

Water Act Must Protect Our Public and Environmental Rights

The provincial government is “modernizing” our Water Act, calling the new act the Water Sustainability Act (WSA). A round of public consultation was held last spring when the government received over 900 submissions. Based on those submissions they have developed a brief policy document which you can download here.

The second round of public consultation has just been extended to March 14. There are many insightful comments on the blog site that will assist you in understanding public concerns regarding the purposed policy. You can read others’ comments and post your own on the living water smart blog, http://blog.gov.bc.ca/livingwatersmart/

Comments are also accepted by fax to 250 356-1202, by phone at 250 387-4734 and by mail addressed to:

Water Act Modernization, Ministry of Environment, Water Protection and Sustainability Branch, PO Box 9362, Stn Prov Govt, Victoria, BC V8W 9M2

Don’t hesitate to comment on the blog with your concerns. One or two lines is fine. It is imperative that the government is aware of how many citizens and groups are interested in the true protection of our water in BC. Commenting will also put your name on the government’s email list for further developments in this process.

Read more: Water Sustainability


Military Spending Leaves Environment Defenseless

ACTION ALERT: Send Harper a message about proposed budget cuts to Environment Canada. News agencies are reporting that the Harper government is planning a $222-million or 20% reduction in spending at Environment Canada.

This includes a $141 million cut to climate change and clean air initiatives, as well as a $19.5-million cut to a federal action plan dealing with contaminated federal sites, and about $3-million in reductions for compliance promotion and enforcement for wildlife and pollution.

Meanwhile, in 2010 to 2011, Environment Canada’s program activities amount to just over one billion dollars while National Defence spending is over twenty billion. This is further evidence that the Harper government is out of step with the views of Canadians.

According to recent Environics poll, seventy-one percent of Canadians strongly or somewhat agreed with the statement, “money spent on wars and the military would all be better spent on efforts that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the impacts of climate change.”

Price tag for F-35 Fighter Jets will approach $30-billion, budget watchdog warns.

Liberal defence critic Dominic LeBlanc said. “To put this in perspective, $30-billion is equivalent to $1,000 for every man, woman and child in Canada, and equals the entire federal government’s annual spending on health care.”

Send an email to: Prime Minister Harper, Environment Minister Peter Kent and the leaders of the opposition.