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Kamloops group seeks water-protection order over proposed Ajax mine PDF Print E-mail
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Posted by Joan Russow   
Monday, 14 August 2017 11:55

Derrick Penner DERRICK PENNER More from Derrick Penner

http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/kamloops-group-seeks-water-protection-order-over-proposed-ajax-minePublished on: August 14, 2017

| Last Updated: August 14, 2017 6:00 AM PDT Inks Lake south of Kamloops would be used for storage water collected from a tailings facility at the proposed Ajax copper-gold mine at Kamloops. The open-pit Ajax copper-gold mine is proposed for a site near Inks Lake south of Kamloops. TBA / PROVINCE A Kamloops community group opposed to mining firm KGHM’s proposed Ajax mine wants the Interior Health Authority to issue a protection order preventing possible water contamination from the facility on the argument an environmental assessment of the project was inadequate. The University of Victoria Environmental Law Centre plans to file filing an application with the Kamloops Public Health Unit Monday requesting the unit’s drinking water officer issue a prevention order regarding potential hazards from the project on behalf of the Kamloops Area Preservation Association.

 

Last Updated on Monday, 14 August 2017 12:09
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Wildlife-management reform is long overdue PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Friday, 11 August 2017 12:56

By Chris Genovali is executive director of Raincoast Conservation Foundation. Large-carnivore expert Paul C. Paquet is Raincoast’s senior scientist.

AUGUST 11, 2017 08:17 AM

The underpinnings of contemporary wildlife management are political and ideological, largely at the expense of wildlife for the presumed benefit of people.

Unsurprisingly, wildlife management in British Columbia is marked by an outdated mindset that primarily views wild animals as a “resource” to be exploited by recreational hunting or as troublesome creatures that need to be killed because their existence conflicts with human endeavours. Saddled by a myopic adherence to the debunked and inaptly named North American model of wildlife conservation, wildlife policy in B.C. is mired in a philosophically and structurally faulty approach.

Simply, wildlife policies are focused on consumption and control, rather than conservation.

As ethicist Michael Nelson and wildlife ecologists John Vucetich, Paul C. Paquet and Joseph Bump note in their critique, North American Model: What’s Flawed, What’s Missing, What’s Needed, the model’s primary tenet, i.e. recreational hunting being central to wildlife conservation, is based upon an inadequate account of history and an inadequate ethic.

Largely ignoring the biology and intrinsic value of all species, the model reinforces the narrow idea that nature is a commodity — a “resource” — owned and used by humans in pursuit of personal interests. This “management” perspective draws its support from — and sustains — the view that humans exist outside of nature, and that other species, apart from their utility for humans, are of little importance in the larger scheme of things. Human dominion and domination over nature are deemed to be the natural order.

Predominantly driven by a recreational hunting agenda, the North American model is informed largely by values, attitudes and atavistic beliefs entrenched in the self-serving fallacy that killing wild animals for sport and control is essential to wildlife conservation.

As explained in the critique, the model relies on a misinterpretation of history in which recreational hunting is disproportionately, and inaccurately, seen as the driver of North American wildlife conservation, while downplaying the contributions of monumental figures such as John Muir and Aldo Leopold, who pioneered broad-based approaches to conservation without focusing on hunting as its primary tool.

The province’s recent proposal to privatize wildlife management illustrates the pernicious effect of the North American model on the mindset of government bureaucrats and politicians. In the run-up to the election, the B.C. Liberals announced plans to implement an extra-governmental agency that would be controlled by recreational hunting groups.

This perverse scheme is the culmination of decades of undue influence by the recreational hunting lobby on the B.C. government; it was also inevitable under the model, where science and ethics are ignored in favour of self-perpetuating myth and anecdote.

With its philosophical roots in the model, the grizzly-bear hunt is an egregious and persistent example of how B.C. wildlife management fails to address ecological, economic and ethical considerations. Using the province’s kill data to determine if B.C.’s grizzly management meets its own objectives, Raincoast Conservation Foundation scientists have found that total kills commonly exceed limits determined by provincial policy. Financial analyses have shown that grizzlies are worth far more alive than dead, and poll after poll indicates a clear majority of British Columbians have judged the recreational hunting of these large carnivores an abhorrent activity.

Considering centuries of human privilege over the needs of the environment, what we need to manage is not wildlife but ourselves. Recognizing that many human activities have damaging effects on biodiversity and ecological communities, what should wildlife management in B.C. look like?

Briefly, Raincoast envisions a compassionate conservation policy based on management for wildlife, as opposed to management of wildlife — a policy that takes into account the health and well-being of individuals and populations. Furthermore, we envision substantially more consideration given to maintaining the integrity of ecological systems upon which species depend.

Although species might continue to exist and suffer long after natural ecological relationships have been altered or destroyed, such impoverished conditions are not sustainable and do not typify healthy environments. Finally, wildlife management needs to emerge from the shadows and adopt practices in keeping with modern science, as well as principles regarding the ethical treatment of animals.

Without a significant shift in how we relate to and interact with wildlife, future generations will look back with stunned dismay at how our society could be so divorced from reality and morality. The hopeful news in B.C. is that with a new government there is the opportunity for positive change and a much more ecologically and ethically informed approach to wildlife management.

Chris Genovali is executive director of Raincoast Conservation Foundation. Large-carnivore expert Paul C. Paquet is Raincoast’s senior scientist.

Last Updated on Sunday, 13 August 2017 01:26
 
Heroes Rising by alexandra Morton PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Monday, 07 August 2017 10:13

Heroes Rising

As I continued to document the viruses spreading from salmon farms like an oil spill, fighting the Minister of Fisheries, Marine Harvest and Cermaq in court for mandatory farm salmon testing for the highly-contagious piscine orthoreovirus, as well defending myself against Marine Harvest’s lawsuit against me for touching their farm with a teaspoon to collect a sample, I got welcome news.

Paul Watson contacted me to say, he was sending research vessel Martin Sheen and crew to work with me again this summer.

Last year we documented the sad state of health of farm salmon and supported the Musgamagw Dzawada’enuxw who served the industry with eviction notices.

I feel my fight to protect wild salmon would be hopeless without the strong First Nation leadership I serve and the incredible help of the crew of the RV Martin Sheen. In my darkest moments I despair at how incredibly hard it is to keep anything alive on this planet and in particular creatures we claim to love.

David Suzuki and Martin Sheen himself turned out to support Traditional Leader Willie Moon and help launch Virus Hunter II the 2017 voyage of the Martin Sheen. On July 30, we set forth.

I believe the only reason salmon farms are still allowed to pollute the waters of BC is because no one can see what is going on in them. Salmon farms operate in remote areas of the coast and they openly resistant to anyone getting close enough see the fish in the pens.

Screen Shot 2017-08-05 at 4.01.01 PM

We have now passed through the Discovery Islands, a region that Justice Bruce Cohen earmarked as particular sensitive habitat for the beleaguered Fraser River sockeye salmon. In 2016 the Fraser sockeye collapsed to the lowest levels since non-indigenous record keeping began. Fisheries and Oceans’ management of these fish is not working. Justice Cohen recommended that the industry cease to operate in the Discovery Islands in 2010 years unless they can prove they are not having greater than minimal impact on the sockeye.

Last Updated on Sunday, 13 August 2017 01:51
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Coalition urges banks to deny financing for Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain PDF Print E-mail
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Posted by Joan Russow   
Monday, 12 June 2017 11:17

Indigenous and environmental groups urge governments to divest from banks that ignore opposition to pipeline

The Canadian Press Last Updated: Jun 12, 2017 7:59 AM MT

Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project is the target of a coalition of interest groups is calling on Canada's six biggest banks and others to back away from funding it.

Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project is the target of a coalition of interest groups is calling on Canada's 

 

A coalition of interest groups is calling on Canada's six biggest banks and others to back away from providing funding for Kinder Morgan Canada's controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

The coalition of 20 Indigenous and environmental groups says in an open letter that it will use its influence to urge local and foreign governments to divest from banks that ignore its opposition to the pipeline.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 04 July 2017 23:04
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B.C. FIRST NATIONS HAVE CLEANER, CHEAPER SUBSTITUTE FOR SITE C HYDRO PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Thursday, 08 June 2017 08:55

 

British Columbia’s First Nations have a plan ready to make up the 1,100 megawatts of generating capacity that may be withdrawn from the province’s forecast supply if the Green and New Democratic Parties succeed in taking office and, as promised, refer the contentious Site C hydro project for review by the BC Utilities Commission, leading to its cancellation.

 

The plan, drafted with First Nations input by Clean Energy BC back in 2014, may need a bit of updating to reflect the plummeting cost of renewable generation. But even back then, said Executive Director Paul Kariya, “we told the B.C. government we think we can do it cheaper.”

Last Updated on Thursday, 08 June 2017 09:00
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Site C Must Be Canceled And A Fair And Just Transition Instituted For Those Jobs Affected By The Cancellation PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Saturday, 03 June 2017 20:57

BY Joan Russow PhD

Global Compliance Research Project

SITE C

 

 

 

The evidence based UBC Report said:

 

We came to the conclusion, looking over 10 different scenarios, that it makes the most economic sense to suspend or cancel Site C while the project is referred to the BC Utilities Commission.”

 “Our analysis indicates that cancelling the Site C project as   of June 30, 2017, would save between $500-million and $1.65-billion, depending on future conditions"

Last Updated on Friday, 09 June 2017 09:15
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Horgan to Hydro: Don’t Sign New Site C Contracts or Evict Residents PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Thursday, 01 June 2017 18:23

By Emma Gilchrist • Thursday, June 1, 2017 - 

B.C.Leader John Horgan has written to B.C.HYDRO CEO Jessica McDonald to urge the crown corporation not to finalize any contracts or evict any residents to make way for the Site C dam until a new government is in place.

“I note that the majority of British Columbians who voted in this election voted for parties that want to see the Site C project reviewed or stopped,” Horgan wrote to McDonald.

Last Updated on Saturday, 03 June 2017 23:07
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Anti-pipeline protesters finish 75-km walk at Kinder Morgan in Burnaby PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Monday, 29 May 2017 19:35

By Denise Ryan Published on: May 28, 2017 | Last Updated: May 28, 2017 5:55 PM 

Hundreds of activists rally to finish a 75 kilometre march at the gates of Kinder Morgan during an Anti-Pipeline walk in Burnaby on Sunday.

Emotions ran high at the Walk 4 the Salish Sea, the culmination of an indigenous-led four-day, 75-kilometre walk to protest the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion on Sunday.

At the Kinder Morgan terminus gate in Burnaby, Cedar Parker-George of the Tsleil-Waututh First Nations called out Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose government gave the project the green light in November of 2016, saying the people will remember that he backed the project. “This will not go through,” he said to cheers and drumming. “It will not happen, Justin.”

Last Updated on Saturday, 03 June 2017 22:31
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A Dam Big Problem: Fracking Companies Build Dozens of Unauthorized Dams in B.C.'s Northeast PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Wednesday, 03 May 2017 13:04

A Dam Big Problem: Fracking Companies Build Dozens of Unauthorized Dams in B.C.'s Northeast

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A subsidiary of Petronas, the Malaysian state-owned petro giant courted by the B.C. government, has built at least 16 unauthorized dams in northern B.C. to trap hundreds of millions of gallons of water used in its controversial fracking operations.

The 16 dams are among “dozens” that have been built by Petronas and other companies without proper authorizations, a senior dam safety official with the provincial government told the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, which began investigating the problem in late March after receiving a tip from someone with knowledge of how widespread the problem is.

Two of the dams built by Progress Energy, a wholly owned subsidiary of Petronas, are towering earthen structures that exceed the height of five-storey apartment buildings. Petronas has proposed building a massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in Prince Rupert, which if built would result in dramatic increases in fracking and industrial water use throughout northeast B.C.

The two dams are so large that they should have been subject to review by B.C.’s Environmental Assessment Office (EAO). Only if a review concluded that the projects could proceed would the EAO have issued a certificate, and only then could the company have moved on to get the necessary authorizations from other provincial agencies.

But nothing close to that happened because the company never submitted its plans to the EAO before the dams were built.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 May 2017 13:19
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This First Nation Just Banned Industrial Logging and Mining from Vancouver Island Territory PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Saturday, 28 January 2017 00:14

By Judith Lavoie - Friday, January 27, 2017 - 10:03 Desmog
Connection to the land and ocean has guided the Ahousaht people throughout their history and that bond is now at the root of a new sustainable economic development plan for the First Nation whose territory spans the heart of the

Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
Under the first phase of the plan, announced Thursday, there will be no mining or industrial logging in Ahousaht traditional territory and about 80 per cent of almost 171,000 hectares will be set aside as cultural and natural areas "to conserve biological diversity, natural landscapes and wilderness and to provide to Ahousaht continued spiritual, cultural and sustenance use."

Last Updated on Monday, 30 January 2017 23:53
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