Site C dam opponents, who have been on the losing side of four recent federal and B.C. Supreme Court decisions, received some welcome support for their cause at the just concluded UBCM convention in Vancouver.
Delegates passed a package of resolutions, including those from the District of Hudson’s Hope and the Peace River Regional District, calling on the Province to delay Site C construction, pending more impact review and consultation.
The National Campaign Director with the Western Canada Wilderness Committee, Joe Foy, had taken the opposition concerns to the entrance of the Vancouver Convention Centre last week, hoping to persuade delegates to do what the majority then did, call for reviews by the BC Utilities Commission and the Agricultural Land Commission.
“Nine billion dollars for a project that has no useful purpose. The greatest loss of agricultural land that we’ve ever seen out of our agricultural land reserve, and all of this, the money, the farmland. Our provincial government has removed the lawful rightful oversight of the BC Utilities Commission, the Agricultural Land Commission. That really stinks. I think what we’re looking at here is the biggest mistake that British Columbia has ever made and I think that it’s really important that we put in a lot of effort to make sure that mistake doesn’t happen.”
Still despite what he saw as this encouraging news, Mr. Foy was also disappointed to learn, from what a Wilderness Committee news release called, Peace River Valley local people, that clear-cutting of an island at the confluence of the Peace and Moberly Rivers is now set to begin.
That noted he again urged the government to heed the UBCM message, stop work, and allow the independent oversight to proceed, arguing it would have already happened were it not for the government’s actions to prevent, “Proper lawful assessment.”