FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Many residents across Northern B.C. feel a high level of uncertainty when it comes to the Provincial proposal of the Caribou Recovery Program.
To have their concerns heard and their rights protected, many have signed an online petition to have the Province put a halt on the Project.
In the petition letter, Mike Mulvahill says that he feels that his and other resident’s way of life will be profoundly affected if the Program goes ahead as planned.
“Trappers, outfitters, and other backcountry tenures will also be heavily affected. Not sure about the status of the Powder King ski hill. So, for myself, family, and friends, this will completely change our livelihood and lifestyle.”
Currently, the Province is looking at implementing caribou recovery activities west of Chetwynd.
Both Residents and the Peace River Regional District want the Province to halt the Program and to take a look at the impacts it will have on the affected communities.
Mulvahill also says that all backcountry activities will be closed if the Program is imposed.
“So, this closure, not to be confused with the BC caribou closure, will completely close all backcountry recreation opportunities for everyone and is being promoted by the Federal Liberal Government. These folks are packing a pretty big stick and are proposing a complete shutdown of the area south of Williston Lake, west to Mackenzie and south to the bottom end of the Narrow Way. So, no public access to these areas for any use other than caribou mitigation.”
Mulvahill also feels that if backcountry activities are taken away from him, a piece of his identity will be forever lost.
“Two years ago, my son and I both had limited entry mountain goat tags in m-u 7-21. We took my dad along who is in his mid-seventies, and my daughter and son-in-law showed up with their son. So, four generations were out enjoying the mountains, camping and watching the grizzlies eat blueberries. If we are not allowed to do things like that anymore, I am not sure if I will know who l am.”
To date, the petition has reached close to 14,000 signatures; almost to the goal of 15,000.
To view and to sign the petition, you can visit Change.org