2017 letter to Ministry of Forests

MT_Dag-winter-VALHALLA
Without proper updated precipitation data and the calculation of the carbon sequestration of the forests, the true natural capital of the forests is not addressed or calculated into a true cost benefit analysis. The work on Perry Ridge needs to be updated and the added data included. Without this data our Association submits that to proceed with any further logging on Perry Ridge is negligent.
Letter to Ministry of Forests -  Arrow Forest Jan 2017

Allen Isaacson Professional Hydrologists Report- ECA Pages 1 to 6… page 1 ECA  pg 2 ECA Page 3 ECA Page 4 ECA  Page 5 ECA  Page 6 ECA

American Geophysical Report
Deforestation in snowy regions causes more floods Green(1)

Judge Parrot – Report  Parrett Decision

The Geological History of The Slocan and Kootenay Rivers

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Season’s Greetings – Perry Ridge Water Users Association

norns2010winter_2011-3355

Season’s Greetings Please support the protection of water and all that depends on it – including all of us. I hope you all have a safe holiday and a healthy and prosperous New Year. Thank you for your support and please make a New Year’s resolution to write to the government. There are e-mail addresses within the letter below for you to use. Water is the source of all life and irreplaceable.

Best Wishes

Marilyn

                            

 
PERRY RIDGE WATER USERS ASSOCIATION
4403 Slocan River Road
Winlaw, BC
V0G 2J0
December 1, 2016
 
                                                Re:  Slocan Valley – Rails to Trails
 
Dear Mr. Cannings:
 
Thank you for your Parliamentary Bulletin Fall 2016. I read the Bulletin and agree that the Rails to Trails are of economic benefit to the small communities it winds its way through. I live in the Slocan Valley and would like to bring to your attention the fact that the forests and watersheds on the valley walls are part of the natural capital that contributes to this economic benefit. 
 
The Rail to Trails follows the Slocan River close to Highway 6.  The valley walls need protection to keep this portion of the Cross Canada Trail system with the visual, natural scenic forested mountains.  In your newsletter you mentioned “the economic benefits could be significantly boosted if the trails were well-maintained, better connected and promoted widely.” Should logging go ahead on the valley walls then the trail will not fulfill tourist expectations of visiting natural, beautiful BC and will impact the economic benefits the local citizens referred to, which also include the economic benefits to the river use by local whitewater rafters, tubers, swimmers, kayakers and canoeists.
 
Protecting these forests will also protect the unstable deeply incised creeks on the valley walls that descend in and around the homes at the base of the mountains.  Dr. June Ryder in her report “Geological Hazards of the Perry Ridge Benchlands” stated her grave concerns about several aspects of the potential effects of logging the Perry Ridge uplands www.perryridge.org. The water users do not accept the increased risk that logging poses to their homes.The creeks do not need any more sediment and debris entering them from logging slash and disturbed soils. The late Dr. Tony Salway pointed out to the Ministry of Forests that there was no snow accumulation data or updated precipitation data. Our Association submits that without prior updated accurate scientific precipitation data collection, it is negligent to preceed with logging above our homes on Perry Ridge.
 
Another benefit to protecting the valley walls is the ability of these forests to sequester carbon and assist the world in helping with climate change effects – these effects also include intense rainfall locally that can exacerbate landslides. 
 
The Slocan River would benefit from less sedimentation and debris flow increased from logging and diverting water. These creeks help maintain water temperatures, helping keep the river clean and improve habitat for fisheries (bull trout, sculpin and trout) and wildlife.(Blue Heron, Screech Owls, Western Toad, Golden Eagle, Baldheaded Eagle and Osprey to name a few.) These areas are wildlife corridors and would provide buffer zones to Valhalla Provincial Park and Kokanee Provincial Park
 
 The Slocan River has important Sinixt cultural sites that will and already have been affected by river erosion and heavy sedimentation and need protection. (Dr. Nathan Goodale’s Report – Report on Archaeological Investigations (20112013) at the Slocan Narrows Pithouse Village (DkQi 1, 2, and17), Southeastern, British Columbia)
 
The Perry Ridge Water Users Association Constitution includes:
 “To act in a manner consistent with the preservation of the visual resources of the viewshed lying within or on both Crown held portions of Perry Ridge.
 
We look forward to you lobbying to exclude the valley walls from the “working forest” and lobby to protect these forests. Perhaps making the valley walls part of the Regional Park system would be a solution.
 
The intact forests on the valley walls are working to protect our lives, homes, Sinixt Cultural sites, water, wildlife habitat, and are a community economic benefit as it relates to the Rails to Trails and the Slocan River. Please visit our website at: www.perryridge.org for further background information.
 
Yours truly,
 
PERRY RIDGE WATER USERS ASSOCIATION
 
(signed Marilyn Burgoon
 
 
Marilyn Burgoon
 
Cc Ministry of Environment
      Ministry of Forests
      Sinixt Nation
      Walter Popoff, RDCK Director
      Federal Ministry of Environment – Climate Change            
      Lilina Lysenko, Counsel
      Katrine Conroy, MLA
      Minister of Public Safety
    • Norns2010Winter_2011-3355

    Save

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    The Geological History of the Slocan & Kootenay River Basins

    page-0

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    LEMON CREEK FUEL SPILL TRIAL DELAYED

    lemon_truck_2-1

     

     

     

     

     

     

    In 2013 a tanker truck accident spilled 33,000 litres of jet fuel spilled into the Lemon Creek. The public needs to wait a little longer before the trial continues. — The Nelson Daily file photo
    The trial on charges stemming from an aviation fuel spill in the Slocan Valley in 2013 is promising to be a long and complicated one.
    The trial resumed in Nelson on Tuesday- only to be put off for at least two more months.
    Crown counsel John Cliffe told Judge Phillip Seagram the Crown intends to call about 65 witnesses to establish their case.
    It’s going to take time to get the material associated with all those witnesses out to defence attorneys.
    Seagram agreed to put off the trial until at least December 6, with a short check in November to bring all parties up to date on the preparations.
    The Executive Flight Centre, one of its employees, and the provincial government are all co-defendants in the case, begun after a tanker truck carrying aviation fuel up a logging road in the Slocan Valley tipped over and spilled 33,000 litres of fuel into Lemon Creek in July 2013.
    The spill killed fish and wildlife downstream, and affected shallow wells of residents living in the area.  Residents were also forced to evacuate their homes while the cleanup took place.
    It took nearly three years for charges to be laid, and only came after a local activist, Marilyn Burgoon, successfully laid private criminal charges against the defendants. Her win in court prompted the federal government to lay charges in July.
    Burgoon said she was happy to hear the Crown is preparing to present so many witnesses for the prosecution.
    “I’m glad they’re doing a good job on the investigation and prosecution,” she told reporters after Tuesday’s hearing. “It’s something I never could have done, it would have been too costly and lengthy- and I can’t access what the government can access in terms of information.”
    The defendants have been charged with two counts of “depositing a deleterious substance in a water frequented by fish” under the Fisheries Act. The penalty on conviction is a minimum of $5,000 for an individual and $100,000 for the government or a company.

    There are also six counts of “introducing waste into a stream causing pollution” under the Environmental Management Act. The maximum penalty set out in the Act is a $1-million fine or six months in jail.
    The defendants have not made their pleas in the case.
    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    Families reach $10 million settlement with Grandy Lake Forest Associates over deadly 2014 Landslide

    Families reach $10 million settlement with Grandy Lake Forest Associates over deadly 2014 landslide Families reach $10 million settlement with Grandy Lake Forest Associates over deadly 2014 landslide

    The Perry Ridge Water Users Association continues to work to avoid such a tragedy on the unstable slopes in the Slocan Valley. 
    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    BC Rivers Day 2016

    bc-rivers-day-2016-poster

    The Geological History of the Slocan and Kootenay Basin presented by Lesley Anderton at the Harrop Community Hall on BC Rivers Day September 25th.

    If you missed the Nakusp or Slocan Presentation“The Geological History of the Slocan and Kootenay Basins” presented by Lesley Anderton or you would like to see it again, you have another opportunity on BC Rivers Day at the Harrop Community Hall. . There will be an opening by Sinixt Matriarch, at 12:00, a luncheon (by donation) and an educational visual slide presentation, concluding with a field trip to Kootenay Lake. Everyone welcome and tourists, in particular can learn the amazing geological history of this area of British Columbia. Rock climbers will also be interested in the information about the rocks in this area.

    The presentation teaches the geological history going back millions of years, which includes the formation of continents and in particular it teaches about the various rock formations and mountains in the area. It explains what these rocks tell us about the history of the mountains, water and land formations. This presentation deepens our connection to this place and our knowledge of the landscapes that surrounds us, supports our survival, and provides a significant portion of hydroelectric power to the rest of the Province. .

    Many of you will already know Lesley Anderton, retired Instructor from Selkirk College. Ms. Anderton grew up in Lancashire in the north of England where she came to love the outdoors. Having gained a BA (Hons) degree in Geology and Geography from Keele, she won a Commonwealth Scholarship to study at UBC. After completing her master’s degree with a thesis entitled ‘The Quaternary Stratigraphy and Geomorphology of the Lower Thompson Valley’ she returned to work in England at Malham Tarn Field Centre in the Yorkshire Dales. In 1969 Lesley began her 35 year career at Selkirk College, where she taught first and second year geology and geography courses and developed the ‘Geology, Landforms and Soils’ course for renewable resources technology students. In addition she developed a first year Environmental Science Course for non-science majors. In the summers she frequently worked on terrain analysis mapping with Dr June Ryder. Some of you may recall Dr. June Ryder from her work locally, “Geological Hazards of the Perry Ridge Benchlands”and her grave concerns about several aspects of the potential effects of logging the Perry Ridge uplands www.perryridge.org

    Ms. Anderton has always been interested in sharing her love of the natural environment with non geologists and enjoys giving talks on local geology and leading field trips. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and cross country skiing as well as visiting polar latitudes. The appeal of Lesley Anderton has been demonstrated over the decades as a much loved Geology instructor at Selkirk College and her knowledge is extensive, and irreplaceable. We invite attendees to bring their film equipment so that this presentation may be filmed for future reference (see advertisement in this issue of Pennywise and in the Nelson Star next week. Thank you to the RDCK Area E Discretionary Fund.

    We look forward to seeing you and celebrating BC and World Rivers Day.

    Submitted by Perry Ridge Water Users Association

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    A reminder that the Lemon Creek case will begin Tuesday, September 13th 9:30 at the Nelson Court House

    A reminder that Tuesday, September 13th 9:30 at the Nelson Court House the Lemon Creek case will begin and your presence is important if you can make it to show our support for Justice for Lemon Creek. West Coast Environmental Law Staff Counsel wrote the following as a review of the case. We hope to see you there.

    Government charges (finally) laid in Lemon Creek jet fuel spill – thanks to private prosecution
    29 July, 2016

    Photo courtesy of Valley Voice
    In 2013 a jet fuel truck operated by Executive Flight Centre, and servicing BC Ministry of Forests firefighting efforts, plunged off a road in the Slocan Valley, crashing into the pristine Lemon Creek and dumping 33,000 litres into the river, compromising drinking water and killing fish. The province investigated, concluding that no charges were warranted. The case would have been closed, but for the efforts of Marilyn Burgoon, a resident of the Slocan Valley, with a little help from our Environmental Dispute Resolution Fund. When the province wouldn’t act, Marilyn laid her own charges – a course of action that led directly to a federal government appointed prosecutor laying new charges last Friday (July 22nd) against both Executive Flight Centre and the BC Government.

    As the Nelson Star reports:

    The federal government has decided to lay eight charges against Executive Flight Centre stemming from the fuel spill in 2013 when the company’s tanker truck overturned into Lemon Creek in the Slocan Valley, spilling 33,000 litres of fuel. Also named as defendants are the provincial government and the driver of the fuel truck, Danny LaSante.

    Court documents filed last week show two counts of “depositing a deleterious substance in a water frequented by fish” under the FisheriesAct. The penalty on conviction is a minimum of $5,000 for an individual and $100,000 for the government or a company.

    There are also six counts of “introducing waste into a stream causing pollution” under the EnvironmentalManagementAct. The maximum penalty set out in the Act is a $1-million fine or six months in jail.

    West Coast is proud to have played an important role in getting charges laid and the potential for justice for Lemon Creek. When Marilyn first contacted us about the province’s failure to lay charges, we put her in touch with the lawyers who became her legal team – Lilina Lysenko and Jeff Jones (the latter having handled private prosecutions for Alexandra Morton). We also provided some of the funding that allowed her to lay charges under the Fisheries Act against Executive Flight Centre and the government. Marilyn was able to convince a BC provincial court judge to issue the charges and order the defendants to respond.

    Thousands of British Columbians also wrote to the federal government urging them to take over the case and lay charges. It now appears that those voices were heard! 

    The broader context

    We shouldn’t be all celebration – however. The Lemon Creek charges raise fundamental questions about why Marilyn had to work so hard to get charges laid in a dramatic and high profile spill. Although the charges are yet more evidence that private prosecutions can be an important environmental law tool – in an ideal world the government, not private citizens, should be laying charges.

    In actual fact we’ve seen drops in environmental charges being laid at both the federal and provincial (BC) levels, and the Lemon Creek example suggests that this is because governments are failing to lay charges – rather than that there’s no serious environmental harm occurring. Cuts to field staff, changes to the law and perhaps ideological motivations all play a role in this chronic non-enforcement of our environmental laws.

    We should all press our governments to reverse these troubling trends, but in the meantime citizens will increasingly consider turning to private prosecutions when the government doesn’t step up to the plate. At least one person retweeted our tweet about the Lemon Creek charges, adding a#MountPolley hashtag – a reference to the fact that charges have yet to be laid in relation of the Mount Polley mine disaster.

    Marilyn and her lawyers have shown us that a determined individual acting on behalf of her community can get some environmental justice. Congratulations once again, Marilyn. 

    By Andrew Gage, Staff Counsel

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    THE GLADE CREEK WATERSHED RESERVE: NO “MISNOMER” / NOT “JUST A NAME”

    - Will Koop, BC Tap Water Alliance

    http://www.bctwa.org/GladeReserve-Aug30-2016.pdf

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    Norway- The First Coutry to Ban Deforestation

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

    Goverment Charges Laid – Lemon Creek Fuel Spill

    Marilyn…

    Government charges (finally) laid in Lemon Creek jet fuel spill – thanks to private prosecution
    29 July, 2016

    Photo courtesy of Valley Voice
    In 2013 a jet fuel truck operated by Executive Flight Centre, and servicing BC Ministry of Forests firefighting efforts, plunged off a road in the Slocan Valley, crashing into the pristine Lemon Creek and dumping 33,000 litres into the river, compromising drinking water and killing fish. The province investigated, concluding that no charges were warranted. The case would have been closed, but for the efforts of Marilyn Burgoon, a resident of the Slocan Valley, with a little help from our Environmental Dispute Resolution Fund. When the province wouldn’t act, Marilyn laid her own charges – a course of action that led directly to a federal government appointed prosecutor laying new charges last Friday (July 22nd) against both Executive Flight Centre and the BC Government.

    As the Nelson Star reports:

    The federal government has decided to lay eight charges against Executive Flight Centre stemming from the fuel spill in 2013 when the company’s tanker truck overturned into Lemon Creek in the Slocan Valley, spilling 33,000 litres of fuel. Also named as defendants are the provincial government and the driver of the fuel truck, Danny LaSante.

    Court documents filed last week show two counts of “depositing a deleterious substance in a water frequented by fish” under the FisheriesAct. The penalty on conviction is a minimum of $5,000 for an individual and $100,000 for the government or a company.

    There are also six counts of “introducing waste into a stream causing pollution” under the Environmental Management Act. The maximum penalty set out in the Act is a $1-million fine or six months in jail.

    West Coast is proud to have played an important role in getting charges laid and the potential for justice for Lemon Creek. When Marilyn first contacted us about the province’s failure to lay charges, we put her in touch with the lawyers who became her legal team – Lilina Lysenko and Jeff Jones (the latter having handled private prosecutions for Alexandra Morton). We also provided some of the funding that allowed her to lay charges under the Fisheries Act against Executive Flight Centre and the government. Marilyn was able to convince a BC provincial court judge to issue the charges and order the defendants to respond.

    Thousands of British Columbians also wrote to the federal government urging them to take over the case and lay charges. It now appears that those voices were heard! 

    The broader context

    We shouldn’t be all celebration – however. The Lemon Creek charges raise fundamental questions about why Marilyn had to work so hard to get charges laid in a dramatic and high profile spill. Although the charges are yet more evidence that private prosecutions can be an important environmental law tool – in an ideal world the government, not private citizens, should be laying charges.

    In actual fact we’ve seen drops in environmental charges being laid at both the federal and provincial (BC) levels, and the Lemon Creek example suggests that this is because governments are failing to lay charges – rather than that there’s no serious environmental harm occurring. Cuts to field staff, changes to the law and perhaps ideological motivations all play a role in this chronic non-enforcement of our environmental laws.

    We should all press our governments to reverse these troubling trends, but in the meantime citizens will increasingly consider turning to private prosecutions when the government doesn’t step up to the plate. At least one person retweeted our tweet about the Lemon Creek charges, adding a#MountPolley hashtag – a reference to the fact that charges have yet to be laid in relation of the Mount Polley mine disaster.

    Marilyn and her lawyers have shown us that a determined individual acting on behalf of her community can get some environmental justice. Congratulations once again, Marilyn. 

    By Andrew Gage, Staff Counsel

    Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment