Friday, August 22, 2014

Environmental Concerns - Protect the Waters

Industry or the Environment?

Since oil companies can't promise they can contain and clean up a spill (in a volatile moving source like rivers, inlets and oceans), why was the approval given to Northern Gateway pipeline in June? That set the stage for a contest of wills.

Our lands, waterways and coastal areas in British Columbia will suffer the aftermath of any problem resulting from 'accidents', not the companies or provinces wanting a corridor to the shipping facilities. Spills and leaks happen. Cleanup and dealing with the aftermath can take a long, long time. Finding someone to take responsibility for the problem involves much finger pointing and shifting of blame.

Harbour Waters, Vancouver, BC, by DG Hudson

Whose water is it?

There are some who care what an oil spill might do to a community of people who depend on the waters and its cleanliness. The Nak'azdli First Nation is one of the groups that would be at risk. A battle will ensue between the industry and those who believe we should protect the resources from government and development intervention.

The climate is already changing. Do we want to hasten it by giving industry the chance to further pollute the waters we and other species depend upon? Shipping containers and tankers have developed leaks for various reasons. Does anyone inspect them other than their owners?  'Oops, mea culpa' is not good enough.

Note: The inspiration for this post came from the Vancouver Sun newspaper reference shown below.


The Stuart River

Located in central British Columbia west of Prince George, the Stuart River flows over 110 km from Stuart Lake to its junction with the Nechako River. The river drains off a portion of the Nechako Plateau.

This area is a wildlife habitat with deer, moose, elk, and trumpeter swans. In the river are sturgeon and high-quality sockeye salmon. This is also an area rich in history and archaeological sites of First Nations Carrier people. An ancient village exists near the joining of the Nechako and Stuart rivers.

Historically, the Stuart River was the route used by explorer Simon Fraser and the New Caledonia fur traders. Paddlewheelers plied the rivers in the early 1900s to supply the nearby Fort St. James and other fur trading outposts. It is also the home of the Nak'azdli First Nation.

Freighter in the Harbour, taken from Ferry, by DG Hudson

What do you think about it? Is the prevailing attitude to let the following generations worry about it?

Please leave a comment to let me know you were here, and I'll respond. Thanks for dropping by!


The Stuart River

Newspaper article
The Vancouver Sun, front page news, Saturday, August 16, 2014.  Centre of Gateway resistance, The Nak'azdli First Nation is part of the Alliance opposed to Enbridge's Northern Gateway oil pipeline. Also: There will be no pipeline, section A10, by Gord Hoekstra, also in The Vancouver Sun. British Columbia Heritage Rivers Program