Tag Archives: coal

Cargo Vessel Crashes Through Deltaport Coal Terminal


Check out this story from the Sightline Institute’s blog, on a cargo vessel that smashed through the coal terminal at Deltaport recently. (December 7, 2012)

That’s a photo taken this morning of British Columbia’s Westshore Coal Terminal. A cargo vessel smashed through the center of the loading trestle—thus the big gap in the middle—putting it out of commission and dumping coal directly into the Strait of Georgia. The coal contamination is clearly visible as the dark streaks in the water.

CKNW News has the story. Here’s video footage of the scene.

It’s hardly encouraging that Port Metro Vancouver, the same agency that operates this facility, is trying to build new coal shipping capacity on the Fraser River.

Today was a rough day for coal shipments in the Northwest. Also this morning, a coal train broke down on the tracks in the middle of Mount Vernon shutting down local streets for nearly an hour.

See original post: http://daily.sightline.org/2012/12/07/nothing-can-go-wrong-at-coal-terminals/

This map from the David Suzuki Foundation's recent report shows all human-driven change to the Peace Region (buffered by 500 m) in red.

New Suzuki Foundation Report Shows Staggering Longterm Industrial Impacts on Peace Region


Roads, dams, logging, mines, fracking, seismic lines, pipelines, transmission lines. The Peace Valley region in northeast BC has seen its share of industrial development over the past half century. Now, a new report from the David Suzuki Foundation vividly illustrates the toll these cumulative impacts have taken on the land.

The foundation commissioned scientists from Global Forest Watch Canada to survey 40 years worth of satellite images in order track the increasing industrialization of the land. They found that over that span, more than 65% of the region has been impacted by industry – often involving different activities layered on top of each other – leaving little intact wilderness.

“Our study found that there are 16,267 oil and gas wells, 28,587 kilometres of pipeline, 45,293 kilometres of roads, and 116,725 kilometres of seismic lines packed into the Peace Region. If laid end to end, the roads, pipelines and seismic lines would wrap around the planet an astonishing four and a half times,” said Peter Lee, who led the research study.

Far from being a thing of the past, this industrialization of the region continues marching forward, with the proposed Site C Dam, new coal mines, and continued logging, fracking and other impacts. All this occurs atop important habitat for threatened populations of grizzly and caribou and amid sensitive boreal forest critical to carbon absorption and sequestration.

The Suzuki Foundation is supporting the work by Treaty 8 First Nations, farmers and conservationists to oppose Site C Dam, which would be the third dam on the Peace River. Representatives of these groups recently came to Vancouver and shared their message with local media.

“Enough is enough,” West Moberly First Nations Chief Roland Willson told The Vancouver Sun. “We need to slow down. It’s more important to maintain the integrity of what’s there than put it under water…all to expand the industrial footprint.”

Said Dr. Faisial Moola of the Suzuki Foundation in a blog on the report’s release, “If built, Site C would flood 3,173 ha of prime farmland and destroy sensitive wildlife habitat.”

“That’s why the David Suzuki Foundation is standing with local farmers and ranchers, as well as the Dunne Zaa/Dane zaa First Nations, to oppose further destruction of this productive, ecologically important and picturesque valley with the construction of the Site C Dam and reservoir.”

Download the full report here.

Damien Gillis is co-directing a documentary, Fractured Land, which examines these issues in detail. Learn how you can support the film here.

Dr. Mark Jaccard was arrested recently in BC at a protest against coal shipments (Vancouver Observer photo)

Radicalizing Scientists


Dr. Mark Jaccard, professor of economics at Simon Fraser University and a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for his contributions to the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, was arrested on railway tracks near Vancouver for blocking the arrival of a Burlington Northern train loaded with Wyoming coal bound for nearby Deltaport and then Asia. Before being released from police custody, he was fined $115 for his May 5th, 2012, trespass violation under the Railway Safety Act, as were the other 12 people in his protest group. “Putting myself in a situation where I may be accused of civil disobedience is not something I have ever done before,” said Dr. Jaccard (CBC, May 5/12). He now joins at least another of his august colleagues, Dr. James Hansen, in this distinction.

Dr. Hansen is one of the world’s foremost authorities on global warming, internationally recognized and awarded for his studies, insights and conclusions on the disruptive effects of greenhouse gases on climate and ecologies. He has been arrested in 2009, 2010 and 2011 for similar protests. During testimony given before the Iowa Utilities Board in 2007, Hansen likened coal trains to “death trains”, contending that they would be “no less gruesome than if they were boxcars headed to crematoria, loaded with uncountable irreplaceable species.” In his assessment, carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels must be curtailed or the environmental consequences will be catastrophic.

Dr. Jaccard echoed this warning with his own eloquence. “The window of opportunity for avoiding a high risk of runaway, irreversible climate change is closing quickly,” he said. “Within this decade we will either have steered away from disaster, or have locked ourselves onto a dangerous course. Our governments continue to ignore the warnings of scientists and push forward with policies that will accelerate the burning of fossil fuels. Private interests — coal, rail, oil, pipeline companies and the rest — continue to push their profit-driven agenda, heedless of the impact on the rest of us.” Meanwhile, he adds, government response to climate change concerns are “entirely inadequate” (Ibid.).

As a concerned grandfather, Dr. Hansen worries about future generations. So does Dr. Jaccard. “I now ask myself how our children, when they look back decades from now, will have expected us to have acted today,” he said. “When I think about that, I conclude that every sensible and sincere person who cares about this planet and can see through lies and delusion motivated by money, should be doing what I and others are now prepared to do.”

These two scholarly, prominent and respected scientists have been radicalized by the shrinking distance between uncontrollable climate change and our options for preventative action. They are not alone in their recognition of the tragic loss of opportunity as government and industry habitually fail to implement the strategies known to reduce CO2 emissions. The level of frustration, exasperation and desperation in scientists everywhere is intensifying as they gauge the seriousness of our situation against a history of empty promises.

This history is nicely summarized in a documentary, Earth Days (2010) by the American cinematographer, Robert Stone. His film captures the evolution of a crisis as it unfolds during the last half-century. It begins with grainy images of US President John F. Kennedy promising that natural places will be saved for Americans to appreciate in a distant 2000, “If we do what is right now, in 1963.”

Subsequent US presidents discover that merely protecting natural places won’t be enough. Kennedy’s successor, Lyndon B. Johnson warns, “Either we stop poisoning our air or we become a nation in gas masks, groping our way through these dying cities, a wilderness of ghost towns that the people have evacuated.” Then Richard M. Nixon cautions, “The great question of the ’70s is, shall we surrender to our surroundings or will we make peace with nature, and begin to make reparations for the damage we have done to our air, to our land and to our water.”

When the “energy crisis” of the ’70s hits, a worried President Gerald Ford promises to “…accelerate technology to capture energy from the sun and the earth for this and future generations.” The next US president, Jimmy Carter, is alarmed enough to advise, “If we fail to act soon, we will face an economic, social and political crisis that will threaten our free institutions.”

Then Ronald Reagan pledges, “We must and we will be sensitive to the delicate balance of our ecosystems, the preservation of endangered species, and the protection of our wilderness lands.”

As for the intended environmental measures of George H.W. Bush, he is equally reassuring. “It is said,” he notes, “that we don’t inherit the Earth from our ancestors but that we borrow it from our children. And when our children look back on this time and this place, they will be grateful.”

Bill Clinton, with ever-clearer scientific evidence, warns, “If we fail to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, deadly heatwaves and droughts will become more frequent, coastal areas will flood and economies will be disrupted. That is going to happen unless we act.”

Finally, George W. Bush observes obliquely but succinctly, “And we have a serious problem. America is addicted to oil.”

In the 49 years since 1963, as environmental awareness has grown, some measures have been implemented to protect ecologies and reduce industrial pollution. But greenhouse gas emissions, a key issue, have continued to rise rather than fall. The United States has abandoned the Kyoto Protocol legal efforts to reduce these emissions. Canada’s endorsement of the Protocol was entirely hollow, and it has since given notice of its withdrawal. The current Canadian government assiduously avoids any mention of climate change and is even cutting relevant scientific funding — not encouraging for an expectant public and hopeful scientists.

As Dr. Jaccard was being led away in handcuffs from the stalled Burlington Northern coal train, he was asked by a reporter, “Was it worth it?” And he replied, “I don’t know. We’ll know — our kids will know — in two decades.”


BC’s Coal Exports Undermine Climate Action Goals


Read this story from the Vancouver Sun on the mounting criticism from climate scientists of BC’s growing coal exports and their contribution to carbon emissions. (Feb. 20, 2012)

VANCOUVER — Coal is fast gaining notoriety as the dirtiest fossil fuel and a growing source of global greenhouse gas emissions, all of which is staining the B.C. government’s green climate-action initiatives.

“It’s a curious inconsistency of the old economy and the new economy at the same time,” said Dan Kammen, a professor of energy at the University of California in Berkeley.

In an interview Monday, he said B.C. must take into account not just carbon emissions within the province, but the full emissions resulting from its coal exports.

“On one hand B.C. is an impressive innovator …” said Kammen, who recently served as chief technical specialist for renewable energy and energy efficiency at the World Bank.

B.C.’s climate-action initiatives include provincial greenhouse gas targets, low-carbon energy projects, the Carbon Tax Act and the Pacific Carbon Trust.

“Like the U.S. and Australia, B.C. also exports coal and that has to go on the books somewhere,” Kammen continued. “That accounting is going to be controversial. No one wants to put pressure on a revenue-producing and job-producing [export] industry.

“But it’s exactly the sort of thing we have to sort out as we figure how to institute a lower-carbon economy going forward.”

Raven Coal Mine meeting in Courtenay, May 30 - Photo by Carolyn Walton

Comox Valley Ready for Civil Disobedience as “Insane” Raven Coal Mine Review Pushed Forward


A little over two years ago we held a town hall meeting in Fanny Bay, where a standing room only crowd discussed the proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine Project. It was at this meeting that concerned citizens formed CoalWatch Comox Valley. The events over the past two years have revealed many interesting details.
It’s clear that the “harmonized” environmental assessment of the Raven Project is deeply flawed. Numerous local governments, community groups, and thousands of British Columbia citizens have called for a more rigorous environmental assessment, a so called independent review panel with public hearings. Unfortunately, the calls for a more rigorous assessment have been rejected at all federal and provincial levels of government.

The near record amount of comments submitted during the two comment periods thus far indicate widespread public concern and opposition to the proposed massive coal mine. Citizens at three public meetings also voiced overwhelming opposition to the Raven Project. The proposed Project is also contradictory to Official Community Plans and Regional Growth Strategies adopted in both the Comox Valley and Port Alberni. Despite all of this, the environmental assessment of the Raven Project is being pushed forward.

It’s fairly obvious that a coal mine project that calls for a mine to be located only 5 kilometers from Baynes Sound, home to a thriving and economically important shellfish industry, is an insane idea. Couple that with an environmental assessment that doesn’t include any mechanism for public consent, and it’s no wonder that the residents of the Comox Valley, Port Alberni, and Vancouver Island are fed up and disgusted.

This cynicism and disgust has led numerous groups and organizations in the Comox Valley to form a Peaceful Direct Action Coalition, to educate the public on peaceful direct action. Many of us see peaceful direct action and civil disobedience, as another tool to use in the fight against this massive coal mine proposal near Fanny Bay.
The year ahead will be a challenging one for those opposed to the Raven Coal Mine Project. But make no mistake, the thousands of people who are opposed to this Project are dedicated, determined, united, and in solidarity, we will be victorious in our fight against this Project.
In solidarity,

John Snyder,  Fanny Bay, BC
President, CoalWatch Comox Valley Society


Please Protect ALL of Baynes Sound


Dear Peter Kent,

I read with interest an article in the Times Colonist about the Federal Government protecting Georgia Strait from Cordova Bay to Southern Gabriola Island and including the Saanich Inlet as a marine conservation area. While I applaud this move, I believe you should protect all of Georgia Strait.

I live in Fanny Bay, midway up the eastern coast of Vancouver Island. We, the thousands of people from the Comox Valley, Denman and Hornby Islands, Qualicum Beach, Parksville, Port Alberni, Tofino and Uclulet, are gravely concerned about the proposed Raven and Bear coal mines planned for the heart of our watershed. Our chief concerns include toxins introduced to our drinking water, the destruction of a thriving and sustainable shellfish industry (which employs 600 people and generates $20 million annually), threats to the second most important Bird Area in British Columbia, highway safety on the route through the venerable Cathedral Grove on the road to Tofino, and perhaps most importantly, a major contributor (an estimated 240 million tonnes of CO2) to global warming.

I implore you to include this area as part of the marine conservation area planned for the Salish Sea. This is a beautiful and delicate ecosystem and is far too precious to be destroyed by short term and short sighted coal mines. WATER is our most precious resource. It is imperative that we leave something for our children and future generations. They are depending on us.

Canada can be a beacon of environmental conservation. I pray that our governments chose the right path. Thank you.

Lynne Wheeler
Fanny Bay, British Columbia


Clark’s Answer to Deepening Debt: Pretend Shipping Tar Sands to China Means “Jobs” for BC


Christy Clark, aka Premier Photo-Op, has a big mess on her hands – but, fear not, she’ll let us all muck about in it.
The government is in deepening debt and Ms. Clark can’t pretend that it’s a mystery how that came about. While there are many causes the principal one is that the government didn’t see the Recession coming and, when it came, went into denial. The budget of 2009 with which they proudly went to the polls was an utter and deliberate sham. Ditto the HST.
How is Clark going to deal with this?
Easy – Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!
And where will those jobs come from?
In part from exports to China. Apparently Premier Clark hasn’t heard that China has its own Recession going, Big Time. Their banking system is essentially the government and only looks good on paper because the US owes them so much. Their mega-projects, especially the Three Gorges Dam, have become serious fiscal problems.
What is truly worrying is that Ms. Clark will try to create employment, preparatory to election time, on her own mega-projects such as the proposed Enbridge pipeline to Kitimat and the related tanker traffic down our treacherous coast. Environmental rules, such as they are, will become a chimera – a cynical gesture of contempt to citizens who put protection of our environment ahead of Ms. Clark’s election prospects. Fracking, the natural gas extraction which pollutes huge amounts of water, will be hugely encouraged.
The entire policy of the Campbell/Clark government will be to have in place a policy which she believes will mesmerize the public into believing that prosperity is just around the corner.
If the genie gave me but one wish it would be that everyone understands that pipelines and tanker traffic don’t pose risks but certainties. We must hammer this home as the corporations move into high gear with their high paid flacks to convince the public that they really do care about the environment. The fact is that they couldn’t care less about the environment or any social values. Oil spills are not seen for the ugly destruction they bring but merely the cost of doing business.
We environmentalists have to face facts – we haven’t the money to match the outputs of both government and industry. We must get down to basics – the issue is not money or jobs but the preservation of our very soul. We must care for our fish not because we fish but because when we lose them we lose a part of us. When we lose our wilderness we don’t do so just in some sort of abstract way but in the real sense that we, each and every one of us, have sustained a wound that will never go away.
There is no “safe” way you can construct and maintain pipelines or transfer oil on tankers. You can’t, in that most weasely of weasel words, “mitigate” the damage. We have to understand that from the moment you start the first pipe installation, the first step on the road to certain environmental devastation has been taken. When the first barrel of oil starts through the pipe, catastrophe has become merely a question of “when”.
The arguments we make are never met head-on. The answer will be, “aw hell, you don’t really believe those eco-freaks, do you?” “Jeez, this is the 21st century, sure we can do these things with little or no risk these days”, “Let those goddam tree huggers talk to the guys out of work”. “If you don’t move forward, you’ll end up going backwards”. There are plenty more one-liners.
There is no doubt that society must change; our ambitions must take into account a different society. For if we permit the destruction of our environment, what do we have left of the beautiful province we all love so much. The unemployed are not so because of environmentalists but because of a society that finds it easier to destroy than create.

While I do not let religion get in the way of rational debate, surely it’s utterly apropos to remember Jesus’s words, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”

And, folks, it’s our soul that’s at stake here.


Clark, Big Oil Want BC and Alberta’s Raw Resources Open for Business to China


Read this report from the Province on the Business Council of BC’s annual economic forum in Vancouver, where industry leaders and politicians joined arms in calling to make BC’s raw resources open for business with the growing Asian market.’

“‘We need to open up the B.C. gate more fully,’ said Lorraine
Mitchelmore, president and county chair of Shell Canada Ltd. ‘Canada
really needs to diversify its customer base for energy products and
create access to global energy markets. This is a real time of great
opportunity for Canada.’ Lindsay Gordon, president and CEO of HSBC
Bank of Canada, echoed these sentiments, and added that British
Columbians need a ‘wake-up call’ of the importance of Asia to ‘their
future and prosperity.'”


Shades of Green: A $50 Million Message to Coal


As heat records broke by the hundreds across the United States this summer, Michael Bloomberg braved the sweltering temperatures on a hot July morning, mounted a platform in front of the coal-fired GenOn power station in Alexandria, Virginia, and announced to those gathered that his charity, Bloomberg Philanthropies, was giving $50 million to the US Sierra Club to aid its Beyond Coal Campaign.

Bloomberg, mayor of New York, multi-billionaire and founder of his namesake philanthropy organization, was recognizing the “truly impressive” work of the Sierra Club in stopping the construction of at least 153 new coal-fired power stations in the US. The 91 plants that it was able to shut down since 2010 has prevented 114 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent from entering the atmosphere. The $50 million donation will be used to expand the Sierra Club’s efforts to phase out one-third of the existing coal-fired US power plants, to cut coal consumption for electricity by 30 percent by 2020, and to significantly reduce both greenhouse gas emissions and the plethora of toxic pollutants that cause widespread environmental and health damage – in the US alone, the annual human effect of burning coal is estimated at 13,000 premature deaths and health costs of $100 billion. None of these liabilities are weighed when computing the economic value of mining and burning coal.

But Bloomberg’s $50 million gift is more than a gesture of support for the Sierra Club and its ambitious objective of revoking “the social licence for burning coal”. It is a powerful indictment against coal itself, the censuring of a fossil fuel from the Industrial Revolution era that has become the single largest scourge of our planet’s environmental health. Its emissions comprise mercury, cadmium, lead and other neurotoxic heavy metals, together with acid-producing sulphur, radioactive elements, unhealthy particulates, dioxins, arsenic and over three times the weight of coal in carbon dioxide. (Assuming coal is about 90% carbon then, when burned, the 12 atomic mass units of each carbon atom combine with two oxygen atoms of 16 atomic mass units each to become the 44 atomic mass units of carbon dioxide. In a process that probably seems counter-intuitive to non-scientists, the dense 0.9 tonnes of carbon contained in each tonne of solid coal becomes 3.3 tonnes of gaseous carbon dioxide that is dispersed into the atmosphere as a greenhouse gas.)

Bloomberg’s gift of $50 million attaches weighty ethical considerations to both the burning of coal and the mining of coal. Indeed, coal mining is, itself, a massively polluting operation that taints air, water and land – just the initial effects of a process that is culminating in disturbing structural impacts to global climate and ocean acidity. So Bloomberg’s generosity has implications in the distant communities of Campbell River and the Comox Valley where coal mining has become topical and controversial.

How serious is this issue? At the level of principle, the issue is whether these two communities become part of the problem or the solution. Bloomberg’s $50 million gives moral weight to the solution side by helping to reduce the ills caused by coal in the US. Locally, conservation and environmental organizations, together with many other concerned citizens, are expending countless hours examining technical studies, evaluating the risks and warning about present and future damage. They are also challenging a political momentum that would rather acquiesce to a momentary temptation than consider the long-term perspective. Any concern about whether or not a mining corporation could provide enough “financial security to ensure waste water treatment from the [Quinsam] mine site will be treated in perpetuity…” (Courier Islander, Aug. 19/11) is completely unaware of the duration of “perpetuity” – the comment does, however, acknowledge the risk. Reasonable prudence would never consider subjecting future generations to such a persistent and onerous burden.

At the practical level, when Quinsam Coal cannot even manage its existing wastes, then the prospect of allowing further mining of an even more polluting grade of coal simply boggles any sense of social and environmental logic. And for what? On the positive side is a mere four additional years of local jobs. On the negative side is 1.7 million tonnes of dirty coal, 5.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions, and the likelihood of perpetual acid seepage into a healthy, fish-bearing watershed that is a signature attraction of the Campbell River region. The balance is an unqualified “no” for more coal mining. And if any doubt remains, consider provincial authorities that have been both incapable and unwilling to enforce whatever meagre environmental regulations they might impose.The proposed Raven mine in the Comox Valley invites the same risks and hazards.

Coal mines have another shortcoming. They expose and release methane, a greenhouse gas that is about 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide. The Raven mine is projected to exhaust 127,500 cubic meters of methane per day into the atmosphere. The Quinsam mine, depending on its relative size, would exhaust an equivalent amount. These emissions produce consequences that our planet can no longer absorb or ameliorate.

Michael Bloomberg is just one of many people who now grasp the disastrous implications of mining and burning coal. In his speech to the people who had gathered on that hot July morning in Alexandria, Virginia, he said we must “fight climate change and bring about our clean energy future.” By offering $50 million to this cause, he said, “I am doing my part to move our country Beyond Coal. Are you with me?”

“Are you with me?” is a clarion call that is now echoing around the planet, a moral imperative to anyone who cares about the health of our bodies and the well being of our oceans, rivers, lakes and air. Listen and it can be heard in even the communities of Campbell River and the Comox Valley. The future is now. And the time has come for us to become the change that we want to happen.

The Raven Underground Coal Mine would be situated just 5 km from Fanny Bay Wharf (shown here) in Baynes Sound on Vancouver Island (photo: John Snyder)

Raven Coal Mine Proposal: Damien Gillis’ Letter


As the window for public comments draws to a close in the first stage of the environmental review process for the proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine, nearly 2,000 comments have been submitted thus far from diverse individuals and organizations. Comments can still be sent by mail, so long as they are postmarked by no later than June 30, 2011. Here is Damien Gillis’ letter to the environmental assessment process.


I was born and raised on Vancouver Island, not far north of Baynes Sound, the site of the proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine. I have a deep affection for the Island, its ecologies, and particularly for Fanny Bay Oysters.

I am also quite partial to Port Alberni, its wild salmon, and local natural wonders like the Somass River, Cathedral Grove and Cameron Lake.

Moreover, I am gravely concerned with a globalized economic system that sees us ship raw logs and dirty coal halfway around the the world in bunker diesel-powered ships, putting the Canadian manufacturing sector out of business while poorly-paid Asian workers labour in coal-fired plants, fashioning those Canadian raw materials into finished goods – then shipping them all the way back to us to stock the shelves at Walmart and Home Depot. It is a profoundly inefficient and unsustainable system that depends on abundant, cheap fossil fuels (including Canadian coal like that which would be pulled from under Baynes Sound were this project to go forth), carrying unacceptable ecological consequences and very few commensurate economic benefits for the people of BC. This Raven Mine is not only the epitome of a truly insane socio-economic system – but it would greatly help facilitate its advancement.

For all of these reasons, I am steadfastly opposed to the proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine proposal.

Since jobs and the economy are invariably the argument proffered by proponents of such projects, I feel I must specifically address this contention. The Raven project makes no sense economically for British Columbians, particularly in the communities directly affected by the project. The jobs offered pale in comparison to those threatened in the thriving local shellfish industry (600 jobs), tourism and retirement-orineted real estate, among other industries.

The associated truck traffic threatens the entire corridor from Fanny Bay to Port Alberni – including major tourism destinations in Combs, Cathedral Grove and Cameron and Sproat Lakes, not to mention Port Alberni’s world-famous salmon sport fishing industry. There is also the risk to the entire community of Port Alberni and surrounding ecosystems from the proposed 80,000 tonne coal storage facility at a new coal port to be built for the project. The mere notion of putting a coal storage facility in the midst of Canada’s most dangerous Tsunami zone is incomprehensible – especially in light of what we have all witnessed recently in Fukushima, Japan.

These aren’t whimsical what-ifs. These are serious questions that need to be fully accounted for in an honest and comprehensive risk assessment of the project. When when does so, it is clear that the risks absolutely dwarf the rewards from this project. Not, of course, for proponent Compliance Energy – but for the people of BC. And that is your one and only concern as public servants in reviewing this project. The Raven Mine is not, nor will it ever be with any amount of mitigation, an acceptable risk for the people and environment of this province and region.

In an era of climate change, peak oil, collapsing salmon stocks and ecologies, the Raven proposal would be taking us in precisely the wrong direction. We citizens have a duty to our fellow Canadians and our local ecosystems, but also to the world to do our part to ensure a more sustainable future for all. We are plainly not carrying our share of the load – and the Raven Coal Mine would only exacerbate that troubling trend.

You have heard from – at the time of this writing – some 1,800 individuals and organizations almost exclusively urging you to reject the Raven Underground Coal Mine proposal. The public will is clear and unmistakable on this matter.

I now add my voice to that chorus and hope that you will hear it loud and clear.


Damien Gillis