thanks to Wally du Temple, Alison LeDuc, Jill Swartz, Seachange Marine Conservation
Society, Martha McMahon, Peter Gardner, Birgit Bateman, Heather Page, Cheryl
Taves, Laura Acton, FM Smythe, Don Poole, Wes Gietz, Anna Galon, Mary June
Pettyfer, Janice Turner, Roger Colwill, and Katey Bloomfield.
* Donations can be made to EcoNews, 395 Conway Rd, Victoria V8X 3X1.
For receipt, include a stamped addressed envelope.
receive EcoNews by email, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers wanted - hands-on stream restoration & trail-building, interpretation
work with children, at Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary. Call Joan 479-0211.
Greenways Grants for conservation of natural features, linking green areas.
Deadline March 31st. Dianne McLauchlan, Provincial Capital Commission,
Drinking Water Stewardship Award, includes stewardship of watershed
lands. Nominations until March 31st. Details CRD 360-3228. Know
Help wanted : Environmentally ill Fairfield woman needs
unscented worker(s) who neither use fabric softener nor share laundry facilities
with other users. Duties : housework, errands; laundry at worker’s home
? Call 920-0036.
Can you help me to draw up a list of local GM-free foods? Pauline, 656-2430.
Foods gift certificates for sale at face value ($5, $20, etc), no expiry
date, to support local volunteers in overseas grassroots sustainable development.
(See also Diary, 25th). 642-7978 or 382-5196.
Any land out there ? Would like to rent 1 acre for organic farming. Caren,
Share mobile home at Wildwood with non-smoking vegetarian on Merve Wilkinson’s
property 70 acre forest on lake, near ocean. Call (250) 722-2292
Wanted: Single, quiet, environmentally conscious person to buy (or maybe
rent) bright 2BR upper duplex in character home in Oaklands neighbourhood.
Sublet available for non-smoking vegetarian, Fairfield. Leave msg 261-1975
Denise Savoie reports : I've been on Council for 3 months now, and it's
quite a learning curve. I'll be responsible for Parks and Recreation, and
working with Councillor Jane Lunt on Transportation. We successfully stopped
commercialization of Beacon Hill Park, and we’ll soon embark on a public
planning process to consider the future of this jewel. I'm also working
with the Engineering Dept to find safer ways to bring cyclists and pedestrians
across the Johnson Street Bridge (complicated by the many jurisdictions
– Via Rail, E&N, Rail America, City, feds).
with councillors from Saanich, Esquimalt and View Royal, plus scientific
and legal advisors, I will be on the Board of the Veins of Life Society,
which has been working so hard to clean up the harbour and Gorge Waterway.
Over the years, the fractured governance of the waterway has led to some
bad decisions: contamination of the water from industry, homes and sewer-stormwater
cross-connections; changes to the shoreline due to fill and retaining walls;
the proliferation of docks; development right up to the shoreline, etc.
We will be considering the questions of private moorage, and whether to
establish a Development Permit area to give the Gorge more protection. I'd
also like to see a stormwater by-law with more teeth.
I serve on the CRD Regional Planning and Environment Committees, and chair
the Round Table on the Environment. A regional planning summit will be held
in June at Royal Roads to discuss four alternatives, and to recommend the
preferred option to direct growth, protect green space and improve public
transportation. The Environment Committee will be putting out fact sheets
on our liquid waste management options - I believe our first investments
must be in source control to prevent individuals and businesses from pouring
chemicals down the drain, and in our 80-90 year-old sewer and stormwater
infrastructure that causes much of the outfall contamination. The Round
Table will be publishing a report on positive and negative environmental
regional trends - for a presentation, call Ron Kirstein, 360-3133
effecting environmental and social change is the task of the whole community.
Those of us who were elected in November need your ideas and support. The
City of Victoria has a survey on its website www.city.victoria.bc.ca,
based on the past few years’ priorities. If issues that are important to
you don't show up, this is a good time to tell Council (by March 7th).
You can also contact me directly at email@example.com
children to build more fulfilling and ecologically sustainable communities.
6 multi-aged class, Sept 2000
SPRING ISLANDERS SEND
is a conflict developing on Salt Spring Island which is engaging every islander.
It has its origins in 16th century Europe, when Salt Spring was
known only to the native Salish people, and entirely covered with oldgrowth
forest. It is a story of two conflicting sets of values. Around 1490, Franz
von Thurn und Taxis was granted a monopoly to manage the communications
system for the expanding Hapsburg Empire, running horse-drawn relays across
Europe. The family did well and married into royalty, becoming one of the
richest families in Europe. During World War Two, Prince Albert was a staunch
opponent of Hitler, and they lost many of their lands, but they recovered,
and Albert’s son Johannes invested in land in North America – including
4,816 acres on Salt Spring (1/10th of the island) which he managed
in a slow European way, varying from single tree selection to patch cuts.
Then Johannes married an impoverished German countess, Gloria von Schonburg-Glauchau,
34 years his younger, and they led prominent lives in the international
jet-set, with extravagant partying. Johannes died in 1991, and the family
faced death duties and huge debts. Gloria started cashing in, and sold the
Salt Spring lands to the Texada Land Corporation, which consists of two
Vancouver developers, Rob MacDonald and Derek Trethewey, via $20 - $50 million
financing from the Manulife Financial Corporation in Toronto. According
to documents revealed by investigative research analyst Adrian du Plessis,
Trethewey has $270,000 in debts including gambling debts to Caesar’s Palace
and debts from a proposed logging operation in Belize. The forest in question
lies on the slopes of the Fulford Valley, Mount Maxwell and Mount Tuam,
much loved for their visual beauty, and include a large part of the Mount
Maxwell watershed, which supplies much of the island’s water supply. 90%
of the lands containing sensitive, rare or endangered ecosystems. From the
day the land was bought, last November, Saltspringers have been frantically
organizing community meetings, reviewing the logging plans with the owners,
arguing for slower and more sensitive logging, monitoring the operations,
blockading the logging trucks – and starting the enormous task of raising
up to $30 million to buy the lands. The owners are estimated to be clearcutting
(or patchcutting) 4 - 5 acres a day. On the one hand, the owners have produced
a Code of Principles and hired Julian Dunster, a well-reputed ecoforester
who has set up and run locally controlled community forests; on the other
hand, the cutting is estimated to be 15 - 20 times the sustainable harvest
rate. There is no legislation at present which governs forestry on private
land. Right now, the islanders need all the help they can get. To find out
more, visit their superb website at www.savesaltspring.com,
or call Elizabeth White at (250) 537-2616. The same developers also bought
5,000 acres from the Thurn und taxis family at Horne Lake, near Courtenay,
which they are logging at a speed which is causing alarm and concern. The
von Thurn und taxis family, by the way, is listed as 249th in
the Forbes List of the World’s Richest people, worth $2 billion.
Spring is not the only Gulf Island suffering from the excesses of private
logging. On Denman, in 1997, Mike Jenks and his company, 4064, bought a
third of the island, which he started logging at high speed. In response
to the islanders’ desperation, in May 1999 the Islands Trust (which has
the objective of protecting and preserving the islands’ ecology) passed
the Sustainable Forest Land-Use Bylaw, which prohibits clearcutting, which
allowing sustainable harvesting. But now Mike Jenks has found a loophole
in Agricultural Land Reserve and the Right to Farm Act which allows land
clearing for a ‘normal farm practice’, which will allow his logging trucks
back in. He has applied for 7 permits to clear 1,346 acres (10% of the island)
"to develop a Christmas tree farm by natural regeneration". The
province has laid charges against 4064 that it has violated the new sustainable
forestry bylaws, and 4064 is suing the Islands Trust alleging that the Bylaws
are beyond the authority of the Trust. Please write to the Minister of Agriculture
(tel 387-1023, fax 387-1522), asking him to close this "Christmas tree"
loophole. For more information, see www.denmanis.bc.ca
task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of
compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its
and Natural Landscaping
design, set-up & maintenance
trees, berry bushes, heirloom veggies and native plants
Home Depot’s announcement that they will not be selling any timber that
has not been eco-certified by the Forest Stewardship Council after January
2003, the Swedish giant IKEA has announced that from September 2000, it
will ensure that it does not use any solid wood from ancient forests unless
it has been similarly eco-certified. Two more companies, HomeBase and Wickes
Lumber, have said that they will end such sales by 2001. These successes
are the result of a relentless two-year campaign by the Rainforest Action
Network (www.ran.org/), targeting the
"Foolish Five", hightlighting the importance of certification
as a way of protecting the world’s forests. Industry groups have come up
with their own system of certification, however, under ISO, so the politics
is quite hot. There is a major BC Forest Certification Forum happening in
Victoria March 30th – April 1st, when a lot of the key players
will be present. For details, see Diary, and www.ecoforestry.ca
Week 2000, April 21st – 30th
are you doing for Earth Week ?
the world know by sending your info for the 11th Annual Earth
March 31st. Call Doug, 383-5765
week course in
5th – May 24th
First Aid & Healing the Body
3rd – May 31st
Ronski Koski, 384-1411
Sharing in Victoria since 1997
us for a free info package !
OF THE MONTH :
Tollefson writes :
have been hearing a lot about SLAPPs (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public
Participation) lately. SLAPPs permit wealthy and powerful people to abuse
democracy and our democratic rights through the court system. The courts
can do little to curb this abuse, since the court rules generally allow
the person filing a lawsuit to decide how and when their case proceeds.
While SLAPP targets can recover some of their costs when the case is eventually
thrown out, this usually takes years. Meanwhile, the SLAPP filer has often
won the political battle that prompted the suit in the first place. SLAPPs
makes activism a very risky business. Targets never escape without paying
a steep price for speaking out, financially, reputationally and emotionally.
And the chilling effect of the pervasive threat of SLAPP suits hurts us
all. During the 1990s, B.C. has become infamous as Canada’s SLAPP-incubator,
as SLAPP targets on Galiano and Salt Spring Islands, in the Walbran, in
Victoria’s Cedar Hill neighbourhood and most recently in East Sooke (Silver
Spray) attest. For over six years, the B.C. government has been lobbied
to address the problem by passing anti-SLAPP legislation of the type on
the books in over a dozen U.S. states. Finally, we have a breakthrough.
During his leadership bid, Premier Dosanjh committed to introduce Canada’s
first anti-SLAPP law this Spring. Not only would this be a critical legacy
for activists in BC, it would be a landmark precedent for activists nationwide.
We need to ensure Premier Dosanjh honours this commitment as a key priority
for democracy and for the environmental community.
: Write to Premier Dosanjh, Legislative Assembly, Victoria V8V 1X4.
Fax 387-0087, Tel 387-1715. Ask him to priorize the legislation, and get
your friends to sign your letter. One small step for democracy.