Terrace angler says Liberals have squandered their chances

He says industry and business should not be advanced at the expense of the environment

Dear Sir:

Do the BC Liberals deserve another term in office? Christy Clark has openly talked about establishing a legacy for herself.

She has often referred to former Premier W.A.C. Bennett as the premier who built the province with dams, highways, and mega pulp mills and now she wants to follow in his footsteps.

She does not understand that we are now living in a very different era. British Columbians are more informed and very concerned over the future of mismanagement and squandering the provinces natural resources. It is at her peril to ignore those voices.

In the past voices were muted by the power of politics and industry.

Since 2005, three megaprojects have been front and center. The Enbridge oil pipeline sapped our energies.

It created much animosity because the power of industry got its way. It did not care about rivers, fish, wildlife, water, air quality, the marine environment and the people who cherish and depend upon those resources for quality of life, food or for livelihoods.

The BC Liberals could have squashed the Northern Gateway before it got off the ground. The enormous waste of human energy and finances should have focused on an alternative plan for economic and social development that would have been in concert with the lifestyles and natural resources of our region.

Unfortunately the genie is out of the bottle. We are now dealing with two gigantic oil refinery proposals.

Meant for the Kitimat Valley at the (so called) DuBose Industrial Site they would remove many hectares of very productive forest from the land base if one of those refineries is built. During this election, the Site C dam on the Peace River and the LNG industry are dominating the headlines.

They are intertwined with the completion of Site C being the inducement for an LNG facility. The plan for a mega LNG industry was hatched prior to the 2013 provincial election. No effort was made by the provincial government to discuss LNG development with local people.

What happened in 2013 was a political strategy. Jobs and prosperity would over ride all local objections. It has not happened and many people and businesses are affected.

Christy Clark and her colleagues do not have a green bone in their bodies. Had common sense prevailed and one LNG plant and one pipeline for Kitimat and possibly one of each for Prince Rupert been proposed, there likely would not have been much of a backlash.

Careful planning, with true local involvement, caution and consideration would have created lower expectations and greater harmony.

If the former site of the pulp mill in Port Edward had been chosen for an LNG plant away from the Skeena estuary, what a difference it would have made.

Two pipelines would mean fewer river valleys being ripped apart, such as the Class 1 Section of the Zymoetz River and the world famous steelhead river, the Kispiox.

Terms for exporting natural gas should require those companies whose pipelines pass close to communities such as the Hazeltons, to supply them with natural gas.

The BC Liberals have had the opportunity to make wise decisions.

They’ve squandered their chance and have injected so much nasty and divisive politics across our province they must be replaced.

Jim Culp,

Terrace, B.C.

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