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West Kootenay EcoSociety Opposes Site C Dam

Aerial view of the relocated surplus excavation material area on the south bank of the Site C dam project. Bottom, Aerial view of the inlet cofferdam, the south bank excavation, and Moberly River. — BC Hydro photos

People, opposed to the completion of the Site C dam, are lining up to urge the NDP government to pull the plug on construction of the hydro mega project.

And now the West Kootenay EcoSociety is joining the “no” side after passing a resolution opposing the Site C dam.

The West Kootenay EcoSociety has also made their views known to Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall, who is also the Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

The resolution coming in a media release reads:

“The EcoSociety is opposed to the completion of the Site C dam in light of the adverse impact to salmon, culture, and agriculture experienced in the Kootenay-Columbia system, and in light of alternatives like low-impact renewables that provide equal or better service to British Columbians.”

Greg Powell, Chair of the EcoSociety’s Board of Directors, said when dams were built on Columbia and Kootenay rivers, studies were almost non-existent on the environmental and cultural impacts of those mega project.

That as all changed today.

“We know better today,” Powell said.

“Site C would destroy the Peace River Valley, drowning critical wildlife habitat and agricultural land and massively infringing the rights of Treaty 8 First Nations.”

Matthew Carroll, co-Executive Director of the EcoSociety, said studies have shown there are better ways to generate power with less of an environmental impact.

“We simply don’t need new mega-dams in BC to power this province,” he said.

“We should cancel Site C and move to 100% renewable energy sources. The NDP campaigned on their Power BC program, and through theRenewable Kootenays initiative, we’vealready modeled howwe can transition off fossil fuels using off the shelf technology and no new dams.

“Let’s get on with it.”

The price tag of the Site C dam has soared from $8.3 billion to $10 billion and could rise even higher to $12 billion or beyond.

It was thought that was going to be an announcement Thursday by BC Premier John Horgan to proceed or shelve Site C.

However, no announcement was forthcoming.

The EcoSociety is asking its members to contact their MLA, as well as key cabinet ministers, expressing their desire that the BC government cancel the Site C dam.