On Thursday and Friday a small flotilla of boats from Kingcome Village, Gilford Village and Alert Bay, with the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s research vessel “Martin Sheen” in the background, handed eviction notices to four Cermaq Canada salmon farms. Hereditary chiefs say notices will be issued to all 27 farms in their territory.
With chiefs in traditional robes, drumming and singing, the group ignored efforts by Cermaq employees to prevent them from landing, handed over the notice and then held a cleansing ceremony and wild salmon barbecue at one of the farms.
“Our people have spoken. We want salmon farms out of our territory,” said chief councillor Willie Moon, the first to pull into the farm off northern Vancouver Island.
The National Energy Board is fundamentally broken.
That was a point repeatedly highlighted by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during the 2015 federal election — and one confirmed for many with recent revelations that former Quebec premier Jean Charest had privately met with senior NEB officials while on the payroll of TransCanada.
A cute graphic of white houses with rooftop solar panels is featured on the U.S. Department of Energy’s website. “Solar Homes Sell for More Money,” the government tells viewers, citing studies that show solar adds an average US$15,000 to the resell value of a home.
“Just like a renovated kitchen or a finished basement increases a home’s value, solar has been shown to boost home valuation and shorten a home’s time on the market.”
In contrast to the U.S. government’s cheery promotion of solar, BC Hydro’s webpage called “Solar Power & Heating for Your Home” has a blurry photograph of a man putting on a sweater, and technical information that begins with the somber news that it will take a B.C. homeowner at least 20 years to recoup the cost of a solar installation.
The Arctic’s Baffin Bay and Davis Strait region is home to seals, bowhead whales, polar bears and up to 90 per cent of the world’s narwhals. The area’s marine waters also provide habitat for 116 species of fish, such as Arctic char, an important dietary staple for Nunavut’s Inuit communities.
Although the area is crucial to Inuit for hunting and other traditional activities, the federal government has approved underwater seismic blasting by a consortium of energy companies. They plan to fire underwater cannons from boats to map the ocean floor for oil and gas deposits, in preparation for offshore drilling.
The blasting, approved by Canada’s National Energy Board in 2014, is meeting fierce opposition.
The mountain village of Valemount, British Columbia, located along the Rocky Mountain trench is eyeing the nearby Canoe Reach hot springs — one of the hottest surface hot springs in Canada — as a source of geothermal heat and renewable electricity generation.
“Valemount used to be a typical northern forest town,” Silvio Gislimberti, head of the Valemount Geothermal Association, told DeSmog Canada. “But now we would like to create a geothermal industrial park.”
An old mill that shut down in 2007 provides a near perfect location for Borealis Geopower, the company working with the community to make something of the region’s geothermal potential.
Craig Dunn, chief geologist with Borealis Geopower, said Valemount is one of the best-known hot spots for geothermal development in all of Canada.
“The resource opportunity is pretty incredible all the way down the Rocky Mountain trench, including opportunities like Radium and Fairmont, which are all a part of the system.”
Valemount has a “competitive advantage” according to Gislimberti.
Senior dam safety officials with the public hydro utility even worried for a time that natural gas companies could drill and frack for gas directly below their Peace River dams, which would kill hundreds if not thousands of people should they fail.
Above the stone fireplace in the comfortable Saanich home, photos of grizzly bears are pinned in a casual collage.
Cubs are shown frolicking in the grass, a curious bear stands on his hind legs looking through a camera lens and, jarringly, at the top, is a massive grizzly lying lifeless in the grass, eyes closed, claws digging into the dirt, as two jubilant hunters smile into the camera.
The photo, typical of those found in hunting magazines that promote the chance to travel to Super, Natural B.C. to kill grizzles, provokes a visceral response among hunt opponents and a newly-formed group wants to harness that gut reaction.
Justice for B.C. Grizzlies is led by a small core of volunteers who, for years, have tried to end the trophy hunt by arguing the facts — such as the uncertainty of population numbers, studies that show bear viewing generates far more in visitor spending than bear hunting and — what should be the clincher for politicians, but, curiously seems to be ignored — polls clearly demonstrate that British Columbians are overwhelmingly against the hunt.
In the leadup to next spring’s provincial election, the group is aiming for hearts and minds by asking B.C. voters and political candidates to consider the hunt from a moral and ethical stance.