The Sunshine Coast Conservation Association (SCCA), Alliance for Democracy (A4D) and Sunshine Coast Senior Citizens (COSCO) is seeking support from the community.
“There is presently a proposal for the barging of low grade, thermal coal from the Fraser River up to the north end of Texada Island. This will involve eight million tonnes of coal per year passing by our fragile beaches and water front,” said the combined groups in a media release sent to Coast Reporter this week. “They will travel past Thormanby island and then between Texada, Lasqueti, Jedediah and the other Sabine Channel islands. There are multiple provincial parks, eco reserves, threatened species and habitat throughout this region.
“This coal will be hauled in open barges that will permit the escape of potentially large volumes of dust that will travel through the air to be deposited on our waters, shores and lands. At this time the provincial government is not requiring an environmental impact assessment and is only considering the storage areas at both ends as a regulatory issue under the mines act. No consideration is being given for the barge route and all the communities, islands, habitat and species along the way. This, along with how this export will contribute to global climate change, should concern all of us.”
This Sunday, Jan. 19 from 2 to 3:30 p.m., the groups are holding a organizational meeting at Roberts Creek Library.
“Following our public information meeting held in November, it was decided by the groups involved that we should approach our members and the general public to form a working group to continue addressing this issue,” said the press release. “This would allow for a focused, rapid approach with support of the SCCA, A4D, COSCO when needed. This would be an independent, self-regulating group, communicating directly with the agencies involved. Prepared materials and letters will be considered for distribution with the above mentioned groups’ names and logos, when appropriately vetted and approved by their respective boards.”