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They’re Killing the Peace River Valley Now

They’re Killing the Peace River Valley Now

The $9 billion flaying, then drowning of a fertile zone has begun. We still don’t know why.

Random Acts of Kindness comic panel
Photos by Garth Lenz.

Last month the B.C government commenced the destruction of the fertile Peace River Valley, awarding a civil works contract worth $1.5 billion as construction crews methodically denuded the landscape of trees.

Taxpayers will be on the hook for at least $7.5 billion more by the time the devastation is done. The question looming larger than ever is whether the Peace River Valley must be sacrificed at all.

A range of rising voices insist that every argument made by the government for rushing to build a new mega-dam on the Peace River fails to hold water.

The government-dubbed “Site C Clean Energy Project” will flood scores of kilometers of valley river bottom (much of it valuable Class 1 agricultural land) and eventually generate enough power, says the province, to light up the equivalent of 450,000 homes.

According to one press release, the dam “will provide British Columbia with the most affordable, reliable clean power for over 100 years.” Jessica McDonald, president and CEO of BC Hydro, explained that “Site C is essential to keeping the lights on while maintaining low rates for our customers.”

Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines added that, “It’s clear that to keep rates low, we must choose the option of building Site C.”

Critics also say the high-risk dam, which could eventually cost $13-billion, won’t lower rates for citizens but raise them.

They also explain that hydroelectric dams are not climate friendly or “clean” by any scientific measure.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

After Summer of Drone Dramas, BC Calls for Crackdown

After Summer of Drone Dramas, BC Calls for Crackdown

Province tells feds all UAVs should be registered and pilots certified.

Drone-BC

The British Columbia government wants all drones to be registered and pilots certified, according to a submission to a federal panel looking at the expanding technology. Whether it’s reports of near-misses with airplanes or spying on neighbours, Victoria is in a race to catch up with the burgeoning technology.

The submission is in response to federal Transport Minister Lisa Raitt’s call for opinions on proposed amendments to drone regulations in Canada.

Drones weighing 35 kilograms or less can fly without authorization, but operators must conform to Canadian Aviation Regulation rules and respect federal, provincial and local laws about trespassing and privacy. Those who fly larger drones or for commercial purposes must apply for special flight operations certificates from Transport Canada.

”The advantages and opportunities that [unmanned aerial vehicles] present must be balanced with government’s interest in protecting the personal safety and privacy of its citizens,” said the B.C. report.

”Rapid development, growth and adaption of UAV technology are challenges to both the aviation sector and the public that require the attention of policy makers and regulators. Of particular concern to British Columbia is the unsafe use of UAVs in proximity to other aircraft, violation of personal privacy and the current inability for provincial or municipal enforcement.”

The report includes a list of civil aviation near-misses with drones in 2014 and 2015, mostly around B.C. airports, and a much-publicized allegation that a drone-sighting near Oliver, B.C. wildfires grounded water bombers for more than four hours for safety reasons in August. The only description of the drone in the Civil Aviation Daily Occurrence Reporting System, filed Sept. 1, was that it was ”fluorescent orange-coloured from above.”

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Trouble With Tailings: Toxic Waste ‘Time Bombs’ Loom Large Over Alaska’s Salmon Rivers

There are a few unarguable truths about mine tailings, the pulverized rock, water and sludge left over from mineral extraction — mining is a messy business, the leftovers have to be dealt with forever and it’s impossible to guarantee against another tailings dam failure such as the Mount Polley catastrophe.

In B.C., there are 98 tailings storage facilities at 60 metal and coal mines, of which 31 are operating or under construction and the remaining 67 are at mines that are either permanently or temporarily closed

That means communities throughout B.C. and Alaska are looking nervously at nearby tailings ponds, which sometimes more closely resemble lakes, stretching over several square kilometres, with the toxic waste held back by earth and rock-filled dams. The water is usually recycled through the plant when the mine is operating, but, after the mine closes, water, toxins and finely ground rock must continue to be contained or treated.

It’s the realization that tailings have to be treated in perpetuity that worries many of those living downstream, especially as the Mount Polley breach happened only 17 years after the dam was constructed.

The concept of forever boggles people minds. In one thousand years is the bank account still going to be there? These people are going to be dead,” said Chris Zimmer of Rivers Without Borders.

There are time-bombs up there without a plan to deal with them. Are they going to be able to build a mine that’s going to keep its integrity forever?”

It raises the question of whether there should be any mining in an area that is vital to five species of salmon and sustains the livelihoods of so many Alaskans, said Heather Hardcastle, a Juneau fisherman and coordinator of Salmon Beyond Borders.

This is why this region of the world is so globally significant and why we care so much,” said Hardcastle, who is among those pushing for the issue to be referred to theInternational Joint Commission.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

RCMP planning mass arrests at pipeline protest camp, northern B.C chiefs fear

RCMP planning mass arrests at pipeline protest camp, northern B.C chiefs fear

RCMP say they are just working to keep the peace

A dispute over energy projects and aboriginal rights is heating up at a pipeline protest camp in northern B.C. where First Nations leaders fear police are planning mass arrests.

Since 2009, Wet’suwet’en people, activists and environmentalists have been building a remote camp in northern B.C. to block several major pipeline projects. They include:

  • Chevron’s Pacific Trail Pipeline.
  • Enbridge’s Northern Gateway project.
  • Shell’s TransCanada Coastal GasLink pipeline project.

Shell plans to build a 650-kilometre pipeline from B.C.’s gas-fracking region to a proposed LNG site in Kitimat.

Spokeswoman Shela Shapiro told CBC News the company supports the right to peaceful protest, but called the RCMP after Unist’ot’en protesters prevented workers from using a public road on Thursday.

The camp is about a two-hour drive southwest of Houston, B.C. on rough forest roads.

Shapiro said Unist’ot’en protesters have told TransCanada staff to leave the area “on a number of occasions.”

Yesterday afternoon, the Unist’ot’en Camp posted a message on its Facebook page.

“Coastal Gaslink crews showed up at Chisolm checkpoint. Threatened checkpoint crew that a police report will be filed as they do not have consent to enter the territory.”

‘Non-violent occupation’

Shapiro told CBC that TransCanada  is “absolutely willing” to work with camp leaders, saying the company has made more than 90 attempts to speak with the hereditary chief and Unist’ot’en spokesperson.

The Unist’ot’en camp calls itself a “non-violent occupation” of traditional aboriginal land. Unist’ot’en camp protesters routinely stop traffic on remote forest service roads near the camp and turn back oil and gas crews.

Companies trying to use the area say they’re trying to use public roads to access Crown land, and some have ferried their crews to nearby worksites by helicopter.

Now, the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs says top RCMP officials have told them a major police crackdown is imminent.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Living Downstream of B.C.’s Gold Rush: Alaska’s Fishermen Fear End of ‘Last Wild Frontier’

No fish in the car, warned the rental car attendant at Juneau airport, with the weary tone of someone who had cleaned too many fish guts out of returned vehicles. It was a warning underlined by signs in hotels pleading with guests not to clean fish in the hotel bathrooms.

Fishing is in the DNA of Southeast Alaskans, not only as a sport and common way of filling the freezer, but also as a driver of the state economy. So it is not surprising that the perceived threat presented by a rush of mine applications on the B.C. side of the border has brought together diverse groups who want B.C. to give Alaska an equal seat at the decision-making table and to have the issue referred for review to the International Joint Commission.

I can’t conceive of not being able to fish for salmon. The grief would be too much to fathom,” said Heather Hardcastle, co-owner of Taku River Reds who has been commercial fishing for most of her life.

We share these waters and we share these fish. There has to be an international solution,” she said.

 

Jill Weitz, Trout Unlimited outreach coordinator, wonders why Canadians are not taking the risk of pollution from the mines more seriously.

This is one of the largest king salmon runs in Southeast Alaska. How is this not significant?” she asked, looking over the side of a boat into the waters of Taku Inlet.

It is a cruel joke that, for the second time in history, the richest minerals in the world have been found in the richest salmon habitat in the world, said Lindsey Bloom, as her gillnet dried in front of her Juneau home

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

Fracking triggered 2014 earthquake in northeastern B.C.

Fracking triggered 2014 earthquake in northeastern B.C.

Quake one of world’s largest ever triggered by hydraulic fracturing

Fracking triggered a 4.4-magnitude earthquake in northeastern B.C. last year, CBC News has learned, making it one of world’s largest earthquakes ever triggered by the controversial process.

B.C.’s Oil and Gas Commission confirmed the cause of the earthquake in an email statement to CBC this week, saying it was “triggered by fluid injection during hydraulic fracturing.”

The 4.4-magnitude quake was felt in Fort St. John and Fort Nelson in August 2014. It was preceded by a 3.8-magnitude earthquake in late July, also caused by fracking.

B.C.’s Oil and Gas Commission told CBC that several companies were doing hydraulic fracturing in the area at the time, and several more were disposing of fracking waste.

But the commission says it was Progress Energy’s operations that were “associated with triggering this event.”

Hydraulic fracturing, often called fracking, is the process of injecting water, sand and chemicals at high pressure deep underground to break rock and free gas.

Since the 2014 earthquake, Progress Energy has been ordered to reduce the volume of fracking fluid being used, and the company has complied, according to the commission.

As well, new seismic equipment has been set up in the area. No new earthquakes have been detected in the immediate area.

Sign of things to come?

Progress Energy is owned by Petronas of Malaysia, which also owns Pacific NorthWest LNG, the firm planning to build a giant liquefied natural gas export facility near Prince Rupert, B.C. supplied by gas fracked in northeastern B.C.

 

Matt Horn, with clean energy advocate the Pembina Institute, calls the significant earthquake “another warning sign for what could be down the road.

“If B.C. goes down the LNG road in a big way, it’s really important when we’re debating LNG proposals, we’re eyes wide open…. to both the benefits and impacts. Increased earthquakes is one of those impacts.”

B.C.’s Oil and Gas Commission declined a taped interview, providing only background information by email.

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Another Industry Reported Quake in BC’s Fracking Grounds


Another Industry Reported Quake in BC’s Fracking Grounds


Regulator says tremor likely industry-caused, but company says it’s too soon to say.

Progress Energy, an arm of the Malaysian oil company Petronas, temporarily shut down operations at a wellsite after a 4.5 magnitude earthquake hit an area 114 kilometres northwest of Fort St. John on Aug. 17.

B.C.’s oil and gas regulator said the earthquake was likely caused by hydraulic fracturing but “has yet to determine the cause of the event.” Progress Energy reported the tremor on Monday. No damages were reported to the regulator.

“The Commission is working to obtain a reasonable event depth from local seismic-monitoring data and is collecting more information about the event as part of its investigation,” B.C. Oil and Gas Commission spokesman Allan Clay told The Tyee.

David Sterna, Progress Energy’s director of external affairs, said the company has since resumed operations with approval from the regulator, and that “despite certain media speculation, it is too early to determine whether Monday’s seismic activity was a natural occurrence or related to hydraulic fracturing activities.”

The epicentre of the earthquake occurred three kilometers from a site where Progress Energy was conducting a multi-stage frack into the Montney Shale, a large swath of land stretching across northeast B.C. into northwest Alberta.

In B.C., any fracking operation that measures a magnitude 4.0 tremor or greater within a three kilometre radius of the drilling pad must report the event to the regulator and suspend operations. Alberta operates a similar “traffic light” system for earthquakes in the Duvernay Shale around Fox Creek, Alberta.

That region, which has experienced industry-made quakes for two years, saw a 2.6 tremor in early August.

The shale gas industry injects fluids and sand at high pressure into deep and shallow wells to crack open difficult oil and gas deposits. The injections create a network of cracks that can also connect to water zones, other industry wellsites and faults.

The reactivation of these faults can then trigger an earthquake, sometimes days after the fracture treatment, scientists say.

 

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

Petronas’s Silence on BC LNG Act Sends Disquieting Signal

Petronas’s Silence on BC LNG Act Sends Disquieting Signal

Busy passing project terms, BC forgot to check on events abroad.

As the British Columbia legislature passed its “historic” Liquefied Natural Gas Project Agreements Act on July 21 after a lively eight-day debate, the most important player for which the special summer session of Parliament was convened kept an aloof — and worrying — silence.

Petronas, the Malaysian state energy firm with a 62 per cent stake in a consortium proposing to build a US$36-billion LNG project near Prince Rupert, did not offer a public thank you or congratulatory statement to the B.C. government of Premier Christy Clark for its efforts and hard-earned legislative victory.

The Pacific NorthWest LNG (PNW) consortium’s other shareholders, Sinopec (10 per cent), Indian Oil Corp (10 per cent), Japan Petroleum Exploration (10 per cent), China Huadian (five per cent) and PetroleumBrunei (three per cent), have been equally quiet.

It was left to PNW to issue a brief statement that the act — followed by the July 23 ratification of 25-year agreement terms covering royalty, income tax credits and carbon emissions — “brings us one step closer to building Canada’s first world-scale LNG facility.”

“The remaining condition of our final investment decision, environmental approval from the government of Canada, is being worked on diligently with First Nations, stakeholders and government representatives.”

Petronas’s silence is significant as B.C.’s elaborate undertaking to create, debate and pass the LNG act had been made in direct response to the company’s high-profile complaints and threats to call off the project if it did not receive legal certainty and the offer of generous investment terms. Petronas did not reply to a request for comment on B.C.’s new act.

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

BC’s Gas Export Hopes Face ‘Scandal that Ate Malaysia’

BC’s Gas Export Hopes Face ‘Scandal that Ate Malaysia’

Asian nation’s PM, key to $36 billion LNG bid by Petronas, in corruption probe.

The prime minister of Malaysia, who is central to British Columbia’s liquefied natural gas development ambitions, is the subject of a major financial corruption scandal rocking his country.

Earlier this month The Wall Street Journal, citing documents from government probes, reported that investigators suspected that almost $700 million in cash had been wired through state agencies, banks, and companies linked to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

The company is a state-owned development vehicle chaired by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who also serves as the country’s treasury minister.

Investigators believe the $700 million eventually found its way into Najib’s personal accounts and served as a slush fund for the last election. Malaysia has few rules on campaign donations or election spending.

Najib is the top authority overseeing Malaysia’s state-owned oil company Petronas, whose massive potential investment in B.C. liquefied natural gas (LNG) was greenlit by the provincial legislature earlier this month.

Now, The Australian and other news sources are saying reports of corruption have paralyzed the Malaysian government. “The scandal that ate Malaysia” is how U.S. business news agency Bloomberg is dubbing the financial brouhaha.

 

The debacle threatens to undermine the nation’s economy, according to an expert writing for East Asia Forum: “Malaysia’s international credibility is on the line, as is its currency, access to foreign capital and future economic prosperity.”

To date a task force investigating the 1MDB allegations has already frozen half a dozen bank accounts in Malaysia.

Petronas key to Clark’s LNG ambitions

In May of 2014, Premier Christy Clarksat for a photograph with Najib, central to any deal she sought with Petronas. The meeting was part of an eight-day trip to Malaysia and Hong Kong to promote LNG development after Clark made election campaign promises that LNG would create 100,000 jobs and erase the province’s debt.

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

B.C. fires: More than 100 new wildfires in 24 hours

B.C. fires: More than 100 new wildfires in 24 hours

Lightning, heat and high winds combine to create challenging conditions for firefighters

In just 24 hours, 115 new wildfires have flared up across B.C. — most of them in the Kamloops area and the southeast part of the province.

“Lightning was a huge driver of increased fire activity yesterday and that would be from the lightning activity we saw Sunday night,” said Ryan Turcot of the B.C. Wildfire Service.

Nine communities are under evacuation alerts or orders, according to the wildfire service.

Kelsey Winter, also with B.C. Wildfire Service, said crews are monitoring erratic winds expected to hit the region later today.

“[We’re] making sure we get as many resources as we can today, before the winds pick up, and try to get some containment on those fires,” said Winter.

West Kelowna fire still growing

A fast-moving wildfire on Westside Road near West Kelowna’s Shelter Cove area has now grown to about 430 hectares, up from 175 hectares earlier today and 30 hectares yesterday.

 

West Kelowna fire still growing

A fast-moving wildfire on Westside Road near West Kelowna’s Shelter Cove area has now grown to about 430 hectares, up from 175 hectares earlier today and 30 hectares yesterday.

Most of the growth has been uphill, away from nearby homes, but the fire has remained difficult to contain on a steep slope, with high winds and a lot of dry fuel.

“Wind is our number 1 enemy out here,” fire information officer Dale Bojara said Tuesday afternoon.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

Nine LNG Questions for British Columbians to Ask Their Politicians

Nine LNG Questions for British Columbians to Ask Their Politicians

Pressing queries in light of high-stakes Petronas agreement just passed.

The British Columbia legislature has just ratified a long-term agreement to lower royalties and taxes for a $38-billion liquefied natural gas project proposed by Malaysia’s state-owned oil company, Petronas.

Pacific Northwest LNG, a consortium that includes Petronas and Chinese refining giant Sinopec, intends to build an export terminal on Lelu Island near Prince Rupert. The Lax Kw’alaams have opposed the project as a threat to salmon and the Skeena River.

The unprecedented agreement, which critics havecharacterized as a crass economic giveaway, guarantees Malaysia’s state-owned company low royalties and low taxes for LNG over a historic 25 years.

Martyn Brown, former chief of staff to B.C. premier Gordon Campbell and a top strategic advisor to three provincial party leaders, has described the agreement as “environmentally reckless, fiscally foolhardy and socially irresponsible.”

The deal effectively makes it difficult for future governments to set LNG-specific carbon taxes or to impose new environmental rules aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions. It locks in tax credits for 25 years. And it offers no job guarantees for British Columbians.

In addition to the terms of the agreement, politicians and citizens should now be asking nine critical questions about any LNG development in the province.

 

1. Have LNG projects become uneconomic?

Many LNG analysts now think the world is oversupplied with the product and that price volatility warrants project deferrals, especially for high-cost proposals in North America. Othersreckon that capital for major projects is rapidly drying up. Carbon Tracker, a non-profit group of financial analysts concerned about climate change, justreported that investors will likely mothball tens of billions of dollars in LNG investment because “there is a finite amount of fossil fuels that can be burnt over the next few decades if we are to prevent dangerous levels of climate change.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

Fracking Industry Has Changed Earthquake Patterns in Northeast BC

Fracking Industry Has Changed Earthquake Patterns in Northeast BC

Impact on groundwater and migrating gases mostly unknown, critics say. A special report.

New research and presentations by both provincial and federal scientists show that the shale gas industry, which the B.C. government hopes will eventually supply proposed liquefied natural gas terminals with fracked gas, has caused more than a thousand earthquakes in northeast B.C. since 2006 and changed the region’s seismicity.


The earthquakes, ranging in magnitude from 1.0 to 4.3, include six events higher than 4.0 and more than 20 events that shook buildings and moved furniture in places like Fort St. John. Several events caused casing damage to horizontal wells. Moreover, industry-caused tremors remain an ongoing geological revolution for the region.

Earthquakes with a magnitude of about 2.0 or less are called microquakes and can’t be felt at the surface. Events above 3.0 can be felt on the ground, and tremors just larger than 4.0 can cause minor damage. A great earthquake, capable of extensive damage, typically measures a magnitude of 8.0.

Scientists originally thought that hydraulic fracturing wouldn’t trigger anything more than microquakes. But now that the technology has set off magnitude 4.4 quakes in Alberta, scientists are grappling to determine what kind of hazard industrial tremors might pose to pipelines, dams and other infrastructure.

At Upper Halfway, a community northeast of Fort St. John, residents have described the tremors as a series of crashes and bangs comparable to someone driving “a truck into the side of the house.”

The shale gas industry involves the injection of highly pressurized fluids into wells to crack open difficult oil and gas deposits. The injections create a network of cracks that can also connect to fault zones. The reactivation of these faults can then trigger an earthquake, scientists say.

 


Due to limited monitoring, industry and government lack a full understanding of how the wave of quakes is changing the flow of groundwater in the region or the migration of gases such as methane, radon and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere throughout northeast B.C.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

BC LNG Deal Lets Petronas off Hook for Two Kinds of Emissions

BC LNG Deal Lets Petronas off Hook for Two Kinds of Emissions

Carbon ‘free pass’ imperils BC’s climate targets, say critics.

The B.C. government plans to subsidize Malaysian gas giant Petronas to the tune of $16 million, in part due to a promise to exclude a significant chunk of the greenhouse gas emissions from the Pacific NorthWest LNG project from compliance penalties, DeSmog Canada has learned.

British Columbia’s politicians are in a special summer sitting at the legislature right now to debate Bill-30, the Liquefied Natural Gas Project Agreements Act, which will allow the government to enter into a $36-billion agreement with Petronas and pave the way for B.C.’s first major liquefied natural gas export plant, located near Prince Rupert.

Under the terms of the 140-page deal, the province would compensate Pacific NorthWest LNG if future governments raise income tax rates for LNG operations, add carbon taxes that specifically target the industry, or make changes to rules on greenhouse gas emissions. That could result in the provincepaying out $25 million a year or more.

While the compensation clause has commanded the lion’s share of attention, DeSmog Canada has learned that the B.C. government has quietly excluded two sources of Petronas’ carbon emissions from compliance standards, which will result in the province paying out millions of dollars in subsidies.

‘Under the radar’ change

In promising the world’s “cleanest” LNG facilities, Premier Christy Clark set benchmark requirements for the facilities’ carbon emissions. If a company fails to meet the benchmark, they must pay compliance penalties into a climate offset or green technology fund.

However, the province has also created an incentive program, which promises to pay a significant portion — between 50 and 100 per cent — of those compliance fees if companies come close to meeting the benchmark.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

TPP Deal Puts BC’s Privacy Laws in the Crosshairs

TPP Deal Puts BC’s Privacy Laws in the Crosshairs

If negotiators get their way, data could more freely flow across borders.

British Columbia’s privacy laws are in the crosshairs of the nearly completed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. If you’re wondering what the heck data privacy protections have to do with trade, you’re not alone. Public awareness of the far-reaching, 12-country negotiation is scant, with polls showing three-quarters of Canadians have never even heard of the TPP.

Unfortunately for privacy advocates in B.C. and the rest of the country, the advancement of “digital free trade” is a high priority for the U.S. in the negotiations. This carefully chosen euphemism conjures up the free flow of information, the convenience of cloud computing, even escaping Internet censorship. It all sounds so positive.

The thing is, the TPP e-commerce chapter aims not only to free the movement of digital goods, such as software or downloadable music, but also to enshrine the rights of companies to freely move data — including records of financial transactions, consumer behaviour, online communications and medical histories — across borders. This personal data is much sought after by marketers, insurers and intelligence agencies that can build detailed profiles and histories of individuals, frequently without their knowledge or informed consent.

U.S. negotiators are pushing hard to eliminate national laws in TPP countries that require sensitive personal data to be stored on secure local servers, or within national borders. This goal collides with the B.C. Freedom of Information and Privacy Act and similar regulations in Nova Scotia, which are listed as “foreign trade barriers” in a 2015 United States Trade Representative (USTR) report.

According to that report, the B.C. privacy laws “prevent public bodies such as primary and secondary schools, universities, hospitals, government-owned utilities, and public agencies from using U.S. services when personal information could be accessed from or stored in the United States.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

 

BCers to Province: Stop the Senseless Water Giveaway

BCers to Province: Stop the Senseless Water Giveaway

Surrey residents pay $1,630 per million litres; why not Nestle or frackers?

“The province is not seeking to make a profit from water.” — BC Environment Minister Mary Polak

No kidding — not at $2.25 per million litres of cold, clean B.C. water!

But seriously minister, do you think that waiting till 2016 just to start charging multinational giant Nestle, other water bottlers, oil and gas frackers, amusement parks, garbage dumps and everyone else who wants millions of litres of water is appropriate?

Because tens of thousands of British Columbians are outraged their province will be giving away water for pennies. And until then it’s free.

Forget about making a profit — when Nestle can buy their 265 million litres for $596.25 — you aren’t even covering the cost of government writing up and mailing the invoice!

And Polak is actually proud of it.

“We don’t sell water. We charge administration fees for the management of that resource,” she toldthe Legislature in February without any hint of irony.

But Surrey residents pay $1.63 per 1,000 litres at home; at those rates Nestle would instead be paying $1,630 per million litres and over $431,950 for what it bottled last year.

And Vancouver’s flat water rate for non-metered houses is $568 this year.

Drought, outrage set in

So the Nestle giveaway is why last week’s column went viral.

And it’s also why a petition from consumer activists SumOfUs.org has over 200,000 signatures demanding B.C. charge higher water rates.

But there’s a faint hope clause — the B.C. Legislature just returned for an emergency sitting to pass laws allowing Petronas to develop its liquefied natural gas project.

If the BC Liberal government cared as much about B.C. water as they obviously do about LNG we could get the water rates increased in less than a week with opposition party cooperation.

Water is in exceedingly short supply as the heat wave and drought continue to force more H2O restrictions.

 

 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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