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4th May 2021
EDITORS NOTE: There are two letters. The first is a personal letter and the last one is a Letter to The Editors of his Local paper.

Please do post this one! the Letter to Ed. on the Vancouver Island Water Watch site. I mean this is the biggest environmental disaster on the Island.

Rick James

Yes, it continues to roll on and on shouts of: "jobs and the and the Economy"
The on-going defence to keep rolling on with the full-out blitzing of not just the last of our Island's 1st growth but the more serious on-going environmental disaster which is never, ever mentioned in the media: all the 2nd and 3rd? growth being shaved off the high range timber throughout the Beaufort Range, you know, the Private Managed?!? Forests Lands owned by Mosaic. Of course, you have all seen the loaded trucks drivin' along the Island highway from Duncan through to Nanaimo? Yeah, there they are stacked on the trailers, many a 10 inch!?! diameter sticks of wood. Find it hard to believe? well check out the website: University of Maryland Global Forest Change and note where the bulk of Island's timber has being going down.

Anyway, to my point: what was once a major contributor to our Vancouver Island "jobs and economy" right up into the late 1960s, was salmon sports fishing
especially throughout Saanich Inlet and Cowichan Bay. Man oh man, the marinas, fishin' gear suppliers, guides, boat rentals, etc. etc. And do check out the attached and see how big an event the Solarium Derby held in Saanich Inlet was. Like note all the prize donors listed but what is particularly moving is to see how much money was donated to the Solarium Crippled Children's Hospital which is still out there on Arbutus Road in Saanich, the Queen Alexandra Centre for Children's Health.

As it happened, as a young teenager I stood out on Douglas Street with my dad selling tickets to the derby...Like there would be even a small lineup for them! Especially since one of the car dealers would always donate a brand new car for the draw that was held at the end of the derby day out at Hall's Marina.

So yes and indeed, all our salmon along east side of Vancouver Island are well on their way to going extinct (see my attached Letter to Editor from last year)...

And why haven't all them environmental types fighting to save the local orca population stood up and dealt with the reason why?? How they have been starving to death what with their food supply disappearing??

Enough for now,

Rick James
Royston, B.C.


Letter to Editor:

All that flooding! east side of Vancouver Island

Over the past 20 or so years now, we all can look forward to our local rivers here all along east side of the Island flooding over their banks during winter storms and then drying up through the summer. And the cause of these disasters? Well, I did talk with an old retired Comox Logging & Railway Co. hand, Jack Ware, back some years ago and asked him how it was that back in the early years of the last century Comox Logging was dropping huge 1st growth trees right into the Tsolum River not to far up river from downtown Courtenay and then booming them up? Well, he told me that, back then the valley was entirely untouched prime Douglas fir forests land where the understory humeric layer was very deep and intact. These rich soils and layers acted as an incredible sponge like material that soaked up the winter rainfalls to accumulate water and then gradually release it all throughout the year.

And as for today? “…There’s little water in all our rivers during the summertime…and they can flood like the bejeez’ during the winter
Now that all the old timber is gone” And as for today?

Well, Mosaic Forest Management who oversees all the privately owned timber lands sitting up behind us in the Beaufort range is continuing on with full out pillaging today of all the 2nd and 3rd?! growth timber lying throughout their timber claim. Find this hard to believe? Well, just check out the loaded logging trucks passing through the weigh station out on the Island highway just up past Duncan, like totally stacked high with sticks of wood from two to three and even one foot
in diameter.

This colossal disaster is all thanks to the Liberal provincial government’s rewriting of the Private Managed Forests Land Act back once they came to power in the early 2000s, which threw the door open to rampant, out of control timber harvesting by Island Timberlands and TimberWest corporate entities thanks to ‘Professional Reliance’. Basically the “fox was left in charge of the chicken house” and there’s been absolutely no government oversight of private forest lands at all since then. Well, our current NDP provincial government did initiate a review of this disastrous policy two years ago and a number of scientific studies were undertaken while local community input from affected residents lying beneath this logging claim was requested. But it would only seem what with nothing ever becoming of it this action, that it was all just a ruse in order that we will all would be convinced that were finally going to have a say in how logging is to be carried out – or not – on private forest lands. So the full out rampage of very young stands of timber continues to motor on full speed ahead. Some of the blame should be laid at the foot of the public’s obsession with all the growth 1st going down over on the west side and top end of the island. The well publicized protests and blockades resulting over past year, of course, are well away from all the privately owned timber over here in our neighbourhood, which, I’m sure, has left Mosaic absolutely delighted.

Find this all hard to believe? Well, check out www.universityofmarylandglobalforestchange to learn where most of our forest loss has occurred on the Island.

Rick James