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The Sunshine Coast Regional District put forward the following emergency resolution to delegates at the Union of B.C. Municipalities Conference taking place at the Vancouver Convention Centre this week.  The resolution passed quickly by the delegates Friday September 20th, 2013.  In meetings with Minister Thomson, Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, Minister Thomson said a moratorium on existing projects would not be supported, but he will commit staff resources to start discussions about planning for Howe Sound.  Minister Thomson did state to the 18 Municipal and Regional District representatives present in the room, that he personally did not want to see the recovery of the marine life in Howe Sound go backwards.  MLA Jordan Sturdy, West Vancouver, Sea to Sky was present in the room.

This is excellent news for Howe Sound.  Municipal leaders around Howe Sound are meeting next on Wednesday September 25th for the Howe Sound Community Forum.  Planning for Howe Sound will take up most of the day’s agenda.  Over 50 people will be attending the meeting being held at the Gleneagles Community Centre hosted by the District of West Vancouver.


Howe Sound Management Plan                                     Sunshine Coast Regional District

WHEREAS all local governments around Howe Sound are currently dealing with recent multiple referrals and applications for gravel, liquid natural gas, coal and bitumen;

AND WHEREAS Howe Sound is a sensitive, ecologically significant area of unparalleled scenic beauty, and provides important ecosystem services for various First Nations, senior and local governments, and is without a land and marine use plan to facilitate a coordinated approach to land and marine use planning;

AND WHEREAS there has been no discussion between the local governments and the Squamish First Nation regarding the cumulative potential impacts;

AND WHEREAS there is a growing concern regarding the future of Howe Sound as commercial, industrial and recreational uses expand without an approach for assessing the cumulative impacts of those increased uses, thereby putting recent progress of significant ecosystem recovery at risk:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM urge the provincial government to support the development of a Comprehensive Management Plan for Howe Sound that facilitates a coordinated land and marine use planning process between First Nations, senior and local governments, and other local bodies to ensure ongoing recovery and responsible land use planning within Howe Sound.


4 Responses so far.

  1. We at Mcnab Creek Estates are very pleased at the Efforts of the Howe sound Society. Save our Sound, we don’t want a Gravel pit!!

    Tourism and recreation creates more tax dollars than and one company can offer. There is no shortage of gravel in the lower mainland.

    This so unnecessary. Capital YES for a regional plan for Howe Sound. Lets protect and encourage the recovery that has already

    started. Lynne Zimmerman McNab Creek resident

  2. Cliff and Linda Wood says:

    We fully support the formation of a plan for the management plan for Howe Sound. A framework is needed through which projects like Burnco can be assessed for environmental impact, job creation and sustainability and economic benefit. We will be away during the two dates for public consultation. Please feel free to affix our names to a document supporting the formulation of such a plan

  3. Graham Parkinson says:

    The Howe Sound environment is much more valuable than the rest of the BC coastline as it is the only section of recovering shoreline near the Millions of urban users. The increase in sealife as a result of the Britannia Mine cleanup (I worked on this project for 5 years) is incredible. I have never seen so much rich biological activity (orca’s, grey and humpback whales, increase in salmon, increase in herring spawn etc. etc.) in the 50 years that we have owned property in Howe Sound. Our group of 24 families on Bowyer Island is very concerned about the potential impacts of the Burnco proposal on; effects of shipping and scow loading noise on marine mammals, sediment loading on eel grass beds at McNabb Creek, wave effects on the shoreline and our communities from gravel carrier traffic, increased lighting and effects on the dark skies of Howe Sound.

    We are certainly against this proposal which would only provide profits for an Albertan company and only a few jobs for operators, and result in a loss of jobs in the growing marine tourism sector.

    Regards, Graham Parkinson, Bowyer Island

  4. Robert Thompson says:

    I am pro development and pro jobs, but want to see balance. The biggest concern to me is not the gravel pit but the infrastructure visible from the pristine waters. Just a few miles to the west is the shipping complex or Port Mellon. That is where the gravel should be shipped from. It should go overland to the Port Mellon docks. Sure it would increase costs but it would save the McNab estuary.

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