We believe that the public has a right to control the Chapman and Gray Watershed Reserves for the purpose of providing safe drinking water, unencumbered by any obligation to industrial interests.
The current Ministry of Forests standard for logging companies, such as Sechelt Community Projects Ltd., that operate in community drinking watersheds, requires that they must not have an adverse affect on public water treatment plants "unless this unduly restricts the flow of timber". This is the only legal water quality standard that Sechelt Community Projects Ltd. must comply with in its "community" forest operations in our watersheds.
Under the new Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA), the Ministry of Forests and Sechelt Community Projects Ltd. will not have any legally enforceable obligations to inform or consult with water users (the community) or water license holders (the Sunshine Coast Regional District) when planning industrial activities in the Chapman and Gray Watershed Reserves.
The Sunshine Coast Conservation Association is concerned that this "community" forest license has been granted without meaningful open review of these issues or any real consultation with the community about its most precious resource: water.
We believe that the Joint Watershed Management Agreement is in the best interests of the region and has the support of every community on the Sunshine Coast. Signed last October, the Sechelt Indian Government and the Sunshine Coast Regional District agree to co-manage the Chapman and Gray Watershed Reserves for water values. Will the District of Sechelt honour this agreement?
The SCCA encourages all citizens to pay careful attention to issues related to our drinking watersheds. For details about the Sechelt Community Forest, our Community Watersheds and the Joint Watershed Management Agreement.