Letters

Trying to keep logging trucks out of parks

I’d like to address some points in your article ‘Seabird seeks woodlot access’ which largely quoted Mr. Ted Holtby of Tamihi Logging, the company representing Seabird. The article was about the proposal to remove main roads from the jurisdiction of Sasquatch Park so logging trucks can ship timber to market. Just to be clear, I’m not against logging, but rather a huge supporter of keeping at least a very tiny area of the world’s treasures free of industrial development. As was the BC government when it designated Class A provincial parks such as Sasquatch Provincial Park.

Here are some points in the article that I saw as inconsistent with previous statements by Mr. Holtby, things I am aware of, and documents on file:

i) proposed for removal from the park are a choice of one of two routes.  The other route not mentioned in the article is development of an overgrown road, currently used as a trail, that runs right beside Deer Lake campsite...easily within earshot and dust-shot of campers and kids on bicycles.

ii) you quoted Mr. Holtby as saying “there are no other routes" [out of the logging area].  That statement would have been made while engineering reports looking at non-Sasquatch Park routes were being drafted.  We should be hearing about those "no other routes" quite soon.

iii) Mr. Holtby claimed that this road was a logging road originally.  If that’s true, I’ll just add that values changed.  Now it’s a park.

iv) The article stated “The cut would be very minimal”.  I don’t know if this is true for the Seabird/Tamihi Logging license, but Mr. Holtby has stated publicly that he expects many more timber licenses in the area. The stated volume quoted in Tamihi’s proposal is 975,000m2 of harvestable timber in that area.  At 50 cubic meters (high estimate) of timber on each truck, that equates to over 10 trucks per day, every single day, for 10 years (for those crunching numbers, don’t forget the trucks have to return to the logging site).  If trucking is limited to ‘shoulder seasons’ as Tamihi proposes, expect that to triple.

v) and finally, about the blitz of letters opposing trucking logs through the park Mr. Holtby said died shortly after his presentation to Harrison Hot Springs Council:  this is not true.  Many of us have written Mr. Holtby expressing our opposition, and requested further clarification and information as per the Boundary Adjustment process.  He was unresponsive, so we moved on to engaging with others.  There are volumes of letters on file, just not in Mr. Holtby’s inbox.

Todd Kabaluk

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