Editor, The Times:
BC Timber Sales (BCTS), a crown corporation whose task it is to auction timber harvested from Crown Lands, on behalf of B.C. citizens cites forest sector safety, reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, and sustainable forest management as objectives attached to its economic goals.
A recent ad, in the Clearwater Times, describes the Development of a Pest Management Plan that proposes to use four herbicides, including glyphosate (often sold under the trade name Roundup). Glyphosate has grabbed a lot of headlines, over recent years, because of its alleged, and proven, toxicity not only to humans, but to other organisms in the environment.
Glyphosate has been linked to various cancers, Alzheimers, Autism, birth defects and other health conditions.
The Guardian newspaper reports that residues of glyphosate show up in 45 per cent of European agricultural topsoil and that three-quarters of the Germans tested have urine samples that measure five times the legal limit for water. It also shows up in wheat products and breakfast cereals. Millions of Europeans have called for a ban on Glyphosate. Unfortunately, it has been given a last-minute, 18 month extension on its total European ban.
Glyphosate is recognized as a non-selective herbicide, meaning that its effects not limited to the target species.
How can BCTS make its claim to safety, reconciliation and sustainability when it proposes to use glyphosate on public lands, many of which are unceded territories, all of which run off into the creeks and rivers, with the consequent impacts on fish and marine life and which will, in time, pollute ground water?
What about the impacts on plants in the under story, such as berry bushes, food to bears and many people?
What about impacts on other wildlife? Have these concerns been addressed by an independent investigator?
That would be highly doubtful.
It is abundantly clear that BCTS is offering only lip service to its lofty, highfalutin objectives.
Now is the time for Clearwater to return to its traditional role as a guardian of the environment and to call for a complete ban on the use, not only of glyphosate, but of the other herbicides listed in the BCTS plan. This plan could be the foot-in-the-door which is a preamble to the arial spray programs that plague other parts of the province.
Let BCTS know your thoughts. Make no bones about it.
The only acceptable plan, for herbicide use on public land, is a complete ban.