Heavy industrial zoning inappropriate for Cowichan Bay

Tourism is our economic driver here in Cowichan - industry will never be our mainstay.

Heavy industrial zoning inappropriate for Cowichan Bay

Wondering why as the New York Times declares Victoria an urban jewel — one of the top destinations in the world, citing the Fisherman’s Wharf as one of its main attractions — would Cowichan Bay be considering changing their zoning to heavy industrial.

Cowichan Bay is an adorable and unbelievably attractive little seaside town that would be so much more valuable in Cowichan as a tourist attraction rather than a site for heavy industry.

Tourism is our economic driver here in Cowichan — industry will never be our mainstay.

The applicant, installed illegally on Crown-owned lease land is at the end of his work life — and if rezoned, this very valuable permit can then be sold to any one — even offshore interests.

All the huge efforts of citizens, government and NGOs over many decades to protect and restore Cowichan Bay and estuary, including all the eelgrass planting, driftwood removals, park and trail establishments, would all be wiped out by this endeavour. There are very few jobs to be created — this is a fraction of the kind of return that tourism will be bringing here if we protect our bay from incompatible uses. The Cowichan region is synonymous with tourism: we are a beautiful natural area that is inviting for visitors — and it’s just starting to take off. Why would rezoning for heavy industry even be considered?

We need to honour this beautiful natural environment that we are blessed to be in and celebrate it for what it’s really worth — it is priceless and not to be treated as something that’s disposable.

There are so many reasons to object to the rezoning of Cowichan Bay to heavy industrial but as co-founder of the Fresh Air Cowichan Team the issue of air quality is huge and must be considered as an additional environmental impact.

The rezoning of the quaint and beautiful Cowichan Bay to heavy industrial would be financially irresponsible and deleterious to the region. We need to focus on improvement, not the opposite. There are so many reasons why heavy industrial rezoning would be completely inappropriate for the beautiful Cowichan Bay and estuary.

Please attend the CVRD public hearing slated for the end of January/early February to show your support for the lovely Cowichan Bay.

Jennifer Lawson

Duncan

Cowichan Valley Citizen

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