I agree with Kim Goforth that the discharge of effluent into Quesnel Lake is despicable. There is a huge billboard welcoming people to “Quesnel Lake Country” south of town — this is ironic — how can we feel OK to use this beautiful body of water to advertise the natural wonders of this area while simultaneously approving its use as a dumping ground for Mount Polley Mine.
My understanding of the resounding local silence around both the breach and the proposal to use Quesnel Lake as a long term sludge pond for the mine is that people in this area have a bad case of Stockholm Syndrome.
I think local people are just surviving and that’s about it, and that there is a belief that the only way to do that is to sidle up as close as possible to the Mount Polley Mining Corporation and Imperial Metals and remember not to bite the hand that feeds them.
My heart goes out to the employees at Mount Polley — these are people that live and work in this area, who are raising families here and are being told that they’re getting a good wage.
It’s a drop in the bucket compared to the profits reaped by the guys in suits in the cities who wouldn’t dream of funnelling poisonous mine effluent into the lake in their backyards.
These guys aren’t going to lose any sleep at night when a drop in ore prices puts a teeny weeny little dent in that never ending flow of wealth, they’re just going to hand out pink slips and leave Mount Polley employees high and dry on the shores of a polluted lake in Nowhere, B.C.
Like Kim, I wonder: Where are our voices locally?
Don’t we live here because we love it here? Don’t we have a responsibility to speak out against the desecration of this beautiful area and our right go to work everyday with some integrity?
If there is anything I know, it is that money is not going to help anyone or anything when it comes to saving Quesnel Lake.
I think the mining company and the B.C. Government should be saddled with legal fees and mandated to start spending ridiculous profits on taking local mining in a new environmentally conscious and sustainable direction.
It should be ordered to fund research and provide training for Mount Polley employees as well as jobs for engineers, tradespeople and labourers to build new infrastructure and start over in a way that we can all be proud of.