Open burning is burning our lungs
Many of us choose to live on Vancouver Island and the Cowichan Valley because of its pristine beauty, charming atmosphere and organic lifestyle. We pride ourselves on our health-conscious, laidback approach to life. We embrace passionately all sorts of outdoor pursuits including cycling, hiking and camping, not only for the obvious health benefits, but also to commune with nature and reduce our carbon footprint on this increasingly fragilized planet we call home.
So, why are we burning green, wet yard waste in mid-January, in and/or near residential areas, with blatant disregard for public health, well-being and smoke control regulations?
Why do we insist on filling our Valley, our neighbours’ yards, houses and lungs with thick, toxic smoke and particulates, when we have yard waste recycling facilities available to us, mostly free of charge, throughout the region?
OK, I get it: it’s easier, more convenient and saves us the drive to the “dump”! I can honestly say that I have experienced better air quality in Bangkok, Manila and China, than recently on our beloved Cowichan Valley.
Come on fellow Islanders. It is time to clean up our air and act responsibly. After all, we only have one planet…and one set of lungs.