Our Valley needs activists

Time to reconsider and restructure our ways, on a global scale, or head towards more disasters

Our Valley needs activists

Democracy only thrives when there is civic engagement: public members who care enough to learn, gather, question, and speak up. Business interests, so beloved by some CVRD directors, already have influence on policy, with power and money. Although they are important in the community, their interests are often financial, instead of holistic. Community interests are longer and broader, including protecting our precious lands and waters that sustain life.

We activists are not power-hungry politicos, or from one party or philosophy, we are advocates for better policies, guided by humane and natural principles. We are volunteers who act on our beliefs — helping to clean up, plant, feed, study and preserve our Valley. Community and planning boards are paid public servants who should listen to us all; we speak for the many, the voiceless, and the future generations. The words economy and ecology have the same root: the household of the Earth.

As the region grows rapidly, many thoughtful people want land use and development steered towards community and liveable values. Most of us came here for the region’s beauty and friendliness. Some are alarmed at the many giant apartment complexes near the malls — just like Langford — that we never voted for. (The need for affordable housing doesn’t rest on mega developments by outsiders who take profits and leave taxpayers to pay for increased water, sewer, road, and police infrastructure.) Some question if developing and carving up farmland is in our long term interest, or if excessive pavement adds to flooding, or if logging clearings full of broom add to fire risks. These are land use questions that business can’t answer, but planners would be wise to consider them now. All regulations were made by governments, for good reasons: to control greedy development and resource extraction. That’s why slowing down approvals, not stopping projects, makes sense to many people and directors. Bigger is not always better.

We belong to the Earth, Not the other way around. We must respect the plant, animal, and microbial realms that support all life. In my 50 years here, I’ve seen small fishing and logging become big business and ruined the resources forever. We now foolishly rely on other countries for food and allow our rich rivers and bays to become drained and polluted. Meanwhile, human caused climate change wreaks havoc on our lands, air, fires and water. No wonder many of us, and our children, are alarmed and angry at the big picture: poor “business as usual” choices resulting directly in a damaged future.

Perhaps the pandemic will teach us that people’s and planet’s health matters most for survival. We now see that everyday workers keep our systems running, and both rich and poor countries have to work on poverty and health issues. I think it’s a turning point: time to reconsider and restructure our ways, on a global scale, or head towards more disasters.

The best answers are not in our politicians or our devices, they are in our hearts. We need everyone to be more active in shaping our Valley and our world. I hope that as our rights are restored, we will meet again and advocate that our wisdom lead us forward, as one community.

Laurel Circle

Sahtlam

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Shore RCMP arrests five suspects in multi-jurisdictional drug trafficking investigation

Cocaine, prohibited loaded handgun, weapons, stolen vehicles seized

Documentary on legendary Chief Tzouhalem to be filmed in Cowichan

Film is the latest project by Drama Camp Productions

Bottle drive Saturday to assist sick Cowichan teenager and family

Sammy Dubois, 14, disgnosed with rare neurological disorder

Editorial: Alternative approval process is not the enemy

Not everything should go to a referendum.

Provincial success stands out at Cowichan Secondary awards

Wrestling, basketball and field hockey teams earn recognition in shortened year

B.C. identifies 20 new COVID-19 cases, travellers specified in count

Pandemic total 3,028 cases, 51 people from outside Canada

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

Filing deadline in RCMP sexual-harassment class-action extended due to COVID-19

Plaintiffs now have until January 2021 to submit claims for up to $222,000

Jamie Bacon pleads guilty to charge in Surrey Six case

The plea brings an end to a complex legal case that has spanned more than a decade

Hefty undeclared driver charges piling up, ICBC warns customers

Average extra penalty $2,971 after an at-fault accident

Survey, hotline launched amid probe into racist blood-alcohol guessing game at B.C. hospital

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has been appointed to lead an investigation by Health Minister Adrian Dix

RCMP disarm man experiencing mental health crisis

The male pulled a knife on officers and then held it to his own throat expressing a desire to die

B.C. appeals judge’s decision to leave three clubhouses in Hells Angels hands

The province has filed two notices of appeal related to the B.C. Supreme Court decision

Conservation officers relocate Spirit bear known to roam northwestern B.C.

Bear roamed valley north of Terrace for many years

Most Read