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Old 02-22-2007   #1
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Seattle, Washington
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Big news in Sea to Sky Corridor | Public Hearing | Ashlu

Ledcor is applying for permits AGAIN, ex post facto ...

Just got this from our boy Bryan, who's been super active in the fight against BC's Bill-30, which is currently allowing the dewatering the Ashlu & has *many* other world-class streams shakin' in their shoes. Read on, it's super important:

"Hey Everyone,

I realize this comes late and it would be very difficult for some of you, but it is REALLY important in the scheme of things here in the Sea to Sky corridor. If you care about rivers and kayaking in BC, and want to have rivers to paddle in August, you really have no excuse for not coming up here on Monday. In fact you should come ski on Sunday, because it is looking epic!

** Monday Feb 26 at 10:30 there is a public hearing on the Ashlu here in Pemberton, BC.**

This is a very interesting turn of events and many feel it will set big precedent with the Squamish Lillooet Regional District and local government. I will try to explain.

Bill 30 was enacted to allow Ledcor to start construction on the Ashlu, *despite* being denied zoning by the SLRD (local government) BY AN 8-1 VOTE. As many of you know, they are well underway with construction on the Ashlu. BUT...Ledcor has been taking a lot of bad PR and many in the community have tagged them as "operating without permits". Their future in this corridor and on other projects (hello...they own the water license for Callaghan!) depends on them manufacturing local public consent.

Well guess what is happening.

**They have gone back to the SLRD after the fact and applied for the permits.**

The same permits that they were denied after all the public hearings in years past. If no one shows up in Pemberton on Monday and supports the local government, it will be very easy for this to turn into another back door deal, where Ledcor walks away with permits and ultimately permission from the local government. We have to stand behind the SLRD on this issue. I can't explain how critical it is.

I'm starting to uncover a lot on this issue working on a documentary of the Ashlu and micro-hydro in the Sea to Sky. Hopefully there will be some funding to keep efforts moving forward. So many people have dropped out of the fight, but we can't give in!

Thanks for your help. I will have a lot more coming at you soon, but I have been swamped in trying to get things done locally as well. Pass this email along. A good showing is really important.


Please pass this on & post to other appropriate forums. If you know anyone in the region, please let them know to take a sick day on Monday 2/26 in support of BC's rivers.

We're also working on a form letter or something like that .. some way that you can actually pitch in and help, desktop activist style, so stay tuned for a follow-up!

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Old 02-22-2007   #2
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OK, here's how you can get involved. Sorry for the wordiness of the posts. (cross-posted from boatertalk):

Here's an example of a letter suitable to send to important contacts within the SLRD:

Dear SLRD Board Members and Staff,

It has come to my attention that Ledcor Corporation is seeking Temporary Use Permits for industrial uses in the Ashlu River Drainage in conjunction with the construction of an independent power project. I have been following this issue closely since the public hearings started 4 years ago. I strongly supported the due process efforts by the local government to hear all sides and eventually deny re-zoning for the Ashlu IPP. When the Province enacted Bill 30 and construction started in the Ashlu it was incredibly disappointing to see the efforts of the SLRD board and staff disregarded. I encourage you to stand behind the original decision that was validated by the due process of public hearings and continue to deny Ledcor permission from the local government and community to be operating in the Ashlu Drainage.

Here are the email addresses for SLRD contacts:


Feel free to copy/paste/edit/add/whatever, as you see fit. Don't forget to "sign" it & date it. Try to deliver your opposition in a neutral or non-kayaker voice. Why? Because it's just too easy for Ledcor & non-boaters to marginalize our interests. All ledcor has to do is say, "hey, we're actually LENGTHENING your paddling season by dewatering the creek! We're making it safer for kayakers." ... and the ignorant public believes that. This has been their legacy thus far -- you can refer to their propaganda site for the evidence (Wigston, you got duped by this the other week, but I didn't have time to respond to your post.)

If you come at them from an ecological platform (salmon & griz habitat, loss of old growth, sedimentation, etc), or an economic platform (the $ is leaving the province & not hitting the tribe's pockets), or a tourism platform (squamish calls itself the outdoor rec capital of canada) .. it might resonate better with the people who you are talking to ...

Also, you should check out Grace's interview with Bryan on LVM for more info: http://lvmvideo.com/ (just click on Al G's swollen mug).

And lastly, if you really want the full poop on the issue, like, if you really want to write an informed communication, you can always go here: http://www.hydrofactsbc.ca and http://www.Ashlu.info

PLEASE REMEMBER, this letter is hitting the local governments who have ALREADY DENIED Ledcor the zoning again & again, on behalf of the local constituencies. If Ledcor gets denied now/again, they will likely be facing a PR nightmare that could be our window of opportunity to possibly shut them down on future projects ... ahem CALLAGHAN.

ok, i really gotta get back to work now.

thanks yall,

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Old 02-22-2007   #3
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For those of you who don't know, this area of BC ranks as one of the top most concentrated zones of quality whitewater ANYWHERE in the world. Ledcor is a corporate hydro-scheme machine and anything we can do to hurt their public image will be good for the rivers of BC. They have taken the backdoor through lobbying in regional politics to de-water the Ashlu and any other drainage they want, against the wishes of the local government and population. They are re-applying for this permit simply as a public relations tactic and a risky one at that. They have already started logging in the Ashlu so they aren't doing it to see if they really can build start this hydro-project. They are doing it to gain public support because they are alredy taking a beating in the press. Let's not let them have their cake and eat it too. Desktop activists unite! Most of us in CO can not get to BC by Monday to attaend the meeting but we can FLOOD THEIR OFFICE WITH LETTERS OPPOSING THE LEDCOR LICENSE. Now take a few seconds and DO IT.
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Old 02-22-2007   #4
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More addresses

More key contacts for the SLRD:
Mayor of Lillooet, Christ'l Roshard 250-256-4289 or cityhall@lillooetbc.com
Mayor of Pemberton, Jordan Sturdy 604-894-6135 or jsturdy@pemberton.ca
Mayor of Squamish, Ian Sutherland, 604-892-5217 or isutherland@squamish.ca
SLRD Planning Manager, Steven Olmstead 604-894-6371ext228 or solmstead@slrd.bc.ca
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Old 03-05-2007   #5
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Todd - Any updates on this?
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Old 03-05-2007   #6
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here's bryan's notes from the meeting:

"The SLRD approved the temp use permits for the Ashlu IPP, but it was an interesting morning. First off it was not a public hearing, it was just the bi-weekly meeting open to the public. However the fact that there was good turn out turned the issue more towards the audience which was good. Olmstead read a couple of the letters that were submitted and said there were over 35 written submissions this week. Almost every SLRD member had a comment. Showing their frustration over Bill 30 and that they have worked really hard to deny this project. However Bill 30 was clear in stating that the SLRD cannot impede this project in any way. The province has threatened them and one member even went so far as to say if they had not denied the Ashlu zoning Bill 30 would never have happened. Basically they overwhelming showed support and then said that their hand are tied behind there backs. It was an interesting tone and pretty much was we expected. I do think the good turn out showed that this issue is not going away. The poor fucking SLRD. They just keep hearing it. They will never forget the Ashlu. "


basically, the members or the SLRD realize that by doing the due diligence of public input informing local/regional policy (denying ledcor the zoning to proceed with the project), they "provoked" the province into enacting Bill 30 into legislation. at least that's the puppet/master view that the province & the energy industry wants to perpetuate. so what it came down to is: (a) the local/regional govt acknowledges that the water resources in the Sea to Sky are precious & threatened; (b) the ashlu was the single most sought after resource, but that it deserved protection; (c) the inital 2 zoning denials on the ashlu "provoked" the province (on behalf of ledcor) to enact undemocratic heavy-handed legislation; (d) the SLRD is beholden to provincial budgets & authorities so that any more hiccups in process would further "provoke" the province into punishing the evil-doers by tying up budget $ & just generally making operations slow & painful for the region; (e) SLRD felt like their hands were tied & had to grant Ledcor the temp use permits in spite of the overwhelming local/regional opposition.

As i've said all along, this issue is so much bigger than the ashlu. yeah, we *heart* the ashlu, maybe as much as any river anywhere, but the real issue is one of suppression of democracy and corporate influence in governance. the Sea to Sky is the bullseye in this battle, with the goal being nearly every free-flowing stream in lower BC (credit the ample gradient & ample precip for that). the rutherford was taken out 2 yrs ago, the ashlu in 06/07. the callaghan is next. add those to the list of streams that are already under license & we're left with nothing. And who can blame the energy developers really? it's such a cheap game to get into, there's ZERO gov't or agency oversight or public input (as long as they claim that output is below 50MW), & they can pre-sell their "product" to BC Hydro long before construction even begins.

bryan's been hard at work on a documentary on the whole thing. interviews with some incredible information sources. more info will come out on that as we proceed ....
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Old 03-13-2007   #7
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Got my letters out

Thanks for all the updates Todd, If those Ledcor Biatches keep it up we might have to go up this summer and do a little old fashion Monkey Wrenching, we'll get the chunderposse out and shove a few paddles up some asses
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Old 04-02-2007   #8
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Ok, so the public comment period has been over for a real long time (original post) .. but I figured since this sticky is still up, it's probably the most appropriate place for me to add this info.

Bryan just updated trl with a brief Ashlu update, including a couple photos & an embedded video short featuring aerial footage shot last week of the "progress" in the Ashlu drainage. It's a heartbreaker.

fyi, it is now known that Callaghan & Skookum creeks are two of the next independent power projects planned in the sea to sky corridor. And Ledcor people routinely check our blog for posts on the Ashlu & slanderous remarks against them .. so feel free to leave comments *there*, as opposed to here.

click here T h e R a n g e L i f e it's the top post on the blog.


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