Our Wild Spaces Are Not For Sale

Reference Number
1373
Date Submitted
2021-01-09 8:32:57 PM
Text

To All This May Concern,

(Which is everyone living in Alberta who drinks our water, enjoys our mountains, fishes our streams, hunts our lands, eats Alberta raised beef and crops, derives income for our tourism economy or travels here to appreciate what has been preserved) 

I work in an industry directly supported by our wild spaces, and I say our wild spaces are not for sale. Not for sale to anyone, especially not to foreign entities, not for millions and certainly not for the $66,000 and change the Alberta government recieved from Australia's Benga Mining for the Grassy Mountain Mining Project. Under the shroud of Covid, Jason Kenny's conservative government has quietly removed protections that have been in place for over 40 years that have safeguarded our mountain spaces. Our government has sold the rights to mine the sensitive Grassy Mountain area for metallurgical coal to Benga Mining without public consultation. Was the public excluded because they might object to a new Southern Alberta mine? What is there to be gained from this for Albertans?

It is well known that such mining pollutes watersheds, consumes natural water sources and carbon sequesterd grasslands, and leaves irreversible scars on the landscape. One only has to look to the West at the mines in BC to see a glimpse of Alberta's future if this mine proceeds. Declining native fish populations, contaminated drinking water and destroyed landscapes are what we have to look forward to, all for about 400 jobs and $66,000 bucks. Wildlife already on the species at risk list will be negatively affected, like bull trout and the westslope cutthroat trout that call home the rivers Benga will suck dry and contaminate. The natural cost alone should be enough to prevent such a project.

Since nature is apparently worthless to this goverment, let's talk about money. Why not publicly explore the effect this will have on our economy? The trickle down effect of this project will negatively affect ranching, farming, and outdoor tourism in a direct way and continue downstream. The millions of dollars spent by travellers in Alberta will decine as we sell out and destroy the wild spaces they come to visit. The farmers and ranchers who raise our food on the land where this mine is set to be will suffer higher costs to feed livestock and decontaminate water. Our collective carbon footprint will grow as we chew through lands that sequester carbon. Is this worth 400 jobs? What about the farmer's jobs, the rancher's jobs, the hotel and travel and food service jobs? The fishing and hunting guides' jobs? The thousands of jobs that directly and indirectly support the enjoyment of the outdoors in Alberta? What about my job?

I like my job and rely on it to feed myself. I love our wild spaces and I object to irreversible spoilage of the land at Grassy Mountain. I destest the thought that our government would capitalize on the destruction of our landscapes. I am saddened for those who are downstream and will lose their access to clean water. And I am hopeful that enough people will speak up against this ill-considered plan. That land belongs to all Albertans including me, and I say it is not for sale. 

Submitted by
Courtney Neal
Phase
N/A
Public Notice
N/A
Comment Tags
Fish and Fish Habitat Species at Risk Groundwater Quality Surface Water Quantity Surface Water Quality Terrestrial Plants Wetlands Current Use of Lands and Resources for Traditional Purposes by Indigenous Peoples Spiritual, Physical and Cultural Heritage Land and Resource Use / Tenure
Date modified: