How to Help Us Help the Mountain Caribou
- The easiest and most effective way to help resolve both of the issues raised in this website – the precipitous decline of the Mountain Caribou in Wells Gray Park and government betrayal of a formal land-use agreement – is to write directly to Premier Christy Clark.
THE UPPER CLEARWATER REFERRAL GROUP LEARNED TODAY (9 FEB) THAT CANFOR EXPECTS GOVERNMENT APPROVAL FOR ALL OF ITS TEN CUTBLOCKS IN FEDERALLY-DESIGNATED CRITICAL HABITAT FOR CARIBOU WITHIN THE NEXT MONTH OR TWO.
PLEASE: SPEAK OUT NOW ON BEHALF OF WELLS GRAY’S DWINDLING, UNIQUELY CANADIAN MOUNTAIN CARIBOU BEFORE THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO SO IS LOST – LIKE THE CARIBOU – FOREVER.
Here’s Our Ask
- The Upper Clearwater Referral Group calls upon the B.C. Liberals to establish a moratorium on industrial logging adjacent to southern Wells Gray Park until such time as:
- 1. Wells Gray’s Mountain Caribou herds show definite signs of recovery. At a minimum, the moratorium area should correspond to lands mapped as ‘critical habitat’ on page 87 of the SARA report, Recovery Strategy for the Woodland Caribou, Southern Mountain population.
- 2. The Guiding Principles document is included as a formal government objective under the Kamloops Land and Resource Management Plan.
- The Upper Clearwater Referral Group also calls upon CANFOR to stand down from further logging in Upper Clearwater for the duration of the moratorium – and so live up to its widely publicized commitment to its social license. (See Don Kayne’s statement to special committee.)
- The B.C. Liberals are now in pre-election mode, and therefore likely to engage with voters on issues they’d otherwise tend to ignore. The plight of the uniquely Canadian Mountain Caribou is clearly such an issue – as shown by the B.C. government’s recent commitment to spend $27 million in public funds to take “the necessary steps to protect caribou habitat” (in effect attempting to repair an ecological imbalance created by their own environmental policies). Because they are less likely to pay attention to the Guiding Principles issue on its own, it is probably best to address this as a secondary issue in letters more directly concerning Mountain Caribou.
Four different B.C. governments have understood the need to provide lasting sanctuary for the now-doubly-endangered, uniquely Canadian Mountain Caribou: first by establishing Wells Gray Park in 1939 (Premier Tom Patullo, Liberal), second by extending it southward in 1955 (Premier W.A.C. Bennett, Social Credit), third by linking it northwards to Bowron Lake Park in 1995 (Premier Mike Harcourt, NDP), and fourth, most recently, by extending it southward again in 1997 (Premier Glen Clark, NDP). So why won’t the B.C. Liberal government do its part today to halt the decline of the world’s second largest remaining population of southern Mountain Caribou?
Please Send a Letter or E-mail to
- The Honourable Christy Clark
Premier of British Columbia
Station PROV GOVT
Victoria, BC V8W 9E1
- Be sure to include your name and mailing address!
What to Tell the Premier
- That you are concerned for the welfare of the endangered Mountain Caribou – Canada’s only uniquely Canadian large mammal.
- That you support the call for a moratorium on industrial logging adjacent to southern Wells Gray Provincial Park, as recently put forward by the Upper Clearwater Referral Group.
- That the Mountain Caribou population of southern Wells Gray Park has declined by about 60% since the B.C. Liberals came to power in 2001, i.e., from about 300 animals to fewer than 125.
- That logging outside the park is widely accepted as the ultimate cause of this decline.
- That in 2014 the proposed moratorium area was designated as critical caribou habitat by the Federal government under the Species at Risk Act.
- That notwithstanding this, BC’s Ministry of Forest, Land and Natural Resource Operations awarded several cutting permits within the past year, most recently in December.
- That the southern Mountain Caribou occurs almost entirely in B.C. and is therefore above all a responsibility of the B.C. government.
- That you are aware that BC’s Ministry of Forest, Land and Natural Resource Operations has granted permits in the proposed moratorium area without consulting with local residents, as required by a formal land-use agreement entered into with the residents of Upper Clearwater in 1999.
- That the B.C. Liberals are being short-sighted if they think they can walk away from formal agreements of this kind without undermining the two pillars of participatory democracy: respect and trust.
- That the B.C. government must now do the right thing and retroactively incorporate the Guiding Principles agreement as a Local Use Plan within the Kamloops Land and Resource Management Plan.
- Your experience of Wells Gray, your love of untouched landscapes, comparisons with other regions of the world you’ve lived in or visited, the importance of wild places to contemporary society losing touch with the living green world, etc.
- Encourage the Premier to leave a green legacy by establishing a moratorium on industrial logging adjacent to southern Wells Gray Park until such time as the its caribou herds show definite signs of recovery.
If Sending an E-mail, Please CC to One or More of the Following
- Hon. Catherine McKenna, Federal Minister of Environment & Climate Change
- Hon. John Horgan, NDP Opposition Leader
- Hon. Andrew Weaver, Green Party Leader
- Hon. George Heyman, Opposition Spokesperson for the Environment
- Hon. Mary Polak, Minister of Environment
- Hon. Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources
- Hon. Terry Lake, MLA, Kamloops – North Thompson
- Barb Nederpel, NDP candidate, Kamloops – North Thompson
- Dan Hines, Green Party candidate, Kamloops – North Thompson
- Peter Milobar, B.C. Liberal Party candidate, Kamloops – North Thompson
- Donovan Cavers, Green Party candidate, Kamloops – South Thompson
- Hon. Todd Stone, MLA, Kamloops – South Thompson
Next up: Greenwash Alert