If you love it, then you need to protect it.
The population of Squamish has ballooned over the past several years, attracting so many people who love the land, nature, and ecology. But if we love it, then we need to protect it.
For the past decade, there have been rumblings of building the Woodfibre LNG facility that would bring tankers into Howe Sound and a pipeline through Squamish. Woodfibre and Fortis are trying to stay silent on the issue, and why wouldn’t they? The project would have a huge impact on Squamish.
If you are into water sports, you will have to think twice before going into the Sound while it is filled with tankers. If you ever use the Mamquam FSR to access hiking, climbing, or mountain biking areas, you may have to dodge massive industry trucks. And if you even just go for a walk, fish, hunt, pick berries, or take any time to truly live in this beautiful place, then I hope you are ready for all of that to be changed by an LNG terminal.
And none of this even mentions the work camps that are being proposed to house temporary workers. In other industry towns, work camps are well known to have negative impacts on housing, substance abuse, and gender-based violence.
And those are all just the impacts on Squamish. If we talk about the site of fracked natural gas extraction, then we open up an entirely new can of worms. In northeastern BC, the fracking industry has had devastating impacts on water, land, and air quality.
In 2020, the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE) released a report that highlighted serious health dangers of fracking, including links to birth defects, cancer, and air pollution. The report mentions that people and communities living near fracking projects have increased rates of childhood leukemia, low birth weight babies, and congenital birth defects in people living close to fracking. As a town with a rapidly growing number of young families, these stories about fracking and LNG are incredibly alarming.
Woodfibre LNG would not only mean we are subjecting our own community to the impacts of fracking industry, but allowing this industry to expand and subject others to toxins and poisons we surely wouldn’t want to deal with ourselves.
This project is so expansive that it doesn’t matter what you love about the Sea to Sky, Woodfibre will have an impact. But if we love this land and want to continue loving the land, we will need to protect it. Woodfibre says they are starting to build in 2023, but there is still time to stop it. Contact your local politician and tell them to support decisions to protect Squamish.