Coal Fever

“Coal Fcoal feverever – Vancouver Island” will be airing on SHAW TV this weekend and next week.  Sun. Dec.1 at 8pm. Tuesday December 3 at 8pm (CV only) Thursday December 5 at 8pm (Comox Valley, Campbell River, Powell River) Saturday December 7 at 8pm (CV only) Sunday December 8 at 8pm (CV only)

It is also online at

Back in 1983 at the public hearings for the Quinsam Coal mine in Campbell River, there was a lot of opposition: even the mayor and council were opposed. The provincial government gave the mine the green light anyway. If local citizens, governments and businesses don’t want this type of resource extraction industry in their area, should it be allowed?

In the Comox Valley there are many people, including local government who are concerned about the potential problems from the proposed Raven Coal mine. Over 400 households in Fanny Bay and Ships Point depend on ground water and the Raven mine, if allowed, would be in the Cowie Creek watershed. The mine would be less than 5 km from the shores of Buckley Bay, right above the ferry terminal. Acid mine drainage, almost a certainty to get into the watershed, could destroy the shellfish industry in Baynes sound that employs 600 local people. Compliance Coal is now looking at the Anderson deposit in the Forbidden Plateau area and the Browns River watershed. They say they won’t develop it because of the “world price of coal”. What happens if the price of coal goes up?

This is an important story not only for people in the Comox Valley, but for all British Columbians. Yes we need jobs and the world will continue to burn coal for steel making and power generation but governments everywhere are looking for alternatives. The planet reached an ominous milestone this past year as Co2 levels reached 400 pts per million for the first time in 800,000 years:

“Passing the 400 mark reminds me that we are on an inexorable march to 450 ppm and much higher levels. These were the targets for ‘stabilization’ suggested not too long ago. The world is quickening the rate of accumulation of CO2, and has shown no signs of slowing this down. It should be a psychological tripwire for everyone.” – Dr. Michael Gunson Global Change & Energy Program Manager; Project Scientist, Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 satellite mission – NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

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