Watershed Watch Highlights Concerns Over Taseko Mine Project in Letter to Premier

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Watershed Watch put its concerns on record in a recent letter to the Premier of British Columbia concerning Taseko Mines Limited’s Proposed Prosperity Gold-Copper Project.  The project has already been rejected by the Federal Government over concerns of land and water pollution, land animal habitat disturbance, and destruction of native trout habitat, as well as by First Nations over the misuse of their traditional land and water.  Sports fishers have also protested the removal of this productive native trout sports fishery.

In the letter, Watershed Watch highlights:

“Recently a new and compelling aspect to this dispute was revealed in a study by UBC and Fisheries and Oceans Canada. This study warns that the gradual warming of fresh water bodies in BC, as a consequence of climate change, is endangering the survival of our salmon. Salmon do not tolerate high temperatures. However, the authors also conclude that those salmon that return to the most distant and higher interior lakes have specific physical and cardiac adaptations that enable them to survive warmer waters. In particular, the report states that the Chilko salmon run is the sub-species that can survive the climate change, while most others will fail. This opinion is reiterated in an article in the Canadian Geographic magazine.”

To summarize our opinions:

  1. The subspecies, Chilko run salmon, which are judged to be the most likely to survive the inevitably warming water, as noted in the two attached addenda, would be subject to a threat of extinction due to toxicity created by the mining.
  2. It does not seem to be good economic policy to sacrifice the livelihoods of the West Coast fishing fleet operators and employees in order to provide jobs for potential mine employees.

 

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