As a friendly Christmas gesture, Chris Ludwig, president of the BC Mountaineering Club (BCMC) and co-founder of Backcountry BC, presented the Fed with a copy of a 1,500+ page Freedom of Information document related to the Tetrahedron Provincial Park public process—such as it was. Fed members will recall that this has been a longstanding issue for one of our members, the Tetrahedron Outdoor Club, with whom we have worked for decades.
Thanks to Backcountry BC for sharing and for breaking the large (over 1500 page!) document into manageable chunks.
The public comments from the Tetrahedron Provincial Park Planning Process
The Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) has requested BC Parks consider either a boundary adjustment to exclude Chapman Lake (a main feature) so it can be drained for more water or downgrading the park’s Class A status. The SCRD demands more water to avoid drought and shortages while they continue to approve more development.
Backcountry BC filed an FOI with BC Parks to obtain all the public input received from two Open Houses BC Parks organised. The comments are from those who attended the meetings held May 2nd in Sechelt and May 24th, 2018 in Roberts Creek as well as those who chose to comment via an on-line option provided by BC Parks. Some of the on-line responses look to be submitted by a singular “pro development” group.
The SCRD gets its drinking water from Chapman Lake, inside the park. For over 20 years, the SCRD neglected to develop other potential water sources and storage options outside the park. Now, it has asked government to remove land from the park to blast a trench and draw down Chapman Lake levels up to -25 ft, to access more water. The $5 million Chapman expansion project would permanently degrade the source area ecosystem and the water quality. Overusing the source that currently supplies 85% of RD water will not ensure the long-term water supply needed for the growing population. The SCRD can, and must, diversify its source and storage options that exist outside the provincial park. This Sunshine Coast Conservation Association website identifies many other options.
Tetrahedron Provincial Park protects both a vital component of biodiversity heritage and drinking water quality for future generations. Only about 3% of land on the Sunshine Coast is protected in parks, likely the least protection of natural habitats in BC.
The Fed has been attempting to meet with Minister Heyman to discuss alternatives to destroying this provincial park but he is balking.
Removing land from this park could undermine the integrity of the entire BC Parks system. Will your provincial park be next?
Here’s what you can do:
Please review the comments and consider sending a strong message to the Minister of Environment that:
- the SCRD can and must diversify water source and storage options outside the park
- all options to change the status of Tetrahedron park are unacceptable
- we expect the Minister to act as a steward of the BC Parks system and ensure the Tetrahedron remains protected in its entirety as a Class A Park
Via email to the Minister of Environment with copies to BC Parks staff:
Subject: Maintain Class A park designation for Tetrahedron Provincial Park
To: Minister George Heyman ENV.Minister@gov.bc.ca
cc: Jim Standen, Assistant Deputy Minister Jim.Standen@gov.bc.ca
cc: Vicki Haberl, Regional Planning Head Vicki.Haberl@gov.bc.ca
cc: Jennie Aikman, Regional Director Jennie.Aikman@gov.bc.ca
cc: Tim Janzen, Senior Parks and Protected Area planner Tim.Janzen@gov.bc.ca
Barry J Janyk
Executive Director, FMCBC