Some participants in Saturday’s flotilla that expressed its opposition to coal being barged between Texada and Lasqueti islands.

Some participants in Saturday’s flotilla that expressed its opposition to coal being barged between Texada and Lasqueti islands.

Boaters protest off Lasqueti Island over Texada coal operation

More than 150 people, 36 boats participated in Sabine Channel event

  • Oct. 7, 2014 6:00 p.m.

In response to the announcement of the approval of permits for the shipment of U.S. thermal coal through Greater Vancouver, the Fraser River, and up the Salish Sea to Texada Island, citizens in the region protested by Occupying the Sabine Channel on Saturday.

According to organizers, more than 150 people, primarily from Lasqueti Island, population 350, came out in boats, and on the shoreline, to object to the Salish Sea being the staging ground for the export of dirty Thermal coal from Wyoming and Montana through B.C. to Asia.

Disallowed by U.S ports to date, protest organizers said this coal will come by train across the border to the Fraser/Surrey docks (up to two trains per day, each train up to one km long.) From there, the coal would be reloaded onto open topped barges and transported down the Fraser River, and up the very narrow Sabine Channel between Lasqueti and Texada islands.

The open-topped barges would then be off-loaded by conveyor at the Lafarge limestone quarry site on Texada Island, and then re-loaded onto 965-foot bulk cargo freighters which will travel past Parksville, Qualicum Beach and many Gulf Islands to the Pacific and its final destination in Asia.

“We are deeply concerned that the shipping and handling of so much thermal coal will release coal dust into the air and the marine environment”, said Andrew Fall, from Coal Dust Free Salish Sea. “Yet the province of B.C. did not require an Environmental Impact Assessment, and neither the province nor Port Metro Vancouver required a Health Impact Assessment, despite requests from the public and health authorities — this is unacceptable.”

“For such a small community, this is an amazing turn out!”  said Sheila Harrington, a participant in the 36-boat flotilla that crossed the Sabine Channel on Saturday.

— NEWS Staff/Submitted by Sheila Harrington

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Proceeds from the sale of this 36x18” image of a grizzly bear in the water, by local photographer Viktor Davare, will go to the Salvation Army. Photo supplied.
Comox Valley Photographic Society showcased at next Pearl Ellis exhibit

Exhibit to double as a fundraiser for the Salvation Army

Shelter Point Distillery won several Canadian Whisky Awards this year, including a gold for best single malt. Facebook photo
Vancouver Island’s Shelter Point Distillery wins gold for single malt

Business won nine medals at recent Canadian Whisky Awards virtual ceremony

Comox Valley-raised Shay Sandiford has earned a spot on the Canada skateboard team. Facebook
Courtenay skateboarder selected to first-ever national team

A young man from Courtenay is among 12 athletes who have been… Continue reading

A WestJet flight on the runway leaving Comox. Photo by Erin Haluschak
Aviation company seeks contracted employees to fill former WestJet roles at YQQ

Menzies Aviation from Edinburgh Park, Scotland, operates in 34 countries across the world

A cougar was spotted Monday near Queneesh Elementary. (WildSafe BC photo)
Cougar sighted Monday near Courtenay school

Conservation officers are warning the public to avoid the wooded areas around… Continue reading

Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about phase two in B.C.’s COVID-19 immunization plan as Premier John Horgan and Minister Arian Dix look on during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, March 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. reports 438 new COVID cases, 2 deaths

Long-term care outbreaks are decreasing

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The victim of the homicide on Cowichan Lake Road early Monday morning was 17 years old, and was stabbed in the incident. (File photo)
Duncan homicide victim was 17 years old

RCMP report that teenager was stabbed

(File photo)
RCMP arrest man after report of gun-toting threat-maker near Parksville schools

43-year-old man taken into custody; students at nearby schools were asked to stay inside

The machines are akin to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned to identify its unique vein pattern. (CANADIAN PRESS)
Feds dole out $3.5M for ‘vending machines’ to dispense safer opioids in B.C.

Vancouver and Victoria both have a MySafe machine to help reduce overdoses

Kelowna’s lakefront visitor centre is one of 130 around the province. Tourism businesses have been hardest hit by COVID-19 restrictions on travel. (Destination B.C.)
Tourism, small business getting COVID-19 help, B.C. minister says

$300M grant program has delivered $50 million so far

The incident happened in downtown Castlegar. Photo: Betsy Kline
Castlegar teen recounts stabbing after stranger breaks into grandmother’s house

The unnamed teen survived a terrifying attack Feb. 21

(Black Press file photo)
Agassiz boy, 11, dies from ‘extensive injuries’: Homicide team

Agassiz RCMP were called out Friday to assist with a child in medical distress

Dr. Amit Desai of St. Francis Hospital receives a COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 17. (Photo courtesy of CHI Franciscan)
B.C. has now vaccinated more people from COVID-19 than total confirmed cases

B.C. has reached a milestone, vaccinating roughly 1.6% of its population from the coronavirus

Most Read