Shellfish lovers help coal mine opponents in Comox Valley

More than 150 people filled the Fanny Bay Hall to sample some of the seafood they’re trying to protect from the impact of the Raven mine.

More than 150 people filled the Fanny Bay Hall Saturday night to sample some of the very seafood they’re trying to protect from the impact of the proposed Raven Coal Mine.

The Oceans of Plenty III seafood dinner, featuring clams, geoduck, mussels and of course oysters, raised funds for CoalWatch Comox Valley and awareness of how the proposed coal mine could impact on the aquaculture industry.

“It was a fantastic evening,” said CoalWatch president John Snyder. “It reminded all of us that our shellfish industry is precious and we’ve got to protect it.”

Snyder said hundreds of shellfish jobs are threatened by the proposed coal mine, which would be situated in the heart of the Baynes Sound watershed.

In addition to the threat to the shellfish industry, Snyder said people at the dinner were very concerned about the mine’s impact on water quality, air quality, salmon habitat and road safety.

Diners came from the Comox Valley, Parksville-Qualicum, Port Alberni, and as far away as Victoria to enjoy the gourmet dinner and bid on a large array of silent and live auction items.

“The many donations of items for the silent and live auctions, along with the generous bidding for those auction items surpassed our wildest expectations,” said Snyder. “We’re confident that we’ll exceed last years total of over $9,500 being raised.”

The mine proposal is in the midst of an environmental assessment. For more information, visit www.coalwatch.ca.

— CoalWatch Comox Valley

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