Comox taxpayers may soon be facing a $3 million bill to fix a $1.5 million BC Liberal gift. Here is why:
About 10 years ago, Sechelt Regional District built a lovely kilometre-long seawall promenade, about three metres wide at Davis Bay, for over $1 million.
As a Sunshine Coast resident, I recall pointing out to local politicians that this seemed pretty but unwise, and that this was quite contrary to the many seminars hosted by the Association of Professional Engineers and Geotechnicians of BC on shoreline adaptation to climate change.
The APEG consensus was that as climate change progressed, seawalls and hard structures in active zones would likely be overwhelmed by tidal surges causing increasing environmental damage.
I was told by local worthies that climate change was a lie, APEG were eggheads, that generally I did not know what I was talking about and, particularly that my concerns were irrelevant to the economic development strategy.
As it is, Davis Bay has now (May 15, 2016) embarked on the difficult process of correcting the very predictable negative impacts of the seawall they built 10 years ago. The minimum bill is $3 million, and involves the building of a sand beach to be replenished every five years.
The current Lazo project gives me a sinking feeling. Comox is repeating Davis Bay’s error, and proceeding in a diametrically opposite direction, importing rock and exporting sand. It is difficult to overcome the destructiveness of a local government that has no respect for the environment and even less respect for its constituents and basic environmental science.
I can therefore only applaud the decision of Project Watershed to initiate a formal complaint to the Ministry of Forest Lands and Natural Resources.
In a recent typo, someone accidentally referred to Mayor Paul Ives and council as the “Comix Council.” There may be much truth in this accidental label, however it is not comical to have jokers in government.
Government is serious business that requires respectable leadership that respects the environment.